Wednesday night racist U.S. Congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FL) posted video to Twitter claiming it depicted men in Honduras paying women and children to join the caravan headed to “storm the US border.” He asked if the cash was coming from George Soros, a liberal funder who has become the Republicans’ all-time favorite target.
There is exactly zero proof the video showed what Gaetz claimed it did, or that it was even filmed in Honduras. He has offered no evidence. He has not revealed the video’s source, nor is there any evidence migrants making the caravan trip to the U.S. Southern border are being paid to do so by George Soros, or Democrats, or anyone else.
In fact, conspiracy theorist researcher Travis View, whose work has been published in The Washington Post, tweets about where the video was filmed. He credits Twitter user PragmaticProgressive for figuring it out.
It wasn’t Honduras at all, so Gaetz is just plain wrong – or lying.
Update: @pragmaticleft discovered where the video was filmed with Google Maps. The location is in fact outside this building in Chiquimula, Guatemala, not anywhere in Honduras, as Congressman Gaetz’s tweet falsely claimed.https://t.co/nu31QutUbX pic.twitter.com/WoyLdwjYEX
— Travis View (@travis_view) October 18, 2018
Any casual observer who is not told what Gaetz claims the video shows likely would not say, “Footage in Honduras giving cash 2 women & children 2 join the caravan & storm the US border @ election time,” which is what Gaetz tweeted.
The Florida GOP Congressman was rightly mocked, but the damage was done.
President Trump just reported the video – not crediting Gaetz for it, of course – and tweeting, “Can you believe this, and what Democrats are allowing to be done to our Country?”
Anyone unfamiliar with Gaetz’s tweet would be in the dark.
But that’s how racist dogwhistles work. It’s all an “inside joke,” and Trump’s racist supporters love to feel like they’re on the inside, that their president “gets them.” The joke is on them, however, because he does.
President Trump isn’t making any effort to unite America, as he repeatedly promised. He isn’t the “president for all of our citizens,” as he promised he would be. He is, in fact, doing everything he can to divide this nation. And it’s working.
In fact, this is, to my memory, the first time in American politics where a sitting president – and sitting elected lawmakers at the federal, state, and local level – are actively campaigning not against their political opponents, but against voters of the opposition party.
Here’s Trump’s tweet:
Can you believe this, and what Democrats are allowing to be done to our Country? pic.twitter.com/4aDpASkjIU
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 18, 2018
By the way, Mr. President, when are you going to reunite the hundreds (if not more) of migrant children you ripped from their parents’ arms?