Thursday, July 26, 2018

Civility, Trump Division

Although twenty-four year old Austin Clay has turned himself into Beverly Hills police and as of this writing, is being held on $20,000 bail,this is bad:

President Donald Trump's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame was destroyed Wednesday morning by a man with a pickax that witnesses say he concealed in a guitar case, police said.

Officers were called around 3:30 a.m. to the star's location on Hollywood Boulevard near Highland Avenue, where they found a small pile of rubble in place of the star that Trump received in January 2007 for his role in the NBC show "The Apprentice."

This, however, is much worse:
Twitter wasn't impressed, with one person noting Donald Trump has "said multiple times he doesn't want to be associated with the 'Hollywood elites.'" Another remarked (including my slight adjustment) "I’m sure Crooked Hillary, Cryin’ Chuck, Pocahontas, Low IQ Maxine, Kenyan born Obama, and the journalists at CNN would disagree."  But the best by far.... I'll leave to the end.

Nonetheless, arguably Trump is at this worst when he inspires similar behavior as his own in other people, which occurs daily, as understood by Rick Wilson, who has written "Everything TrumpTouches, Dies," subtitled "A Republican Strategist Gets Real About the Worst President Ever." That nearly inevitable effect was demonstrated the other day when at a speech at a prominent Washington, D.C. university, Attorney General Jeff

Sessions criticized universities for "coddling our young people" and "actively preventing them from scrutinizing the validity of their beliefs."

"After the 2016 election, for example, they held a 'cry-in' at Cornell. I hope they had plenty of tissues for 'em to cry on," he said. "They had therapy dogs at the University of Kansas. Play-Doh and coloring books at the University of Michigan for heaven's sakes. You know, give me a break. Students at Tufts were encouraged to 'draw about their feelings.'"

"Well I can tell this group isn't going to have to have Play-Doh when you get attacked in college and you get involved in a debate," Sessions told the crowd attending Turning Point USA's High School Leadership Summit at George Washington University. "I like this bunch, I gotta tell you. You're not going to be backing down. Go get 'em. Go get 'em."

Then chants of "Lock her up" broke out.

"Lock her up," Sessions said, chuckling at the brief interruption from the audience as the chant then grew louder.

"I heard that a long time over the last campaign," he said before continuing with his prepared speech.

Interpretations of Sessions' response vary, and I believe he was merely trying to get beyond the moment so he could make his point(s), sure to be popular with a right-wing college crowd.  (He famously has recused himself from the Mueller probe, a decision which has made himself very unpopular with the President.) But "lock her up."

"Some would say," as Trump would say, that these are vile, detestable Trump fans. However, "childish" and "immature" probably would be more apt. Traditions like rule of law and crazy constitutional provisions like due process mean very little to individuals caught up in a personality cult. Consorting with La Cosa Nostra, turning the presidency into Trump, Inc., or paying off sex workers to shut them up are irrelevant because "Hillary" or "Obama" or "Democrats."

All of the above, however, is a mere prelude to repeating the best response of all to the tweet by Ronna McDaniel, daughter-in-law of a recent, unsuccessful Republican presidential nominee:

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