Donald Trump will not make America great again, as he proclaims.
If elected, he would only weaken the United States, attempt to gut the Constitution and embarrass the greatest country in the world.
Trump is a salesman, relentless self-promoter and reality television star. He’s not a leader or worthy of the presidency.
Few politicians have stooped as low as Trump has in seeking to be the leader of the free world. He’s angry, derisive, divisive, demagogic and vulgar. And yet Trump’s brand of vitriol has him atop the national polls.
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The reasons for his popularity?
With all his boastful bellowing, Trump has convinced many Americans that he is a success, a tough guy, a big-time dealmaker who rarely loses. More importantly, Trump is angry – at brown people, women, Muslims, the disabled, liberals and anyone who dares challenge him with facts, figures or reason.
That appeals to Americans who believe our nation is losing its grip. They want someone to blame, and usually settle on those being targeted by Trump. Tough guy, autocrat, king – Trump is their champion.
On Monday, Trump doubled down on his scapegoating of Muslims by calling for a “total and complete shutdown” of Muslims entering the United States until lawmakers “can figure out what is going on” in the wake of terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino.
“Until we are able to determine and understand this problem and the dangerous threat it poses, our country cannot be the victims of horrendous attacks by people that believe only in Jihad, and have no sense of reason or respect for human life,” Trump said in his a statement released by his campaign.
With all his boastful bellowing, Trump has convinced many Americans that he is a success, a tough guy, a big-time deal-maker who rarely loses. More importantly, Trump is angry – at brown people, women, Muslims, the disabled, liberals and anyone who dares challenge him with facts, figures or reason.
Such statements cause us to wonder if Trump has read the Constitution or has even a cursory grasp of American history. One of our country’s great founding principles is freedom of religion.
Later Monday, Trump pulled back a bit. Someone in his campaign perhaps pointed out that Muslims have fought and died for our country and that there are Muslims in our armed forces stationed overseas right now. Appearing on Fox News, Trump said that American Muslims serving in the military abroad would be able to return home.
Thank you, King Donald.
Trump reminds us of another bully who promised to make his country great again – Vladimir Putin. We suspect that many of the same people who yearn for a tough-guy presidency either openly or secretly admire Russia’s often shirtless dictator. They believe he pushes around Barack Obama, takes what he wants and takes care of his friends. Never mind that he ignores international law; props up murderous thugs who gas their own people; orders foes murdered with radioactive poison; and provides missiles for shooting down airliners. He’s tough.
Political campaigns never should be relegated to stupefying debates, boring policy papers and baby-kissing. America’s politicians usually roll into the mud at the first opportunity, accusing each other of adultery, stupidity, perfidy, illegality and even bad breath. Abraham Lincoln was once called a “gorilla” – by a supporter. Lincoln anonymously castigated a political foe so viciously that he was challenged to a duel. That’s politics.
It’s one thing to attack Democrats and liberals; it’s another entirely to focus fear and anger on people of another color, belief or creed. Politics predicated on racism, misogyny and hate is pure poison.
But just as the bigoted Father Charles Coughlin, anti-communist fear-monger Joe McCarthy and racist George Wallace glowed red-hot for a while, they eventually burned out. What they left behind was the residue of their intemperance: distrust, anger, vindictiveness and pain.
Trump can’t burn out fast enough for us.
Jeb Bush got it right when he tweeted Monday that “Donald Trump is unhinged.”