Most Americans avoid the topic, and you can see why: Half the country thinks Donald Trump was the worst president ever, while a good chunk of the other half want to see him back in the Oval Office. . So, between relatives and friends, it’s a delicate subject.
“Let’s not go” might be one of the most common phrases heard at family gatherings over the past seven years.
But I think we should go because, if you care about maintaining this democracy, you need to challenge those you like — or only kind of like — on their continued support for Trump.
It’s clumsy, you say, not to say totally hopeless. Why waste time?
I was pretty ok with that, until now. As a friend on the east coast of Maryland said after listening to Thursday’s prime-time hearing of the House Select Committee on Jan. 6: “Before tonight, I asked myself, ‘How could this become more damning for Trump? Yet, there it is. »
Evidence gathered by the committee shows Trump backed a dangerous and ultimately violent effort to overturn the results of the 2020 election he lost. The Proud Boys did not act alone. Trump encouraged the assault and did nothing to stop the Jan. 6 violence on Capitol Hill. For no other reason should such a man ever set foot in the White House again. Those who would like to see this must hear that it is a truly horrible idea.
Fox “News” won’t tell them, and they won’t hear it from the conservative radio stations or podcasts they listen to. All they’re going to hear is that January 6 was nothing, that Joe Biden is the worst president ever and something about Hunter Biden’s laptop.
Despite the odds of not changing our minds, we shouldn’t let this pass.
I’m writing this from Baltimore, in the blue state of Maryland, where it’s possible for a Democrat, Moderate Independent, or Republican Never Trumper to avoid a meeting with a Trump supporter altogether. And, even then, most of us are at a loss for words.
What do you say to a person – even a relatively reasonable person – who still thinks Trump is the man?
Here are four responses to common claims made by Trump supporters.
Biden is the worst president since Jimmy Carter.
Even if I agree with that, that’s not the point. Whether Biden is good or bad, you wouldn’t expect him to violate his oath to “uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” That’s the problem with Trump. He was the first president who refused to accept the results of an election and resisted the “peaceful transfer of power” to the next.
This is because there was widespread fraud during the elections.
Go on. You don’t really believe that, do you? There is no evidence of fraud and, based on what the House investigation found, many people told Trump there was no evidence of fraud in the weeks that followed. the elections. Yet he continued to push that line. So the basis of your belief is Trump’s saying. Is it good enough for you?
Let’s say you were on a jury in Baltimore for the trial of a guy accused of murder, and the prosecutor said the guy did it but didn’t provide any evidence. You wouldn’t take her word for it, would you? This would be an assertion and not a statement of facts. On the other hand, if you only watch Fox and don’t watch House hearings, it’s like you’re a juror ignoring the evidence and just trusting the defense attorney that his client is innocent. and victim of a corrupt prosecutor.
Democrats have already impeached Trump for Jan. 6 and have failed to convict him. They just try again.
You know why the Senate didn’t condemn: All but one Republican was afraid to counter Trump. It’s different this time. There has been a lengthy investigation and, at the risk of sounding like a civics professor, you owe it to your country to examine the evidence. Almost 50 years ago, when Richard Nixon was up to his neck in the Watergate scandal, the Republicans in Congress, members of his own party, saw the facts and told Nixon that they could no longer defend him. He had won the 1972 elections in a landslide, but had to resign two years later.
In Baltimore, Mayor Catherine Pugh, a Democrat, did something criminal, and no one stood up for her. I received a letter from a man who listed “good things Catherine Pugh had done for Baltimore,” and while that was a fair comment, it completely missed the point.
You might like a lot of what Trump has done in office — giving tax breaks to the wealthy and corporations, separating immigrant families at the border, pleasing Vladimir Putin — but that’s all beside the point. now. What happened on January 6 was a crime against democracy, and we should not elect a politician, a president, or his facilitators in Congress, who supported him in any way. There are other choices.
So what do you say, vote for Biden again?
No. It’s not about him. It’s about Americans acting like adults, coming to their senses, examining evidence and not accepting lies, acknowledging a real crisis and the possibility of it happening again. I don’t know if this reaches you, but at least I tried. Let’s have a cocktail.