Y’all know I seldom wade into politics on this blog. I try instead to focus on what I know best, books. But sometimes something happens that is so beyond the pale that I feel compelled to speak out. This is one of those times. Yesterday, Donald Trump, while speaking at a rally, appeared to suggest to his supporters that they could stop Hillary Clinton by exercising their gun rights. Here’s what he said:
Hillary wants to abolish, essentially abolish the Second Amendment. By the way, and if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do folks. But the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don’t know.
Now his supporters and handlers are saying he meant that they could “unify” and get out and vote. But here’s why that just doesn’t wash. As he made this comment, he was talking about what could happen if Clinton were elected, at which point the election would already be over. I don’t believe he consciously meant to encourage any of his followers to go out and shoot Secretary Clinton. The problem is, as with his “sarcastic” comment urging Russia to find Clinton’s missing emails, he doesn’t think before he speaks. While most of his supporters are perfectly sane, rational people who are just fed up with Washington politicians, there are people out there who aren’t, and could view his remarks as a call to arms. Especially when he’s also called her “a monster”, “a devil”, and most recently along with President Obama “a founder of ISIS.” And, he has commented repeatedly that if she wins it means the election was “rigged”. In addition two politicians associated with his campaign have said Clinton is guilty of treason and should be executed. They’re playing a dangerous game that could have tragic consequences. I think most of the American people are sick and tired of partisan and corrupt politics. Most politicians realize they hold great sway over their constituents and take this responsibility seriously, but Trump and his surrogates seem to take great delight in encouraging a mob mentality. Can anyone who tuned into the Replicant Convention forget Chris Christie putting Clinton on trial accompanied by chants of “Lock her up!” by the delegates. As I watched absolutely horrified, all I could picture were the thousands of participants holding torches and pitchforks. I completely understand why Trump supporters are so eager to have an “outsider” win the presidency. But honestly, Donald Trump is not the right person. He has absolutely no self-control, and his ideas and rhetoric are dangerous to the extreme. While there have already been many prominent Republicans disavowing Trump, at some point the Republican Party as a whole needs to make a decision whether country or party is more important.