Why would Democrats in Orange County, North Carolina — one of the most progressive and educated counties in the nation — firebomb a local GOP office?
The county that’s home to the University of North Carolina, the up-scale city of Chapel Hill and is a neighbor to Durham’s Duke University, votes overwhelmingly Democratic in every election. In 2012, when Mitt Romney defeated Barack Obama across North Carolina 50–48%, Obama trounced Romney with 70% of the vote in Orange County. The GOP is a non-factor in Orange County, North Carolina. Firebombing a GOP headquarters there is not only illegal, it’s unnecessary: the local Republicans obliterated themselves long ago in Orange County, NC.
I’ve been in North Carolina a little less than one-week, working with the North Carolina Democratic Campaign Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign to educate rank & file NC voters about becoming Poll Watchers to assure that Voting Rights are respected during the State’s Early voting period, October 20-November 5, and on Election Day, November 8. The volunteers streaming into training sessions — from one end of the State to the other — are high-minded, public-service oriented folks, with a deep commitment to make democracy work for all voters, regardless of party.
Mostly senior citizens, these civic-minded citizens are the models of dignity and decorum, concerned about issues like long lines at the polls, making sure accommodations are made for the disabled to vote, and concern over what constitutes “intimidation” in an Open Carry state which allows voters to carry their guns to polling places. Many of the volunteers are retired school teachers, lawyers, small business owners, homemakers, or veterans with military service.
Still other campaign workers are Millenials with a passion for making government work fairly for all people, a deep commitment to public service, and a penchant for crunching numbers on computers. Like their fellow volunteers of a different generation, they are dedicated to the peaceful functioning of our democracy, and the rule of law, as a positive alternative to chaos or violence.
What makes this Orange County, North Carolina firebombing all the more suspicious —
aside from the fact that the Orange County GOP is non-existent in elections — is the fact that Donald Trump began “Tweeting” about the bombing hours after it happened, blaming “Hillary Clinton supporters” and “Democrats” for the crime, without any shred of evidence. In fact, every single Democrat or Hillary supporter I’ve encountered in North Carolina is gravely concerned about doing everything the law provides to prevent violence in this election.
Trump’s feigned hysteria carries the stench of the history of another famous fire: the one in the German Reichstag, started by the White Nationalist Party of Adolph Hitler during the German national elections of 1933, and blamed on the Communists. The Reichstag Fire, was immediately pounced upon by Nazi leaders as “evidence” of terror from the left, and the need for the authoritarian rule which their leader promised. It was instrumental in leading to the election of Hitler as German Chancellor, despite any evidence to buttress the Nazis’ wild claims.
Eventually, the facts about this fire-bombing in heavily Democratic Orange County, North Carolina, will come out, and justice will be meted out to the perpetrators of the crime. Until then, it’s reasonable to wonder why Democrats would have anything to do with attacking an opposition party headquarters that has been dormant for years.