I remain a befuddled American patriot.
Donald J. Trump’s support among religious conservatives simply takes my breath away. I cannot fathom it. It’s real. I hereby concede that it’s solid and unbending.
The former Republican presidential candidate once boasted during the 2016 campaign that he could “shoot someone on Fifth Avenue” and not lose any votes, “believe me.”
You know what? I damn near believe him.
I had a private message exchange with a family member of mine. He’s a Trump supporter. He’s a young man of deep religious faith. He said he didn’t vote for Trump in 2016, but acknowledged that the president has earned his support because of his support for judicial candidates who will make abortion illegal, which is my family member’s threshold issue.
Fine. That’s his call.
What still baffles me is how anyone can presume that Trump actually believes in anything on an ideological level. He once was a pro-choice Democrat on the issue. Then he became a pro-life Republican. He’s also wavered, throwing his support behind Reform Party candidates. He’s all over the pea patch.
Does he believe in anything? Does he stand for anything? Does he possess any core values, other than the values associated with self-enrichment?
The Rev. Franklin Graham — one of the nation’s leading evangelical leaders — says the president’s philandering is no one’s business. His behavior with the porn star and the Playboy model don’t matter, according to Rev. Graham. But this man once said that Bill Clinton’s behavior was clearly the nation’s business.
Donald Trump has managed to do the near impossible. He has managed to redefine what one once considered to be deal-breaking episodes in a politician’s life. Telling a TV interviewer that he could grab a woman by her pu***? Hey, no sweat, man. His bragging about his marital infidelity? Big deal, dude. His declaring that he’s never sought forgiveness, which is a fundamental Christian tenet? Pfftt!
So, the president trudges on through these questions about corruption. All the while he conducts a scorched-Earth retreat policy that lays waste to the media that report on it. He calls the media the “enemy of the people.” He lays waste to the reputation of others who seek to find the truth.
It’s all OK with those on the far right, the members of Trump’s “base.”
Color me baffled.