I understand why some people dislike Donald Trump. He certainly says intemperate things, appears to have no deeply intelligent governing philosophy and is at the extreme end of the narcissist spectrum. That said, the media/punditry meltdown over his alleged "ambiguous" "inadequate" statement in the immediate aftermath of a crazed rightwing extremist 20 year old running over a bunch of lefty radicals on Saturday in Charlottesville has taken this country beyond satire. We are on the brink of something very dangerous.
Here was Trump's initial statement:
“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence on many sides — on many sides,”
When I heard this on Saturday I was still waiting for news about who was responsible for the so-called attack. I thought this was a very reasonable, responsible comment from Trump. Unlike Barack Obama, who frequently jumped to incorrect conclusions (condemning police in Cambridge, Massachusetts, for instance), Trump was very clear about condemning hatred, bigotry and violence.
Then ensuing firestorm of faux outraged, especially from despicable pols like Mitt Romney, John Kasich and Marco Rubio, forced me to go back and listen again to what Trump said. Trump was (and is) being accused of embracing the KKK and neo-Nazis. What the hell?
Various other Republican senators also criticized Trump, including Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), second ranking Senate Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.).
I have one phrase fro these Republican hypocrites–Go Have Sexual Congress with yourself. I challenge anyone to provide me with a statement, written or verbal, where Donald Trump embraces racism, anti-semitism or radical right ideology. Just one damn quote. I dare you.
We can point to several failure on the part of Trump's communications team over the last eight months, but I can empathize with their confusion over the claims that Trump was going soft on extremism. On Monday Trump made and even stronger statement:
"Racism is evil," the president said, "and anyone who causes violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans."
Still not good enough for those bent on destroying Donald Trump. When I hear so-called political and business leaders describe this as "an ambiguous" statement I then realize that this is not a fair game. This is political propaganda at its worst. But it ain't the President who is doing the propaganda. The media and political and business elite have banded together to push a lie.
But that is not all. Creeping out of the sewers are the radical ideologues keen on eradicating any vestige of American history. These are rebels keen on reinventing the past. The calls to erase all statues associated with anyone who fought for the Confederacy or was a slave owner has gone beyond the absurd. We now are confronting a rabble possessed of a mindset akin to the blood lust of the Khmer Rouge of Cambodia and the fanaticism of ISIS jihadis, who destroyed ancient historical monuments because they claimed those pieces of stone were idols. These are radicals convinced in their truth and their vision who are willing to do whatever it takes to promote their twisted vision of perfection.
These crazies, I believe, are overplaying their hand. Enough Americans understand and grasp how bizarre and unfair their rantings are and will in turn start pushing back. There is a danger here, however. The Americans being labeled as racists are more likely to own guns than those lefty cretins who arrogantly insist that Trump supporters are in-bred morons. That is a recipe for real conflict and is the kind of tension that triggered the Civil War of 1860.
Important to remember, however, that the crazed kid mowing down lefties on Saturday was not an organized effort. Just compare the lethality achieved today in Barcelona, Spain by a committed jihadi. He left at least 13 dead and more than a 100 wounded. The right wing nut in Charlottesville only killed one and his effort was not part of an organized plan to wreak mayhem.
There may be a silver lining in all of this for Donald Trump. He now will have no illusion about who his enemies are. They have jumped out of the closet and revealed themselves. This information in the hands of a Machiavellian ruler would be potent. Remains to be seen if Donald Trump actually knows how to play such a game or is just a pretender.