On Tuesday, Representative Darrell Issa quite possibly set a new standard for cynical invocations of shameful incidents in American history to defend similarly shameful practices today.
Speaking on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom,” he compared President Obama’s plan to permanently close the base at Guantanamo Bay to the Trail of Tears, and said that he would support any officers who refused to carry out the “unlawful order.”
“It’s an old example, but Andy Jackson, the founder of the Democratic Party, if you will, in the Trail of Tears defied the Supreme Court and marched Native Americans to their deaths,” Issa said. “Remember the Trail of Tears was only possible, the murder of those Native Americans was only possible, because the military obeyed an order in violation of the U.S. Supreme Court.”
“So do I believe that the military may push back on the President if he’s given an unlawful order? Actually, I do,” Issa said. “I can see flag officers resigning rather than obeying a clearly unlawful order.”
While it is certainly true that Andrew Jackson was a genocidal maniac who perverted whatever lawful means he had at his disposal to execute the violent removal of Native Americans from their homes during his brutal rise to power, including but not limited to the Trail of Tears, along which tens of thousands of Native Americans (and freedmen) died, closing Guantanamo Bay is...not that.