I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was planning to sneak into republican territory to try to gain a better understanding of their ideology … and why they still support Trump after all the death and destruction he has wrought. So far, I’ve been a bit slow in doing that, for I find I have a low tolerance for much of what I find on the Republican’s turf. Today, however, an opinion piece by conservative writer Hugh Hewitt, a Washington Post columnist, raised my hackles sufficiently that I had to address it. I won’t replay the entire piece, but you can find it over at The Washington Post if you feel so inclined. What I will do is address a few of his more ludicrous statements.
The title of Mr. Hewitt’s piece was telling in itself: “The case for Trump will come down to his record. It’s a strong one.”
I knew right then it was likely to make me growl, and I wasn’t disappointed. A few snippets from his column, with my responses in blue …
“With huge help from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Trump has put two justices on the Supreme Court, 53 judges on the federal courts of appeals, 144 and counting on the District courts, and more than 20 on the specialty courts. The Constitution has been buttressed.” Change the word “buttressed” to “battered”. I’m glad to see he assigns blame for this mess to McConnell, as well. No wonder ol’ Mitchie has an ever-expanding ego!
“Trump’s tax cuts, along with the massive deregulation he orchestrated, led to 3.5 percent unemployment until the regime in Beijing acted with criminal recklessness toward a virus that has devastated the world.” Trump’s tax cuts mostly went to the wealthy, and the unemployment was already low before Trump took office. He does not get credit for that. But more to the point … to blame China for “criminal recklessness” is the most ridiculous thing. China did not, contrary to the conspiracy theorists, manufacture the virus intentionally in a lab! The only ‘criminal recklessness’ that has led to more than 156,000 deaths in the U.S. was Trump’s horrific mishandling from day #1! And that ‘massive deregulation’ has contributed to the further destruction of our air, water, and wildlife on planet Earth.
“Trump took a military operating in President Barack Obama’s last years at about $600 billion and moved that budget by his third year to $738 billion, with more in the budget coming soon. The Navy necessary to meet China on the high seas, all 355 ships of it, is being planned and built.” Oh goodie … while people are homeless, going to bed hungry, and cannot afford health care, even more of our tax dollars are going to support an already over-bloated military so that we can start a war with China! I sure feel better, don’t you? The U.S. already has the largest military on the globe, and now we have a warmonger in the White House … what could possibly go wrong?
“Trump took the United States out of the unbalanced, absurd, doomed-to-fail Paris Climate Agreement and has instead focused on and delivered American energy independence. People have real job security in Pennsylvania as a result, if not in jetting off to Paris for follow-up seminars.” One commenter to Hewitt’s piece said she’d like to have some of what he’s been smoking … I agree. The environment is in real trouble and the Paris Accords were the last best hope for getting all nations to work together to try to preserve life on the planet, yet Mr. Hewitt is applauding Trump’s decisions that have made the extinction of most living species almost a certainty? Are you growling yet? And as for the coal industry in Pennsylvania … coal is on its way out, and nothing … nothing Trump can do is going to change that. Retraining the miners in another industry, such as renewable energy, would have been much kinder.
“Trump’s border wall, proceeding apace, makes obvious sense. More than 200 miles completed, with Trump tweeting Thursday the length with [sic] be 300 miles by September.” Of the 200 miles, only 3 miles is new, and the other 197 miles replaced existing border barriers. The funds to build this ‘wall’ have been hijacked from budgets earmarked for other, more important things. And the cost thus far has been over $15 billion. Further … the experts have shown that such a structure will not stop illegal immigration. More of our tax dollars wasted while children go to bed hungry at night!
“Trump has also stripped off the veneer of objectivity from the “fake news.” “Blue Bubble” journalists are the last to know the contempt in which they are held beyond the Acela corridor and outside Silicon Valley and Hollywood. They mistake their small audience share for success.” Seriously? ‘Small audience’??? The New York Times had, as of the 4th quarter last year, 3.43 million paid subscribers, and The Washington Post is estimated to have more than 2 million.
I read around 30 comments responding to Mr. Hewitt, and of those, only one was favourable to Mr. Hewitt, the rest calling his words ‘a spoof’, ‘laughable’, and more. The one positive comment simply said, “What a wonderful man.” Not a single comment that I saw supported Hewitt’s premises, and several pointed out a few of Trump’s worst blunders, including his handling of the pandemic that has led to so much unnecessary loss of life.
I went into this in hopes of gaining understanding, but with such views as Mr. Hewitt’s, I am left to wonder how right and left can move closer to understanding each other and finding common ground. How do we unite two sides that are so very far apart in their views and ideologies? Is it a lost cause, and are we doomed to be a nation so divided forever? If so, we will not remain a single nation for long, for the chasm in which we live today is untenable. The United States of America is not by any stretch of the imagination ‘united’ today.