Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Sacred Cows


On Tuesday, President Trump maintained his "the bestdefense is a good offense" politics:



Keep in mind- as Trump or his Ghost Tweeter would put it- that the President herein does not defend his policy, instead blaming it on Congress and Democrats.

Keep it in mind, especially, upon reading the CNN Politics headline "Every living first lady has spoken out against familyseparation."

There are two problems with the headline.  The more obvious is that Mrs. Trump not only did not criticize the President's policy, she reinforced one of the media's continuing themes: both sides do it. She "hopes both sides of the aisle can finally come together..." She also wants a "country that follows all laws," which is one of the Administration's (misleading) talking points, and "a country that governs with heart," which the President himself has periodically advocated.

Far better were the statements of Mrs. Carter and Mrs. Bush. Mrs. Carter stated in part "the practice and policy today of removing children from their parents’ care at our border with Mexico is disgraceful and a shame to our country." Mrs. Bush wrote an op-ed for The Washington Post in which she observed "this zero-tolerance policy is cruel. It is immoral. And it breaks my heart. "

These two were the most eloquent and courageous responses of the five to a bad and very unpopular policy imposed by President Trump and Attorney General Sessions and carried out by Homeland Security secretary Nielsen. Then we come to the wives, one of them a presidential candidate, of the two most recent Democratic presidents.

Michelle Obama struck a bipartisan note, favorably retweeting a portion of Bush's article and added "Sometimes truth transcends party."  President Trump's policy was enacted in May, 2018 and differs substantially and significantly from the one imposed by Mrs. Obama's husband, who was condemned by Mr. Trump as "one of the worst Presidents ever," who "co-founded ISIS." As recently as late last year, Donald Trump doubted that Barack Obama was born in the USA. But "sometimes truth transcends party."





And "crooked Hillary," whom candidate Trump vowed would be incarcerated were he to become President, stated "what is happening to families at the border is horrific."

Like Mrs. Trump, Mrs. Bush, and Mrs.Carter, Mrs. Clinton and Mrs. Obama assiduously avoided mention of the name of the individual- Donald J. Trump- who is responsible for what appears to be, and what they (save possibly Melania) believe, is a ghastly policy.  It's understandable in the case of Melania (who should have remained silent), Republican Laura, and Rosalynn, who was First Lady over 37 years ago and, truth be told, is 90 years old. (I would say age is the elephant in the room but that would be partisan.)

None of the women uttered the words "Donald Trump," but otherwise give credit to Laura Bush and Rosalynn Carter. Melania Trump's remarks, which were not demanded by the media, politicians, or the public, were at best neutral. Given who they are, Michelle Obama and Hillary Clinton were no more impressive.

The bar is set low for former First Ladies, as CNN's headline demonstrates Two of them cleared it: two of them did not. The unimpressive remarks of those two might go a bit in explaining the current state of the Democratic Party.




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