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Erosion of Civility

In Europe, acid attacks appear to be increasing:


Four American college students were attacked with acid by a woman on Sunday at a train station in southern France, injuring at least two of them, according to the local police.
- AURELIEN BREEDEN, Acid Attack in France Injures at Least 2 American Students, NYT, SEPT. 17, 2017


In August, a man suffered serious injuries and scarring when two men threw acid in his face, reportedly because he refused to buy drugs from them. In July, two teenagers were arrested after carrying out five acid attacks in a little over an hour, in some cases blinding victims astride mopeds and stealing the vehicle. In April, an attack at a nightclub left a dozen people with severe burns to their faces and arms.

The Metropolitan Police reported 455 incidents in 2016 in which a corrosive substance was used, a sharp increase from 265 in 2015 and 174 in 2014.
- ELLEN BARRY, Six Burned in Acid Attack as Groups Clash in East London, NYT, SEPT. 23, 2017



They raised a champion. They also raised a narcissistic loner who lacked basic decency. “Even the most basic human civilities — a simple hello or thank you — routinely went missing from his vocabulary. A nod was too much to expect.”
- DWIGHT GARNER, A New Biography Traces Tiger Woods’s Mythical Rise and Fall, NYT, MARCH 19, 2018


''“The Democrats have become too extreme,” Mr. Trump said at a rally on Tuesday in Council Bluffs, Iowa. “And they’ve become, frankly, too dangerous to govern. They’ve gone wacko.” Democrats, he added, are practicing the “politics of anger, division and destruction.” In Erie on Wednesday night, he again warned about the “radical Democrat mob.”


Mr. Trump has often engaged in what some analysts call projection, describing his opponents in the same terms they use to describe him. While his own mental stability has been questioned, Mr. Trump regularly calls his foes “crazy,” “psycho,” “wacky” and “mentally deranged.” Just weeks after a former aide published a book about him titled “Unhinged,” he applied the same word to Democrats.'' ...

''Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. this year boasted that if they were in high school together, he would have “beat the hell” out of Mr. Trump for disrespecting women — to which the president replied that if they did fight, Mr. Biden “would go down fast and hard, crying all the way.” ...
Hillary Clinton waded into the debate this week in an interview with CNN when she rejected the notion of civility with Mr. Trump’s Republicans. “You cannot be civil with a political party that wants to destroy what you stand for, what you care about,” she said. ...
Not every Democrat agrees with the more aggressive approach. Senator Heidi Heitkamp, a Democrat trailing in her bid for re-election in Trump-friendly North Dakota, repudiated Mrs. Clinton’s comments. “That’s ridiculous,” she told CNN. “I can’t imagine how you get anything done if you don’t bring civility back into politics, and that goes for both sides.” ...
“If you see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the crap out of them, would you?” Mr. Trump said at one rally, promising if they did, “I will pay for the legal fees.” At another, he said of a protester, “I’d like to punch him in the face.” ...
In an interview on Fox News on Wednesday night, Mr. Trump denied that he bore any responsibility for the current incivility because of statements like those. ...
His messages at his latest rallies include inherent contradictions. Upset at the allegations made against Justice Kavanaugh, he lately has extolled due process, even as he bathes in “lock her up” chanting about opponents who have never been charged with a crime. He has talked about the presumption of innocence but says he is “99 percent” sure Senator Dianne Feinstein, Democrat of California, leaked a letter accusing Justice Kavanaugh of sexual assault, basing his conclusion not on evidence but on her “body language” in denying it.

It was his comments about Ms. Feinstein that generated the “lock her up” chants in Council Bluffs, following the more ritual “lock her up” chants at the mention of Mrs. Clinton. Mr. Trump then said Democrats have grown out of control: “You don’t hand matches to an arsonist, and you don’t give power to an angry left-wing mob. And that’s what the Democrats are becoming.”
- Peter Baker, Trump’s Contradiction: Assailing ‘Left-Wing Mob’ as Crowd Chants ‘Lock Her Up’, NYT, Oct. 10, 2018






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