“It is so nice that the shackles have been taken off me and I can now fight for America the way I want to.” – Donald Trump via Twitter, 10:00 a.m., 11 October 2016
Shackles? What shackles? He has not done what the Republican Party leaders have wanted him to do since day one, he has toed no line, and has been a major embarrassment to the party. So … what shackles? This is reminiscent of his statement a few months ago that he was “taking off the gloves”. I asked then … what gloves?
Trump’s ‘shackles’ comment came in response to a number of republican congressmen and governors who, in the wake of the Trump video tape uproar, have begun to distance themselves from him, refusing to campaign with him and refusing to defend him. Most notable among these are Senators Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan.
If the Donald Trump we have been seeing for the past 16 months had on gloves and shackles, what might a bare-handed, shackle-free Donald Trump look like? The Trump we have been seeing has one of the worst personalities I have ever seen. Jeffrey Dahmer was probably a nicer person than Trump! But what really has me puzzled is the fact that, despite all his cruel, crude talk, despite the recent video tape release, even people who were horrified and disgusted continue to rally around him. I have a few theories here (surprised, aren’t you?).
The first possibility is that people, once committed to something, are reluctant to give it up and admit they were wrong … it just goes against human nature. My recent adventure of getting lost last weekend is a point in case. At one point (maybe at several points, actually) I was fairly certain that I was on the wrong road. Actually, since I was supposed to be on 119, and for miles the signs had been saying I was on 66, I should have been absolutely certain I was on the wrong road! But alas … I kept going … and going … because maybe the signs were wrong? Or maybe 66 would turn back into 119? I simply refused to believe I had made such a huge mistake, so I kept going until I ended on a dirt road and had absolutely no choice but to admit I had erred.
So, it stands to reason that people who got caught up in the initial Trump-mania, though their adolation must be somewhat frayed and tarnished by now, are unwilling at this late stage of the game to make that 180° turn and go back. It is humiliating, their friends might mock them, and most importantly, they would then have to question how they allowed themselves to be drawn in by such a madman. So, they stay the course, argue their points, and tell their conscience to “shut up and go away”. Y’know … the conscience is a funny thing. If you keep the noise level inside your head loud enough, you do not hear your conscience. You only hear it when you are quiet. This may explain why Trump supporters are so loud and obnoxious … they have to be in order to drown out the voice of their own conscience.My second theory, which is a bit darker in nature, is that the citizens of this nation have become inured to some of the hateful things that Trump stands for, such as sexual assault. When the now-infamous videotape was made public last Friday afternoon, there was a wave of horror. Women, especially, were highly offended, and if anybody had asked any woman within 15 minutes after she viewed the video, she would likely have called Trump a monster. But, as the days passed, people started finding excuses for Trump, calling it ‘locker-room talk’, saying that it was, after all, 11 years ago, and after all … Trump loves America. Remember Brock Turner? You say “the name rings a bell, but I cannot quite remember ….” Right. He was the young Stanford college student who drugged and raped a young woman after leaving a party on campus in January 2015. He was sentenced to six months, released from prison after only three months, and has now been relegated to the annals of history. Put him out of your mind and move on. Just another sexual assault case. Statistically, a woman has a 1 in 6 chance of being sexually assaulted at some point in her life. It is an everyday occurrence, and I wonder if we have just come to accept it as a ‘normal’ part of life in the U.S.? Thus, when we hear about somebody who would kiss a woman or grope her inappropriately against her will, do we shrug our shoulders and say “eh, boys will be boys”?
Those are my two theories, but one of my Idiots of the Week, Katrina Pierson, has her own theory:
“But I do quite [sic] find it rich that we have Democrats and the left talking about rape culture, when they’re the ones backed fully by Hollywood. This rape culture is purported [sic] by none other than the entertainment industry, none other than hip-hop music, which you can hear on local radio stations.” – Katrina Pierson
And now we remember why Ms. Pierson was awarded the Idiot of the Week award back in August.
Whatever the reason, hardcore Trumpians are still defending Trump, still making excuses for his behaviour, and I still do not quite understand it. I stand by what I wrote yesterday, however, when I said that any woman who will vote for Trump has no self-esteem. Still, Trump has gone down in the polls while Clinton has come up in the polls, and is now 6.5 points ahead of Trump, as compared to 3.9 last Friday. Clinton is also now projected by RCP to be only 10 electoral votes shy of the needed 270. So, apparently some are shedding their lemming-skin and opting to return to the real world, albeit reluctantly.