President Trump's critics get it wrong

February 8, 2018

I often ignore the current hair-on-fire responses to the latest Trump tweet until I see whether it will last beyond the next Trump tweet. These constant howls of outrage over everything Trump says and does are starting to make me feel like the owner of a dog that barks at everything. At some point, you stop leaping out of bed to see if there’s a burglar and just start fantasizing about kicking the dog. But in the past couple of days, there have been a couple of flare-ups that seem to have legs and illustrate larger points. So let’s take a closer look:

The latest wails of faux horror are over Trump saying that Democrats who sat on their hands when he mentioned the military or the flag were committing “treason,” and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly saying that Trump’s immigration plan would even help people who were “too lazy to get off their a**es” and apply for DACA. Democrats apparently don’t like being accused of treason (who knew?), and Kelly’s comment has the Hispanic caucus accusing him of racism.

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That’s something I take very seriously. Having grown up in Arkansas, I saw the evils of racism and segregation firsthand. In my state, it took a Republican President (Eisenhower) sending in the Army to force Democratic Gov. Orval Faubus to integrate the schools. As a kid, I watched the news of civil rights activists like the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. risking their lives to battle racism and segregation. Racism isn’t just an ugly personality trait, it’s an offense against God, who made all of us in His image. But just as racism should never be tolerated in our society, it is such a grievous sin that we should also be careful never to diminish its gravity by falsely accusing political opponents of it.

John Kelly is a retired US Marine General, steeped in the ultimate colorblind merit system. Saying that people who hadn’t done the most that they could do were “too lazy to get off their a**es” might be a racist comment – or it might be the kind of blunt language I’d expect from an ex-Marine commander. With a charge as serious as racism, and lacking any insights into what is in his heart, his critics should err on the side of caution. Condemn his words as unseemly or insensitive; but if you don’t have proof that he’s a racist, quit throwing around that verbal grenade as if it were a mudball.

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Likewise, Trump is constantly under fire for “outrageous” and “offensive” things he says or tweets that to me appear obviously to be jokes. In both these cases, the vocabularies and senses of humor (those of ex-Marine commanders and New York construction bosses) are certainly much less genteel than those of a former Baptist minister from Arkansas. I admit, that “treason” joke wasn’t one I’d do. It’s the kind of sarcastic jab typical of New Yorkers. But that doesn’t mean I assume these men harbor the most base and evil motives simply because they express themselves in a more…”colorful” way than I would.

Journalist Salino Zito hit the nail on the head when she observed that the media take Trump “literally but not seriously,” while his supporters take him seriously, but not literally. I don’t believe for a second that Trump seriously thinks it’s treasonous not to clap during his State of the Union speech. But I do believe that a lot of liberals fervently want people to believe he really meant it, so they’ll get too riled up to think straight and vote them back into power.

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Finally, for the record, it’s also hard for me to buy the pearl-clutching outrage act over and over and over, every time Trump makes an allegedly offensive joke. Especially when it’s coming from the same delicate souls who think Stephen Colbert and Samantha Bee are hilarious. Their comic idols have so normalized vicious attacks on the President as “humor” that Kathy Griffin was honestly stunned to discover that anyone thought holding up a replica of the President’s bloody severed head as a “joke” might be taking it a bit too far.

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Comments 1-5 of 50

  • Judi Hall

    02/16/2018 09:50 AM

    This outrage comes from the party of Obama who said the Republicans could come along if they wanted to but they would have to ride in the back of the bus. I don't think he was kidding.

  • David Erskine Cummings

    02/13/2018 09:03 AM

    Hi Mike, My red T-shirt w/pic of you with Bass guitar is worn out "holy"! ((( *[[1Th 5:27/KJVLite]]* I charge you by the Lord that this epistle be read unto all the holy brethren.

    *[[Col 4:16/KJVLite]]* And when this epistle is read among you, cause that it be read also in the church of the Laodiceans; and that ye likewise read the epistle from Laodicea.

    *[[Mat 26:30/KJVLite]]* And when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives.

    *[[Eph 5:19/KJVLite]]* Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;

    *[[Col 3:16/KJVLite]]* Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

    *[[Mat 18:20/KJVLite]]* For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

    *[[Rom 16:5/KJVLite]]* Likewise greet the church that is in their house. Salute my wellbeloved Epaenetus, who is the firstfruits of Achaia unto Christ.

    *[[1Co 16:19/KJVLite]]* The churches of Asia salute you. Aquila and Priscilla salute you much in the Lord, with the church that is in their house.

    *[[Col 4:15/KJVLite]]* Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his house.

    *[[1Ti 3:5/KJVLite]]* (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)

    *[[Phm 1:2/KJVLite]]* And to our beloved Apphia, and Archippus our fellowsoldier, and to the church in thy house:

    )))2xGod speed at 2.Jn. 7-12

  • James Bryant

    02/12/2018 08:44 AM

    Mike, I would seriously like to know why we have a black caucus and an Hispanic caucus. Isn't that racist in itself? If there were a white caucus the entire lib nation would be in an uproar.???

  • jay beacham

    02/09/2018 01:00 PM

    I totally agree.
    Never have I seen accusations about every thing the President does and says.
    What he eats, how his hair is, what he wears.
    It's getting more than ridiculous.

  • Richard Kanode

    02/09/2018 09:06 AM

    I regard the charge of calling someone a racist equal to calling someone the N word. Both make a judgement of a person's character. Unless we really know someone that judgement should not cross out lips.