The Barbarians Are Closer Than We think

There is a petty little argument put forward by Trump’s team that  makes clear one of their most serious shortcomings.

They complain repeatedly that liberals and especially the media are trying to delegitimize the election. Those who are not enthralled by Trump keep responding inappropriately by denying the charge. It is an endless and pointless battle.

What has gone wrong is that the Trump team has set the parameters of the conversation and the other side has allowed this to happen.

Here’s what I mean: Kellyanne Conway and the Trump team accuse the media of trying to prove that the election was illegal, though they misleadingly use the term “delegitimize.” The charge is patently false but it does no good merely to argue against it, since the Trump team has no regard for truth or good sense. The issue for which the press and others (myself included) is not that the election was somehow illegal but that Trump is not morally legitimate.

Trump is morally not fit for his office for many reasons, including:

  1. He has absolutely no regard for truth or morality, lying almost constantly and bragging about predatory behavior. He seems to think his own top-of-his-head and flippant remarks are good substitutes for knowledge. And his team thinks “alternative facts” are actually facts.
  2. He very obviously is more concerned with his own ego than with the good of the nation and the world which looks to us for leadership. That makes him immature and amazingly petty.
  3. He is mean-spirited and vengeful, using personal and utterly fake charm now and then to throw people off balance. His meanness is going to become more and more obvious as the resistance to him grows.
  4. He is clueless about what it means to be a president in a democracy, valuing the style of a tyrant above that of a democratic leader. Conservatives complained about Obama’s use of Executive Orders, even though he issued fewer than almost any president since WW II. When will they catch on that Trump thinks they are nearly the only tool he can imagine using?

And the list, of course, could go one. In fact, I suspect each day will bring further proof that he is a pretender in his office, a total fraud. In his first 6 1/2 days he has already disqualified himself from office.

What, then, does it reveal about the Trump team that they complain of the press trying to delegitimze Trump’s election? Their argument demonstrates that they are simply blind to moral values and can think only in amoral terms.

As an aside, I think it is cute — childish but cute — that Trump complained about a rigged election until he won. Then when the Green Party wanted a recount, he insisted that the election had been fair. Now, with his ego being challenged about the size of the crowd at his inauguration, he has decided there were in fact 3-5 millions illegal votes and that all of them went against him.

Again, this is revealing. First it reveals that he is guided by hubris and second it reveals that he has no interest in evidence, fact, or knowledge. But of course we’ve known that all along. And a third revelation is that Trump does not know the difference between registration and actual voting. Again, he is simply an ignorant man.

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About mthayes42

I am a retired pastor, interested in the Bible, cross-cultural ministries, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and the current and past history of western civilization.
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2 Responses to The Barbarians Are Closer Than We think

  1. I agree with everything you say, Mike, but I also wonder if this pettiness is not part of the strategy. Distract us all with his whining about unfair media coverage, his dissing of Meryl Streep, his harping on the “illegal immigrant voters” who denied him his rightful (and “huuuge”) majority, and while we’re focused on the ridiculous and the petty, he defunds Planned Parenthood, dismantles the Affordable Care Act, puts white supremacists in positions of power, restricts civil rights and free speech, and fills the pockets of his fellow soulless billionaires. While his immorality, narcissism, ignorance, and complete unfitness to be president are all abundantly true, I worry that we are playing this life-or-death game by his rules and letting him get away with murder—perhaps metaphorical now, but literal when it becomes advantageous to him.

    • mthayes42 says:

      I’ve often noticed that polite, considerate responsible people are at a serious disadvantage when dealing with scoundrels. We know what to do when they break the law but so long as they stay short of that, good people tend to be a bit helpless. It’s like boxing with someone who brings a chainsaw into the ring. But I do believe that justice and goodness will prevail, if only because people like Trump end up destroying themselves. If Republican leaders in Congress had any courage, Trump could be restrained from doing too much damage, but that doesn’t seem likely.

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