Tuesday, September 6, 2016

The Essential Cowardice of Donald Trump


(Mod: Some interesting observations from The Atlantic - link.)

Crusaders against “political correctness” often portray themselves as brave. They deride others for knuckling under to left-wing orthodoxy, for being too afraid of African Americans, Latinos, feminists, and gays to speak the truth. They, on the other hand, speak their mind, come what may.    

No presidential candidate has used this conceit more effectively than Donald Trump. His supporters love his willingness to say things about Mexicans, Muslims, and African Americans that ordinary politicians won’t say for fear of being called a bigot. That’s part of what they mean when they say he “doesn’t talk like a politician.”

But over the last couple of weeks, Trump has illustrated something important about the anti-politically correct. They’re most comfortable confronting PC orthodoxy when the people they’re confronting aren’t around. Once they actually encounter African Americans, Latinos, and other minority groups, they become a lot less brave.

In an effort to soften his image, Trump has recently begun doing something he previous avoided: Talking to blacks and Latinos. Two weeks ago, he met with his Hispanic advisory council. According to media reports, he was “humble” and “conciliatory.” Did he call for deporting the undocumented immigrants already in the US, as he has repeatedly promised his overwhelmingly white crowds? Nope. According to Jacob Monty, who attended the meeting, Trump said “deporting them is neither possible nor humane.”


Then, last week, Trump flew to Mexico City to meet President Enrique Peña Nieto. Did he repeat the pledge that brings white crowds to their feet: That Mexico will pay for a wall along the two countries’ border? Nope. Beforehand, the two sides agreed not to discuss the subject. When Peña Nieto brought it up anyway, and announced that Mexico would never foot the bill, did Trump set him straight? Nope. Rudy Giuliani, who was attending the meeting on Trump’s behalf, reportedly declared the topic “off the table” and The Donald moved on to less controversial subjects.

When Trump appeared publicly with Peña Nieto after their meeting, he again “avoided direct confrontation,” in the Washington Post’s words. He called it a “great, great, honor” to be invited to the country he has repeatedly trashed during the campaign. And he declared that he had “tremendous feelings” for the “tremendous” Mexican American people, a group he famously derided as rapists and drug dealers in his announcement speech.

But once Trump left Mexico and addressed an overwhelmingly white, anti-immigrant crowd that evening in Arizona, the Post noted, he ditched his “subdued and cooperative tone” and “returned to the aggressive tenor that has defined much of his campaign. Repeatedly raising his voice to a yell, he said that ‘anyone who has entered the United States illegally is subject to deportation.’”

The oscillation continued this weekend, when Trump addressed an African American congregation in Detroit. “Trump’s subdued rhetoric,” noted Politico, “was a jarring contrast to his typically boisterous rallies.” The Republican nominee said nothing about Black Lives Matter being responsibility for the murder of police, as he had told Bill O’Reilly. He didn’t imply, as he has to white audiences, that African Americans are prone to voter fraud. He said nothing about Barack Obama not being born in the United States. He didn’t repeat his claims that blacks should vote for him because their lives are so miserable that they have nothing “to lose.” Instead, he flattered his audience, calling black churches “the conscience of our country,” which had inspired America “toward a better moral character, a deeper concern for mankind, and spirit of charity and unity that binds us all together.” Trump’s remarks, noted the Post, constituted a “jarring shift in tone and message.”

This isn’t surprising. Even more than most politicians, Trump lives for the approval of the crowd. His ego is so overdeveloped, and his ideological convictions so underdeveloped, that it’s hard to imagine him walking into a room and saying things he knows his audience doesn’t want to hear. But Trump isn’t alone. Put Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly, or most of the other conservatives who have made a career of being anti-PC in a small room with Latinos, African Americans, or Muslims and I suspect their rhetoric would dramatically soften, too. It’s harder to speak bluntly and nastily about people when they’re staring you in the face. It’s also harder because when you actually listen to them, they often defy your stereotypes. Up close, their grievances become harder to dismiss.

I’m glad Trump is now speaking to more diverse crowds. I’m glad because, in so doing, he’s proving that when it comes to “political correctness,” conservative politicians and pundits aren’t more courageous than their liberal counterparts. They’re just more isolated from the ethnic and racial minorities about whom they speak. When the distance disappears, the “bravery” does too.

sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

42 comments:

  1. I would hazzard to guess the author of the article is white? The writting has tones of "whiteness". What does the writter mean by "ordinary politicians " ? The author must mean "white" politicians; since no one of "color" is in the mix. "Does't talk like a politicians". Everyone understands that "he"can't be bought at any price; that is unless you are writing an opion and not a news article that is researched and can be backed up. The famously derided words can't be produced, as they were mis- quotes from the "wana-be-journalist" society. Liberals arn't "brave" when it comes to minorities, "they" shout louder and make assumptions.
    The last time "i" checked "we" humans all bleed red. I believe we should all should put Americans first; since this is an American election.

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    1. Not into the whole "normalize racism" marketing so many Trumpets are pushing. But if that works for you, go for it. Wouldn't want to make you paranoid or something.

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    2. I may not be politically correct because I state facts that many are afraid to say. For example, our class sizes would be smaller if the children that are in this country illegally were not in our schools. Our ballots should be in English only as also our driving tests. You should have to prove you have the right to vote. Drug tests should be required of welfare recipients, Finally fat people slould be fined for wearing spandex.

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    3. 6:49, the author is Peter Beinart. Beinart is a descendant of Egyptian and Russian jews. No doubt the fact that he is a Rhodes scholar, among many other accomplishments, will offend you.

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    4. put america first by putting trump last

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  2. Wonder how The Atlantic will spin the "brown President" of the Philippines calling the "brown President" if the United States; a "son of a whore? Will the Atlantic report this as a "brown and Presidential" statement/opion? Or will the Press ignore?

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    1. The president of the Philippines apologies today. Go to Google News and seek enlightenment.

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    2. Apology not accepted. Done only due to pressure from within.

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    3. Rodrigo Détente is the Donald Trump of the Philippines.

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    4. He kills people in the streets that he suspects are drug dealers. Hundreds of them. Rodrigo is not always correct with his summary executions.

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  3. Manipulated Benghazi. Senator Menadez (D.) was wired to feed questions to Hillary.
    WSJ OP-ED: emails raise concerns of Integrity in Government. Civil Service was missing in action. Being held to the highest possible standard; non - existing.

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    1. Still whining about that crap? A marathon not a sprint, eh?

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  4. 275 days of avoiding the press, Hillary said she will take a few questions; soon.

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    1. what do you want her to talk about?

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    2. She does not have to talk about anything. Just let the press ask her questions. That is what a press conference is about.

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    3. She's smart not to waste time with the press

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  5. Go to Google news :CNN; poll lists Trump up by 2 points ahead of Clinton.

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    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    2. New Reuters poll shows Clinton up 8 points.

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  6. As usual, the Atlantic leads with intelligence. Not something Trump or his supporters will recognize or respect.

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  7. Mexico's President Pena Nieto blamed the United States for all of the drug running and gun smuggling; because of the lack of a wall/boarder, causing all of his countries problems.

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    1. Best laugh of the day. So far.

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  8. OK thanks I didn't know that. Guess I missed Druge that day.

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  9. Bleach bit; bleach bit, her personal server with State secrets (C) kept at her home. Not 1, but 13 Blackberries destroyed by hammer. Hit the re- set button again and again; Plead the 5th; can't recall 39 times what she said...no wonder "she" gets all chocked up.

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    1. I gave Roger Ailes your phone number. Wear something nice.

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    2. Greta Van Sustern is leaving Fox News. All the women there are either quitting or suing. Or both.

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    3. Keep it up! It's the only way your party will win!

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  10. Why do you people keep spelling write and border incorrectly? I drives me crazy!

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  11. 11:47. Why do you insist on English as a first language? Iam trying. The spell check must not care on what is correct,nor does it correct bad grammer. Thank you - i will make notes.

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    1. Because this blog is in English. And readers might take your argument more seriously if you looked like you knew what you were posting

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  12. 11:20 am. Is'nt Bill Clinton another Rhodes Scholar? The State Department has Monica's blue dress; but possibly Roger won't mind.

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  13. Is Brexit heading toward border control?
    The voting trend in Europe appears to be heading in this direction. What can the United Nations do? NOTHING.

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  14. Both canadates should release information on their health, as a reassurance to the public as to their fitness to hold office. Hillary's coughing episode lasted four and a half minutes.

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    1. Trump's delicate mental state is a concern for many.

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    2. 25 seconds actually but 25 seconds is a long time. Some of us actually read the article........

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    3. Putin's Parrots aren't famous for having long attention spans.

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    4. Fitness is not a requirement for office.

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  15. 41/2 minutes yesterday when giving talk and spit her cough drop back into her glass of water; today? 25 seconds? Ok....

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    1. More proof that Trump supporters are ridiculous idiots.

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  16. 12:05. FOX News Woman. One is leaving to begin her PhD.; another for more money the other received 20 mil. In settlement

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    1. Serial molester Roger Ailes is receiving $40 million. Interesting pay scale at Fox Rape News.

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