In America, Trump Is Not the Problem, We Are: Guest Writer

In America, Trump Is Not the Problem, We Are: Guest Writer May 31, 2024

Below is from my good friend, Matt Graham. He allowed me to share his recent take on former president Donald Trump. Think what you will about Trump, but Matt does make some valid points.

Regardless of what you think of Donald Trump you should ask yourself why so many people like him. If your answer is “they like him because they are a bunch of racists” then you haven’t thought about it enough.

To the right, Trump is an anti-corruption candidate. He is the political rights means of revolution. He is a patriot who is taking the brunt of the wrath of the deep state and corrupt mono-party in Washington DC. With each attempt to bring Trump down, Trump supporters are further convinced that Trump is right about the level of government corruption.

To the left, Trump is a dictator along the lines of a Hitler or a Stalin. He is a half-wit, racist, philanderer who has tricked half the country into following him or he has revealed that half of the country is composed of evil people. Given the opportunity, he would take over the government and impose some sort of autocratic rule over the citizens of the United States and destroy relations with all our allies abroad.

These are the lines that political actors and news media outlets have drawn and it’s not surprising that these ways of seeing Trump are so broadly adopted.

My take:

Trump is not a half-wit racist even if he is a philanderer. In some ways he is a horrible communicator. But in other ways, his way of communicating is nothing short of brilliant. He paints his political opponents with whatever brush he wants and no matter how silly it is it somehow seems to stick.

He attacks friend and foe alike which means he is willing to obtain his ends by whatever means necessary. This is appealing to those on the right as they have felt politically bullied for a long time, especially since Obama took office. And the right has been dumbfounded by Republicans who make political promises only to drop the ball time and time again. Trump’s personality of “This is what I’m doing no matter who disagrees” fully resonates with those on the right who are tired of the direction the country is going in.

Trump will not be able to unify the country. He is not that sort of person. He is the hired gun to take out political opponents. This approach is necessarily alienating to the left. But the right doesn’t really care at this point. The political right and left have long stopped caring about alienating the other side.

Trump does concern me in many ways, but charges of being a Hitler are too over the top. And yes, I do realize that there are parallels, but there are parallels between Hitler and Reagan. A few parallels don’t entail a moral equivalence.

The left and the right have been growing increasingly hostile to each other at least as long as I can remember. But lest we think the monsters are in Washington DC, we need to remember that these people are (to the degree that we have influence) reflections of us. WE are divided. It is only fitting that we have divisive political leaders.

I don’t think there is a political solution to our problems. I’m not saying we shouldn’t vote, of course we should. I’m just saying, I don’t think the political arena is the ultimate court of appeal. We need a revival. The people of the United States of America need to be fixed.

Thank you!

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