I generally work to keep this blog politics free. Occasionally I write about silly things politicians say, but those posts can be counted on two or three fingers in five years of content. And, sure, I write about gun violence regularly, but to me that is a public health issue and we should work to keep the politics out of it. Today, though, Imma get a bit political up in here.
I don’t understand the whole Trump thing. I’ve asked my conservative friends to help me understand, but they are equally stumped. No one seems to claim the man, and yet his rallies are full of fist pumping patriots. I sit here wondering when hate and vitriol and misogyny became so patriotic.
For months, liberal friends have poked fun at this man, full of hubris about how silly the GOP has become. None of them are laughing much anymore. A seriousness has entered their posts, a sense that a President Trump is, indeed, a possibility, and not just a joke.
As a mother of young boys, I find the idea of four or eight years of my sons’ childhoods under a President Trump unconscionable. Terrifying, actually, especially after seeing the three little girls happily dancing to propaganda set to music about crushing people who don’t believe in “freedom.”
My guess that all of us who are parents, no matter what side of the political aisle we align yourselves with, work hard, day in and day out, to instill values and behavioral expectations for the little ones we are raising to be adults someday. The lessons we teach them are universal and transcend politics:
- Do not bully.
- Do not make fun of people with disabilities.
- Do not treat people who are different differently.
- Do not prey on people who have weaknesses.
- Do not call people “losers.”
This is basic parenting, 101 kind of stuff, you know?
And yet, Candidate Trump is in his salad days on the campaign trail with exactly these behaviors. Thousands, as he so often reminds us, flock to his rallies to cheer on what he calls patriotism. Any clip I see seems to categorize today’s America as a cesspool of awful, but a vote for Trump will “make America great again.”
I don’t know, folks, but the idea of our next American President entering office with an agenda of building walls to protect us then require another country to pay for those walls, well, it just doesn’t make sense. Many folks around the world already think of America as a bully. Can you imagine the implications of an actual bully, as Trump proves himself to be time and time again, gaining a position of power and authority?
I know my thinking is simplistic, but some things truly are black and white. Exhibit A are Donald Trump’s own words. They speak for themselves:
- “You know, it really doesn’t matter what the media writes as long as you’ve got a young and beautiful piece of ass.”
- On exporting goods to China, “Listen you motherfuckers, we’re going to tax you 25%!”
- “The only kind of people I want counting my money are little short guys that wear yamakas every day.”
- “Arianna Huffington is unattractive both inside and out. I fully understand why her former husband left her for a man.”
- “If you can’t get rich dealing with politicians, there’s something wrong with you.”
- “Free trade can be wonderful if you have smart people, but we have stupid people.”
- On John McCain, “He’s not a war hero. He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren’t captured.”
- “All the women on The Apprentice flirted with me – consciously or unconsciously. That’s to be expected.”
These quotes are but a sprinkle of the ugly vitriol that Donald Trump puts forth on a never ending basis. He categorizes people into “winners” and “losers” with impunity, growing ever more popular with each insult.
It’s too much. If what’s involved in “making America great” again is a litany of crass insults, appealing to our basest instincts, and puffing up my chest with hate and name calling, I want none of it.
For me, I want to vote for a president that doesn’t rely on instigating the worst in us for votes. I want my children to be proud of their country, to look to their president as a human, man or woman, that works to better their country, not divide it. And when my sons watch news clips in the next four or eight years, I don’t want to have to shield them from the antics and despicable behavior of our Commander in Chief.
We have an opportunity here, folks, just like we get every four years. If you are unhappy with what is happening in Washington, I implore you to VOTE, exercising that greatest of American rights. But I also caution you to be sensible. If you would not encourage name calling, buffoonery, misogyny, or bullying in the children you are raising, do not condone it in your president.