Friday, July 22, 2016

Washington Post's Unprecedented Anti-Trump Editorial

The Washington Post ran a full-page ad today, one day after Donald Trump accepted the Republican nomination for president of the United States, spelling out in prolific and profound prose the dangers of a Trump presidency. It was an amazing piece of writing. The piece hit on many topics: Trump’s playing on the racist and xenophobic undercurrent in GOP voter stances, his debilitating lack of experience or willingness to listen and learn, his wildly dangerous and improbable solutions to all the wrong problems, and his complete ignorance about the constitution. The article cannot be printed here in its entirety, but here are some of the highlights.
‘Donald J. Trump, until now a Republican problem, this week became a challenge the nation must confront and overcome. The real estate tycoon is uniquely unqualified to serve as president, in experience and temperament. He is mounting a campaign of snarl and sneer, not substance. To the extent he has views, they are wrong in their diagnosis of America’s problems and dangerous in their proposed solutions. Mr. Trump’s politics of denigration and division could strain the bonds that have held a diverse nation together. His contempt for constitutional norms might reveal the nation’s two-century-old experiment in checks and balances to be more fragile than we knew […]
‘There is nothing on Mr. Trump’s résumé to suggest he could function successfully in Washington. He was staked in the family business by a well-to-do father and has pursued a career marked by some real estate successes, some failures and Repeated episodes of saving his own hide while harming people who trusted him. Given his continuing refusal to release his tax returns, breaking with a long bipartisan tradition, it is only reasonable to assume there are aspects of his record even more discreditable than what we know.
‘Given his ignorance, it is perhaps not surprising that Mr. Trump offers no coherence when it comes to policy. In years past, he supported immigration reform, gun control and Legal abortion; as candidate, he became a hard-line opponent of all three. Even in the course of the campaign, he has flip-flopped on issues such as whether Muslims should be banned from entering the United States and whether women who have abortions should be punished. Worse than the flip-flops is the absence of any substance in his agenda. Existing Trade deals are “stupid,” but Mr. Trump does not say how they could be improved. The Islamic State must be destroyed, but the candidate offers no strategy for doing so. Eleven million undocumented immigrants must be deported, but Mr. Trump does not tell us how he would accomplish this legally or practically.
‘What the candidate does offer is a series of prejudices and gut feelings, most of them erroneous. Allies are taking advantage of the United States. Immigrants are committing crimes and stealing jobs. Muslims hate America. In fact, Japan and South Korea are major contributors to an alliance that has preserved a peace of enormous benefit to Americans. Immigrants commit fewer crimesthan native-born Americans and take jobs that no one else will. Muslims are the primary victims of Islamist terrorism, and Muslim Americans, including thousands who have served in the military, are as patriotic as anyone else […]
‘Mr. Trump campaigns by insult and denigration, insinuation and wild accusation: Ted Cruz’s father was involved in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy; Hillary Clinton may be guilty of murder; Mr. Obama is a traitor who wants Muslims to attack. The Republican Party has moved the lunatic fringe onto center stage, with discourse that renders impossible the kind of substantive debate upon which any civil democracy depends […]
‘The party’s failure of judgment leaves the nation’s future where it belongs, in the hands of voters. Many Americans do not like either candidate this year . We have criticized the presumptive Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, in the past and will do so again when warranted. But we do not believe that she (or the Libertarian and Green party candidates, for that matter) represents a threat to the Constitution. Mr. Trump is a unique and present danger.’
It is stunning to think what one must be willing to overlook in order to vote for this man.
The only way to stop this danger from becoming a reality is to vote in November. Vote for whichever candidate most aligns with your values, but vote. The future of our country depends on it.

... "The era of procrastination, of half-measures, of soothing and baffling expedients, of delays, is coming to a close. In its place, we are entering a period of consequences." - Winston Churchill, The Gathering Storm

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