Thursday, August 10, 2017

Fascinating, Confounding, Mind-Boggling

My position has changed a lot in the past 200 days. I started out, the day after Trump’s election, with hopeful (albeit skeptical) support. If you root for your homeland, you hope that its leaders do a good job. Even if everything they say and do indicates they are in way over their head.

The current presidency started out less the dry, boring, but competent government you mostly ignore and was more like the reality TV programing that is Trump’s true realm. In that sense, it was almost entertaining to watch, but more as a comedy of schadenfreude, a satire of itself.

But it has become less and less chuckle-inducing.

We had hoped that President Trump would differ from Candidate Trump. Candidate Trump was demonstrably a boisterous, bull-in-the-china-shop, incompetent, inexperienced, racist, misogynist, sexual-predator, thin-skinned, narcissist. Surely such an over-the-top character was just that… an act.

However, as the presidency has lurched and stumbled forward, we have only seen confirmation of the immaturity we saw in the candidate. I used to jokingly compare Trump to a cartoon version of a teen-aged girl. However, one of the more inciteful pieces written on Trump since he has been president was conservative columnist David Brooks’ column in May “When the World is Led by a Child.” He really is like an out of control child. And the scary truth is, we have gone from reality TV programing to an episode of “The Twilight Zone.” Specifically, “It’s a Good Life.”

It is time to break free of the tribalism in America that forces otherwise rational people to support Trump, not because he is right, but rather because he isn’t from the other side of the aisle. Conservative people do not need to join liberal ideologies to oppose Trump. He is a third rail of irrational, unpredictable behavior. He is not seeking America first, but rather Trump alone.

There is room in the opposition for more than one philosophy. Going forward, every faction of American politics should be about minimizing, checking and balancing, the damage that Trump is inflicting.

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