Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Civility Watchdog: June 21, 2016, Josh Earnest

"The truth of the matter is the individuals who spend their time talking about radical Islamic terrorism are individuals like Republicans in the Senate who voted against legislation that would prevent those individuals from being able to buy a gun. And those are individuals who not actually put forward their own strategy for keeping the country safe. Using the term "radical Islamic extremism" is not a counterterrorism policy. It is a political talking point plain and simple. And what the president of the United States has done has put forward a comprehensive strategy to squeeze the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria to inhibit their ability to recruit and radicalize people around the globe."
-- White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest, June 21, 2016.

Comment: First of all, is it true that everyone who uses the term "radical Islamic terrorism" is somehow in league with Senate Republicans? And, even if they are, so what? That doesn't prove anything about whether use of the term is appropriate. Second, this is "talking points" rhetoric. Telling us that some article of rhetoric is a talking point tells us nothing about whether the rhetoric is relevant and true. Earnest's attempt to dismiss the criticism by using the term "talking point" accomplishes nothing.

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