OP-ED: Trump cheapens our election process
Donald Trump is not a problem. We are. Americans have become so desperate we will follow anyone who appears to be unlike the politicians we are convinced have failed us.
Someone in a political arena who does not act like a politician may be appealing, but it simply doesn't work. We may not like how tailors make our clothes but tailors are who know how to make clothing. Sharp businessmen, no matter how rich or successful, do not know how to make clothes. Nor do they know how to run countries. Politicians, whether we are fond of them or not, are the people that do.
In the case of "The Donald," a man so self-involved he revels in such a nickname, we have blinded ourselves to who we are admiring. This is a man who runs beauty contests and casinos, casts off trophy wives one after another and takes part in sleazy reality shows where he delights in declaring "You're fired!"
Trump shows no compassion, no insight or quality leadership; only arrogant, insulting attention-getting antics. We listen to him sounding off in debates like a strutting moose and think we are listening to wisdom. We call it "telling it like it is," when all we are doing is listening to a man who has been scripted to blow off hot air, something perhaps some of us have fantasized doing.
For some it may be satisfying for an evening's entertainment, but if we are ready to consider his histrionics as presidential material, we are nothing but blind sheep to his moose.
Have we cheapened our vision for this country so much that we have gone back to the ampitheaters of the gladiators, delighting in their blood sport? Have those chomping at the ballot bit for this man considered how his antics will play out were he to actually become "the leader of the free world," the man whose diplomacy may be all that stands between us and war? Have we envisoned Trump exhorting peace in the Middle East, waving around the private cell phone number of the prime minister of Israel or the leader of Hamas?
The truly scary thing is that folks like Trump, with his promising a new, fresh, charismatic, point-the-fingers-at-who-really-is-the-problem tactics. World history is peppered with the names behind the behavior of such as Trump. Fill in the blanks and it freezes the blood: Saddam Hussein, Osama bin Laden, Franco Mussolini — Adolf Hitler.
Trump needn't be another lunatic anti-Semite to lead us with promises of a better day when we get rid of the people who are "The Problem" — he is already close enough with his accusations that Mexicans are rapists and murderers. Who's next?
Please put away the "Trump toy" we are playing with. This is serious business. In a world where television and magazines celebrate the mounting atrocities of whoever is the famous flavor monster of the month, is it any surprise we would actually tolerate, much less cheer on, a Donald Trump for our president?
But is it too late to realize what depths we have dropped to before we allow it to go on? Because if we don't, then when "The Donald" drops out we will simply fill in the blank he leaves behind with another of his kind, some name history may not even remember — because it will be our end.