Monday, December 28, 2015

The two women who enabled Donald Trump

One of the great mysteries of our age is how Donald Trump has maintained such a decisive lead in the polls for so long.  You'll get your odd outsider who will capture a fair amount of attention, and even support, for a while.  It happens.  Al Sharpton once garnered an embarrassing amount of support during the primary season.  While not as much as Trump, any support for Sharpton is embarrassing.

But the Don has baffled critics and observers for months.  Of course part of it is the round the clock, 24/7 coverage he has been given.  For many, he is about the only name they know right now.  But it's more than that.  Despite his Bulworth approach to politics, he remains immensely popular.  And it isn't only uneducated racist white guys.  Women, minorities, successful professionals all seem to flock to him.

WTH!?  My boys, in discussing this, mentioned something that, with a little refining, I will repeat.  There are two women who explain Donald Trump and his support.  Kathryn Steinle and Kim Davis.  Kim Davis is probably known well enough.  The Kentucky clerk who took jail time rather than back down on her refusal to approve gay marriages.  Kathryn Steinle might be less of a household name.  She is the young woman who was murdered by an illegal immigrant who was hiding under San Francisco's lenient immigration policies.

Now, does this mean Davis going to jail and Steinle's tragic murder are the cause?  No.  What my boys noted was the substance of the debate that went on around these events.  For Davis, it was the growing confidence that the progressives had when explaining why they were darn glad she went to jail, and why 'homophobes' going to jail is a good thing.

For Steinle, it was the racism of the age, in which many across the Internet invoke collective guilt, as they have during the entire immigration debate itself.  Whenever fears for the safety of Americans are mentioned, it seems someone brings up the fact that 'their ancestors screwed the Native Americans.'  That's a bit like blaming them for the actions of the past, isn't it?

Now, imagine turning that around.  Imagine saying that someone who supported gay marriage was imprisoned, or that Jews shouldn't complain because, after all, look what their ancestors did to Jesus.  See that? One of the ways to see if something is evil or racist is to replace names or ethnic groups with others and see if it still flies.  If it is wrong to blame all Jews for Jesus, isn't it no less wrong to tell Americans they more or less deserve what they get due to their skin color and the skin color of those who committed vile acts in the past?  If it's wrong to imprison someone for supporting gay marriage, wouldn't it be equally wrong in our country to jail them for the opposite?

Not that those who say these things necessarily have a 'serves them right' attitude.  Though I am at a loss as to just what they mean when they say it.  And it isn't just some radical on MSNBC or an obscure radical Leftist site that I see such things.  Davis's incarceration was supported and defended on mainline media, and even on Catholic websites I saw the 'look what your ancestors did to Native Americans' comeback.

So given that imprisonment and even murder are so flippantly dismissed, if not outright supported, it's not surprising that many see a growing threat and flock to the one man they think has the stones to stand up to these forces of evil and bigotry and oppression. And his supporters are not just those in the target demographics.  They also include those who are not white or even against gay marriage, but are smart enough to know that if this oppressive movement continues to gain steam, who knows what other groups will eventually be the targets.

I don't know.  But it's an observation and one I think that has merit.

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