Former President Donald Trump caused quite a stir Saturday when he took to his social media website, Truth Social, to announce he expects to be arrested on charges in New York stemming from alleged hush money payments to adult actress Stormy Daniels..
After alleging illegal leaks by the Manhattan District Attorney's office and links to financier George Soros, President Trump wrote in all caps: "THE FAR & AWAY LEADING REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE & FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, WILL BE ARRESTED ON TUESDAY OF NEXT WEEK. PROTEST, TAKE OUR NATION BACK!"
He followed up later Saturday with "THEY'RE KILLING OUR NATION AS WE SIT BACK & WATCH. WE MUST SAVE AMERICA! PROTEST, PROTEST, PROTEST!!!"
President Trump's office later said it had no advance knowledge of any arrest. And we'll have to see what, if any, charges are actually filed.
What's important right now is that President Trump's words not be taken as anything more than what they are. The former president, for better or worse, doesn't always think things through before he posts on social media. He doesn't always consider what effect his words can have on a small faction of his followers.
President Trump's call for protest is not a call to arms. It is not a call for violence or revolution. It's important for everyone to remember that.
Peaceful protest is the right of every American. Reckless violence is not. That's the most important thing to remember as we see what happens regarding these possible charges in the days ahead.