Jared Kushner’s BFF Van Jones Thinks Trump’s Police Reform Is Just Awesome
Van Jones did something strange the other week. The former Obama aide went on CNN, appearing from his home with a Black Panther graphic novel on his bookshelf, and praised Donald Trump's "weak-tea," cop-stroking executive order for police reform.
JONES: The executive order is a good thing, mainly because you saw the support of law enforcement there. That gives you a sense of where the ... floor is for reform and that floor is higher than it's been. There's movement in the direction of a database for bad cops. We've never had a federal database for bad cops. You're gonna have de-escalators now alongside cops so you can talk people down and not shoot people down. The chokehold ... that's common ground now between [Nancy] Pelosi and Trump.
This crock of spin was grossly misleading. Trump's executive order permits chokeholds if the officer believes their life is in danger, and cops always believe their life is in danger. Pelosi wanted a straight-up ban because she considers a chokehold a “lynching." That's not common ground.
The Trump campaign posted Jones's glowing review on its YouTube page. This was "fake news" Trump could believe in.
Van Jones supporting President Trump's Executive Order on police reform youtu.be
The Daily Beast broke the depressing news this weekend that Jones was actually praising his own book report. Jones did so shamelessly and without informing viewers that he'd attended White House meetings on police non-reform with soul brother Jared Kushner. This is all kinds of unethical.
According to a knowledgeable White House source, who expressed satisfaction that there were zero leaks, Jones and California human rights attorney Jessica Jackson, who runs #cut50, a prison-reform group that Jones also founded, actively participated with law enforcement officials and White House staffers to help fashion the order and guide the politics of the discussion to what they considered "the sweet spot" between law enforcement and "the reasonable middle" and "the reasonable left."
This White House is so fucking stupid. The “knowledgeable source" brags about how there were “zero leaks" while leaking all over the place like a poorly maintained waterbed. Jones is arguably even dumber, as he believed there was a “sweet spot" between “reasonable" people and the police, who if they were reasonable would've stopped killing people by now. Jones didn't even have the sense to realize he was being used. “Guiding the discussion" involved convincing “reasonable people" that law enforcement was going to meet this particular moment, instead of just whining that no one likes them or will deliver their Egg McMuffin promptly.
If Van Jones wants to work in politics and partner with the White House, that’s his call. But it is unethical to la… https://t.co/H3K5ktpreN— Shannon Watts (@Shannon Watts)1593396968.0
Jones later broke out the pom-poms and cheered for Trump's executive order on "Anderson Cooper 360."
JONES: What you got today is, I think, a sign that we are winning ... Donald Trump has put himself on record saying we need to reform the police department … We are winning! Donald Trump had no plan a month ago to work on this issue at all. The fact that we are now in the direction of moving forward, I think, is good.
Hmm, well, Jones, I happen to have Malcolm X right here and he disagrees with your definition of progress. His observation that "they won't even admit the knife is there" predicted the antics from the "All Lives Matter!" crowd.
Malcolm X- On Progress youtu.be
The Jones/Kushner relationship is something out of a Jordan Peele movie. In early 2017, Jones was dragging Trump like any Black man who's alive and conscious would. He (correctly) noted that Trump was "one of the worst people ever born." Then CNN's Washington Bureau Chief, Sam Feist, introduced Jones to Trump's creepy Ken doll son-in-law and a week later Jones is claiming Trump “became president" when he said something nice about the widow of Navy SEAL Ryan Owens during his first address to Congress:
JONES: [T]hat was one of the most extraordinary moments you have ever seen in American politics. Period…For people who had been hoping that he would become unifying, hoping that he might find some way to become presidential, they should be happy with that moment.
Owens was the first American to die in combat during Trump's administration, but the squatter-in-chief still tried to pin the blame on Barack Obama. That moment during Trump's address to Congress wasn't “extraordinary" or “unifying."
Kushner and Jones became “fast friends" and the undercover brother even has dinner sometimes with Jared and Ivanka Trump. He comes in through the front door and everything! The couple has also introduced Jones to the mid-tier celebrities willing to socialize with them.
KUSHNER: In a tough situation Van has shown me that he's got true character. He's focused on the right things.
No one asked what you think, Jared!
Al Sharpton generously suggested that Jones is fooling himself by working with a family of scorpions.
SHARPTON: Van's experiment with Trump is a case of him having more faith than I have, but I'm not going to attack him for doing it…I think he's well-intentioned, but I think he totally underestimates the kind of guy he's dealing with. I just disagree that the people he's dealing with have a sincere bone in their body. But I can't fault him for trying.
Oh, but I sure can.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He's on the board of the Portland Playhouse theater and writes for the immersive theater Cafe Nordo in Seattle. Tickets are on sale now for his latest Nordo collaboration, "Curiouser and Curiouser," an adaptation of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass." It promises to feel like an actual evening with SER (for good or for ill).