In his Dec. 27 op-ed, "My New Year's wish for Trump: Respect the haters, too," Gary Abernathy demonstrated the vacuity of the reasons for the continued support of President Trump. He wrote, "I want Trump to continue to 'drain the swamp,' enforce immigration laws, undo Obamacare, cut costly regulation, put America first and even criticize journalists when their zeal to be the first to break unfavorable news about him results in inaccurate or poorly vetted stories." Mr. Abernathy expounded empty slogans, not material policies, slogans that ignite the amygdala of the human brain rather than stimulate the reasoning functions of the frontal lobe.
I'm not a hater of Mr. Trump, and I accept that he is president of our nation, but I am considerably uneasy that he displays no skill at governing a great democracy. No amount of shallow arguments by his defenders can disguise this fundamental defect.
Frank W. Fletcher, Reedville, Va.
After reading Gary Abernathy's latest paean to the president, I am not sure which is worse: that he is the editor of a news publication or that he was invited to meet with graduate students at the Columbia Journalism School in New York.
When I read about his full-throated support for the repeal of Obamacare, I could only wonder what his local subscribers think, based on the following two facts: Ohio is second in the nation in drug overdose deaths and, in 2017, Ohio was one of the main beneficiaries of Obamacare. As noted in a February Cincinnati Enquirer article: "The decline in the rate of uninsured was staggering: In 2008, 36.1 percent of the poorest Ohioans had no health insurance. As of 2015, the number was 14.1 percent — nearly a 61 percent drop."
Malcolm Wilson, Silver Spring
Gary Abernathy closed his Dec. 27 op-ed by expressing his wish that the president "lead by example when it comes to respecting those who oppose him." It would be better if Mr. Abernathy wished for the leopard to change its spots.
Don Boselovic, Vienna
In his Dec. 27 op-ed, urging President Trump to "respect the haters," Gary Abernathy utterly distorted the essence of the Trump presidency. Mr. Trump, he says, should continue to "drain the swamp," "enforce immigration laws" and "criticize journalists" but show respect. Really? His apparent blindness to our president's chronic lying, justice obstruction, immorality, narcissistic impulsiveness, immigrant-bashing, press-attacking and acquiescence to authoritarian leaders places Mr. Abernathy among the alt-propagandists of the new alternate reality.
Ralph Ibson, Washington
It is ironic for Gary Abernathy to imply that everyone who doesn't like President Trump should support him regardless, simply because he is the president, by suggesting that he personally didn't like President Barack Obama yet still "supported" him, whatever that means.
Mr. Obama tried to be the president for everyone in the country, while Mr. Trump is concerned only with his base. Mr. Obama was attacked from Day One by Republicans, who refused to work with him in any legislative capacity and routinely stymied his efforts to repair the economy.
Mr. Abernathy conveniently forgot that Mr. Trump launched his candidacy by relentlessly attacking Mr. Obama and questioning his legitimacy as president.
Richard Huntley, Austin
With all due respect to Gary Abernathy, he is just plain wrong in his claim regarding Donald Trump's presidency. True, Mr. Trump won the electoral college vote, but he did not get the majority of votes. Indeed, as Mr. Abernathy noted, Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton got almost 66 million votes; Mr. Trump, 63 million.
When it comes to electing the president, the fact is that every vote does not count. This does not apply to any other elected position — the person who gets the most votes gets elected to office. The electoral college is an anachronism.
Sorry, Mr. Abernathy. Despite having legally won the electoral college, Mr. Trump is not the true, morally legitimate president (and he knows it).
Bruce Bernstein, Rockville