The game of politics isn’t easy. The olympics that is presidential politics is infinitely tougher. Things are said and done in pursuit of keys to the Oval Office that demean the participants, exasperate the observers and leave the whole process that much less respectable. Donald Trump drags the whole process down to a whole new level.
The Big Apple billionaire builder isn’t afraid to use harsh rhetoric himself, as when he called Mexican immigrants illegally crossing the southern border “rapists” during his presidential announcement. Or when he interjected “Only Rosie O’Donnell” after Fox News’s Megyn Kelly said, “You’ve called women you don’t like fat pigs, dogs, slobs and disgusting animals,” during this month’s Republican debate.
But on Twitter, Trump continually lets others speak for him. In response to Jeb Bush speaking Spanish at a news conference on the border yesterday, Trump retweeted this bit of ignorance.
This comes more than a month after Trump retweeted and deleted this
Meanwhile, Trump’s “speaks Mexican” retweet Monday night came 12 minutes after he resumed his attacks on Kelly by retweeting a disparaging comment about her.
In any other context, Trump’s continual hectoring of Kelly would be considered bullying or sexual harassment. In either case, it’s unacceptable.
Folks like Trump because he is “refreshing,” “tells it like it is” and “speaks his mind.” But what he is doing is neither presidential nor becoming. And every time he whines about not bowing to “political correctness” to the delight of his adoring fans, what he (and his overwhelmingly white audiences) really mean is that they want the ability to insult anyone they damn well please without rebuke or censure for being vulgar, racist or rude. Perhaps that’s why someone felt perfectly comfortable yelling “white power” a few times during Trump’s rally in Alabama over the weekend.
Outrageous, inappropriate, vitriolic, xenophobic and racist statements that appeal to the basest instincts of the voting public have long been part of the political landscape at all levels of government. So Trump’s liberal use of angry and ignorant rhetoric is no shock. But that doesn’t make it right or okay to ignore.
Follow Jonathan on Twitter: @Capehartj