We all know someone in a relationship that some would consider abusive or, at the very least, unhealthy.
No matter how many times we intervene with our programmed predetermined ideas of compassion and comfort, our views and opinions are, more times than not, pushed aside or reflected back at us in harsh words of rebuttal. We hear words like “it’s not that bad” or “but I love him/her” and even at times told to mind our own business. What we come to realize is that sometimes our well-meaning intentions only intensifies the defense of the abused in an abusive relationship.
Regarding Donald J. Trump, I can’t help but feel that something similar must be going on because, with respect to those supporters, everyone can see that he is a deeply flawed presidential candidate. I do, however, recognize that there still remains many honorable Republicans who choose to put country before party like Ohio Gov. John Kasich; Richard Armitage, deputy secretary of state under George Bush; Brent Scowcroft, the former Republican national security advisor, along with more than 100 Republican and Democrat national security advisors. For the first time in 75 years, The Dallas Morning News endorsed a Democratic candidate.
When things seem to go a bit wrong, our easy escape is to point fingers at someone whose stature is not as prominent and whose voice is not as strong. Mr. Trump has given permission to those who like to point, the opportunity to rise from their dark agendas and dark places that were once part of the American past.Americans with brown or black skin, many with a funny last name, are now targeted as being the enemy.
His supporters have used extensive arguments supporting positions that may not tell complete truths, stating, for example, that the labor participation rate is lower now than at anytime in history. The complete story would reveal that the labor participation rate has been going down for the past 40 years and will continue to do so, as more Baby Boomers retire and more working age students enter into institutions of higher learning.
If Trump really believed in America first, he would have his products made in America instead of having off-shore productions, where minds are weak and the labor is cheap.
His supporters have told us numerous times about the horrors of Benghazi, an investigation that Republicans publicly stated was designed to bring Clinton’s poll numbers down. They have failed to inform the public about all the previous times Americans have died in consulates and embassies, dating as far back as 1924, including a 1983 bombing in Beirut Lebanon when Ronald Reagan was president, which took 17 American lives.
Trump has said our military has been depleted to nothing under this president, when in fact we spend more than $600 billion a year on our military budget, which is more than the next seven largest countries combined.
They go on to remind us that 70 percent of Americans think we are on the wrong path in this country, while forgetting that two of the three branches of government are in Republican control.
Trump shouts out that there is a “Nightmare on Main Street” but offers no real solutions to curb the problem, not even blocking those on the terrorist watch list from obtaining weapons, and still his predominate message to America is to be afraid. Fear-based messaging has one goal, and that is to let that fear influence every decision that you make in your life.
Americans are told to trust in Trump to be your savior because he alone can fix it. Those words are not new words; they have been spoken before by people such as Hitler and Mussolini.
He has portrayed Muslim-Americans as being unfit to be an American despite the fact that they have served this country on the frontlines all over this world in the name of patriotism, something Trump failed to do. He likes to brag about receiving more votes in the primary than any other Republican while failing to mention that he had more Republicans voting against him than any other Republican as well.
“We hold these truths to be self evident that all men are created equal” were words written by immigrants from long ago, which is why I could never support a naturalized American bigot like Trump while, at the same time, support a Muslim father and mother whose only son gave his life for this country.
So before you shake your head in disbelief as to why your friend or relative stays in an unhealthy relationship, please give me a reason to stop shaking mine as I look to you and your relationship with Trump as he touts the greatness of the Russian government.
Your support for Donald Trump doesn’t make a statement about his greatness, his wealth or his political prowess. What it does do, however, is make a statement about you, your character and your beliefs.
It’s been said that the greatest good you can give to another is not just to show your riches but to reveal to another his own riches. If Trump only understood that individual riches begin with respecting our fellow man, and the wealthiest among us can still be left with a soul and a conscience that will still leave one bankrupt as well.
Charles Thomas is a former Allen County juvenile probation officer and a lifelong resident of Lima. Reach him at [email protected]