Everything that happens today — natural disasters, shootings, morning talkshow firings — is filtered through a political lens, examined less for its own direct consequences and more for its possible effect on poll numbers or election outcomes. The migrant caravan, for example, is really a story about the violence and corruption in Honduras that prompts thousands of people to flee north, and how the United States might respond to it, but its proximity to the Nov. 6 election makes it about partisan politics.
This focus can lead to conspiratorial thinking, and it’s showing in some of the letters sent to the L.A. Times this week. For example, some say the migrant caravan seems timed just too perfectly to stir anti-immigrant voters for it not to have been started or at least encouraged by President Trump’s allies. And those crude bombs mailed to two Democratic ex-presidents and some of Trump’s most outspoken critics, just weeks before the election, bear the markings of a false-flag operation, write some Trump supporters.
The only thing these two lines of thinking have in common is that there is no evidence to back them up, but that hasn’t stopped them from making up part of the commentary we received on the caravan or the bombing scare.
A reader from Claremont is just asking a question:
I am hearing outside the mainstream media that the bomb fiasco could be the work of Democrats trying to draw attention away from the caravan. Lots of people are talking about it but don't say it because it would be politically incorrect.
I’m just asking. It is an interesting point of view.
One reader from Encino, who wrote before the arrest of a man in South Florida, connects the bombing scare to the Brett Kavanaugh hearings:
A 10-year-old boy can see the bombs mailed to prominent Democrats and Trump critics are linked. It’s the same game when then-Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s sexual assault allegation was made public just days before he was to be confirmed.
Now pipe bombs are sent to Democrats weeks before Nov. 6, and Republicans look bad. I can guarantee you, 100%, these pipe bombs were sent by a leftist loon.
Regarding the caravan, a resident of Chula Vista has a hunch:
I am suspicious of the timing of this caravan from Honduras. It’s so close to the 2018 midterm election.
It gives President Trump plenty of opportunity to make comments about the border situation.
One Culver City resident suspects this is a big photo-op:
Conspiracy theories have been presented regarding the migrant caravan: It was organized by Democrats or by political opponents of Honduras' right-wing president.
I have a third theory: Right-wing U.S. operatives wanted to create great photos of a massive “invasion” with precise timing for the midterm election. It's the perfect way to promote fear and fire up the Trump base.
They can say: “See? We were right. Build the wall. Don't let the Democrats control the House.”