Right Hooks

Trump's Non-Gaffe on Sweden

Thomas Gallatin · Feb. 22, 2017

In a campaign-style rally speech Saturday, Donald Trump said, “We’ve got to keep our country safe. You look at what’s happening in Germany, you look at what’s happening last night in Sweden. Sweden, who would believe this? Sweden. They took in large numbers [of immigrants]. They’re having problems like they never thought possible. You look at what’s happening in Brussels. You look at what’s happening all over the world. Take a look at Nice [France]. Take a look at Paris.” The Leftmedia once again pounced. Sweden hasn’t had a terror attack. What’s Trump talking about?!

By now the media, with its obsession of covering everything Trump, should be well aware of Trump’s unvarnished rhetorical style. As many have stated, listen for what he means not what he says. Admittedly, Trump was rather vague with his “last night” reference, not elaborating until later that he was referring to a Fox News story. However, given the larger context of Trump defending his recent immigration orders against Leftmedia pushback it seemed rather obvious that he was pointing out the problems Europe’s mass immigration policies have created.

But the Leftmedia had fun mocking Trump for disseminating more “fake news” — and then Monday happened. Reports of rioting in an immigrant-heavy suburb of Stockholm proved Trump’s point. Sweden’s liberal policy on accepting refugee immigrants in such mass numbers has become increasingly untenable. Sweden is now spending 1.5% of it GDP on asylum-seekers, more than it spends on defense. Among the immigrant population, there is 43% unemployment, much of this due to lack of cultural assimilation and language abilities, and low labor skills. While Sweden has seen an overall decrease in crime since 2005, it has seen an alarming rise in the number of violent crimes like rape in the last couple of years.

Trump has tapped into the zeitgeist of the moment regarding unfettered and unvetted immigration. What spurred the nationalist/populist movements both here in the U.S. and in Europe is the reality of the clashing of significant cultural values. When the generosity of one culture is met with scorn and violence from the other, it’s little wonder that the dominant culture then pulls back and demands protection. Trump’s manner may be easy to mock, but ignoring the message because of the messenger is a recipe for disaster.

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