Let’s face it. Donald Trump is not a likable person. I’m sure if he found it useful he could give the impression of real friendship, but in the end it would be foolish for anyone to rely on that friendship too highly.
Still, he has managed to shake things up in Washington which probably has something to do with why those who hate him, hate him with such vigor. Trump doesn’t think much about things like decorum and protocol. That’s no small thing in Washington, which until recently has been dominated by an “establishment” of politicians and bureaucrats who have ruled the nation pretty much undisturbed for decades.
Actually, the Establishment is every person and organization with a vested interest in maintaining the status quo in DC. Pelosi, Schumer and the like may be at the top of the pyramid — they have spent a life time building and defending the Washington power structure as it exists today — but certainly they are not alone in defending it.
This isn’t a right or left issue. Politicians on both parties are card-carrying members of the Establishment, as are a cadre of journalists, lobbyists, and government bureaucrats. All have a vested interest in making sure the way things work in Washington remains intact.
Trump is a threat to these people and organizations. He challenges and disregards longstanding “givens” and standards of conduct that the Establishment holds dear. He trashes the media, which today acts more like lobbyists than journalists. His disruption has reached across institutions and around the world. He’s taken on Europe, China, Russia, and rogue nations like Iran and North Korea. He hasn’t made many friends.
One thing to consider when deciding for whom to vote in November is whether this sort of disruption, on balance, is positive or negative. All I know is there are an awful lot of people in the Establishment who have been working overtime since before he was even elected trying to convince me Trump is one step below the Antichrist. When the Establishment reacts that strongly, it’s only prudent to wonder, why?
If Donald Trump isn’t a nice man, Biden seems to be making the argument the primary reason people should vote for him is because, he is. Given the nature of how things work in Washington, I’m not sure “nice” is the quality we need most in a president right now.
Besides, what’s nice? Is Nancy Pelosi nice? Is Jerry Nadler nice? Is Adam Schiff nice? Trump is what he is. He makes no effort to try to pretend otherwise. If you’re looking for someone who clothes their ugliness in a veneer of civility, there are plenty of other places to look. Pelosi, for example, loves to tout her Catholic upbringing. Really?
Reasonable people will disagree whether disrupting the way things have been done in Washington for decades is good or bad, and we all need to consider if we prefer that kind of disruption to the kind we’re seeing every night in cities like Portland and Seattle.
Personally, I’d prefer our cities remain intact rather than the Washington bureaucracy, and given the fact most people involved in the violence probably find Biden too moderate, I’m not sure it’s in our collective best interest to give these folks anymore influence than they have already. Burning down federal buildings and attacking police officers is hardly what the founders had in mind when they wrote the First Amendment.
Maybe President Trump isn’t the most agreeable person ever to occupy the White House, but then again, maybe a sugary personality isn’t what’s needed for the times we live in.
Chris Roemer writes from Finksburg. Reach him at email@example.com.
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