We all know people who rub us the wrong way simply by their appearance or the sound of their voice.
After Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi ripped up her copy of the President’s State of the Union speech, I saw many criticisms leveled at her on social media. Most of the criticism ripped Pelosi for her mannerisms, her “insincere” smile, her “loose dentures,” blah blah blah.
Personally, I become agitated whenever I see or hear Ted Cruz (I just want to punch him in the face) — so I somewhat relate to this kind of shallow knee-jerk visceral response to someone’s personality or looks.
But my disdain for Donald Trump has nothing to do with his looks, or the way he talks, or how he mangles the English language nearly every time he opens his pie hole. No, my disdain for Trump is based mainly on his behavior. My disdain is based on a public record of what he’s done and said for the last 40 years.
I ask myself, would I ever point to this man as an example to my children? That’s my barometer. Is this man a decent, high-character individual, one that I can say without hesitation that I am proud is representing our country?
This has nothing to do with an economy humming along — or whether unemployment is at an all-time low.
No. Instead, I ask myself:
If I had a 13-year-old daughter, would I feel comfortable letting her ride the elevator alone with Mr. Trump?
Would I feel uncomfortable sitting in front of a television with my 13-year-old daughter listening to Donald Trump equate a woman’s value with her looks or degrading a woman because she is overweight?
If my 13-year old daughter was sitting next to me during one of several interviews where the President sexualized his own daughter, would I wince, or would I laugh along with it?
How would I explain the post-presidential debate comment from Donald Trump insinuating that the tough questions from a female reporter were somehow tied to her menstrual cycle? How would I justify it?
If I had a handicapped child and we were watching the news report and video of the President mocking a handicapped reporter, how would I explain that away?
In the lead-up to his run for the Presidency, Donald Trump continuously spread the birtherism rumor about Barack Obama. This was not because Trump believed the lie – he simply wanted to discredit the first African American President. He just wanted to knock the first African American President down a peg by spreading lies and misinformation.
How does that jibe with the integrity we should expect from our commander in chief?
How do I put aside the fact that the person who sits in the Oval Office is the same man who created a fake university to scam money from working-class people who were simply looking to better themselves?
How do I disregard the fact that the President ran a charity as a criminal enterprise?
I could cite a dozen more examples that demonstrate Donald Trump is not simply a flawed man but rather a shitty, self-absorbed, vindictive, and intellectually vapid douche bag.
So many of this man’s actions are part of the public record; there is nothing really to dispute.
But what’s so frustrating is that none of these facts are show stoppers for people that I know (or thought I knew) – and that baffles the fuck out of me.
I hear this from people all the time — people I thought I knew.
I’ve come to realize we don’t really “know” anyone except our family and closest friends.
I’m done assuming that the people I “know” and associate with on social media are decent-minded — as if “decent-mindedness” was an inherent human trait. It’s not. Decency is taught, learned, and practiced — it is fed, nurtured, and supported by those closest to us, but only if those people themselves have been taught or shown what it means to be “decent.”
What I’ve learned over the last 4 years, in an eye-opening-perspective-changing-punch-in-the-face, is a fuck-load of my “friends” are not decent-minded at all.
Despite the never-ending shit-show of the last four years, many of them are unwilling to call a liar a liar, a criminal a criminal, a traitor a traitor, and a demagogue a demagogue – even when the President (through actions and words) demonstrates he is all those things.
I wrongly assumed that if I just pointed out the obvious, people with a modicum of intelligence and a smidgen of integrity would be able to connect the dots — especially when those dots reside on a fairly straight line — that the President of the United States is a habitual liar, a criminal, a traitor, a narcissistic demagogue and, in the words of his own sister, has “no principles and cannot be trusted“.
The President’s desperate attempt to cling to power, which is inextricably tied to his fear of criminal prosecution, come at the expense of our national security, the safety of our troops, the health of our citizens, our national unity, and the principals of western democracy on which our country was built.
I wrongly assumed that the continuous four-year flow of misinformation and lies that fall from the President’s mouth, like garbage from the back of a sanitation vehicle, would be evidence enough to convince all Americans that the President of the United States is a threat to the country.
Instead, what’ I’ve learned over the last 4-years is that none of the President’s behavior matters to the millions of sheep in MAGA hats, who are so full of fear and drunk on conspiracy theories, that they follow this President like bewitched cultists, bludgeoning our democracy with their bibles and strangling our freedoms with the American flag.
I left Facebook because every time I logged in, I was reminded that America suffers from a malignancy of dimwitted nationalists and hateful bigots — and unfortunately, my Friends-list was littered with them.
America will collapse under another 4 years of this President unless decent-minded citizens show up en masse on November 3rd 2020.
Menacing phrases that we’d expect from a mobster, a gangster, a thug – not the President of the United States.
When a president wants to replace an ambassador, a simple letter asking for their resignation and thanking them for their service is the norm.
Instead, we get:
“She’s gonna go through some things.”
“Take her out.”
“Get rid of her.”
Instead, we get presidential tweets and ginned-up articles from right-wing propaganda machines that sully and degrade the reputation of a career diplomat with an impeccable record of service and sacrifice.
Instead, we listen and watch as the most powerful man in the world publicly drags a distinguished member of our foreign service through the mud.
And for what?
Because her high ethical standards served as a barrier to the President’s craven lust for power and political advantage.
“She’s gonna go through some things”
“Take her out”
“Get rid of her”
Trump’s threat to Ambassador Yovanovitch and the smear he initiated during her testimony (via a fucking Tweet) were despicable and beneath contempt, and ANOTHER example of the character (or lack thereof) of our President.
How much more evidence do people need that the President is a thug, driven by self-interest?
What is the moral tipping point for those who use low unemployment numbers and a high stock market as rationale for turning a blind-eye to presidential thuggery and crimes?
By the way, we can have a decent and moral president – AND a strong economy – Just look at our last president.