It's Getting Harder Every Day
Monday March 14, 2016
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Elite Washington is totally consumed by the political events over the past week. From Donald Trump cancelling a large rally in Chicago on security grounds, to video of a White (assumedly) Trump supporter cold-cocking a Black protester being led out of another rally, to Trump's campaign manager Cory Lewandowski allegedly grabbing and shoving to the ground a female reporter for Breitbart.com, Michelle Fields.
In all of that there was no mention of anyone else. Especially not anyone else named Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, or John Kasich.
As he has since last Summer, Trump - whether by design or happenstance - has dominated the political news channels on TV, the front pages of America's newspapers, and the conversations of the Inside-the-Beltway pundit class.
Bernie Sanders got some airtime, but only to deny that his campaign was behind building a crowd of protesters in Chicago against
Like that old punchline without a set-up: "But, enough about me. Let's talk about you. What do you think of me?"
In spite of his denials, there is no question that Donald Trump has a great deal of responsibility for the decline of civility in this election cycle. A great deal, but not all.
President Barack Obama has done little or anything to sooth jangled nerves among the races. He has chosen sides in disputes without any evidence to support his position and has yet to apologize for making a bad situation worse when the facts have shown him to be wrong.
Hillary Clinton has specifically built her campaign along racial parameters. All day today you will hear here she will do better and where she may do worse based solely on the percentage of minority voters likely to vote in the Democrat primary.
Ted Cruz is not racist, but his treating the Constitution like it was written, not on paper but carved onto stone tablets leaves little room for the gray areas in which most of us live our lives.
Bernie Sanders' constant harping the haves vs the have nots certainly does nothing to lower the temperature of the conversation.
Super PACs have taken what we used to call "negative ads" and turned them into political poison. With no candidate - by law - being able to rein them in, they are free to act on their darkest motives.
And back it up with a couple of million dollars in TV time.
But it is Donald Trump who has raised menacing oration to new political heights - or lowered them to new political depths. "I get along with everyone," he says, "but, if someone hits me, I hit them back harder."
Who would have thought that would be a cheer line in a stump speech?
While I am certainly no expert in this area, it seems to me that the whole Matthew 5:39-40 business has been totally missed by to many of our political leaders over the past decade or so.
Since I first got into politics I have been schooled in the ideal that we settle our campaigns with ballots, not bullets.
If I were overseas doing a political lecture in this atmosphere, I might still say that, but not with the same base-line certainty I've said it in hundreds of such lectures previous.
Asking Donald Trump or Barack Obama to be more careful about their use of language is a waste of time. As the scorpion said to the frog, "It's in their nature."
Not only is it in their nature, but both would easily pass lie detector tests by answering "No" to the question: "Do you agree you are adding to voters' unease in American politics?"
Over the weekend, Sen. Rubio, looking very much the worse for wear, was asked if he is still standing by his pledge in the most recent debate to support the GOP nominee no matter who it was.
"At this moment I continue to intend to support the Republican nominee. But," Rubio said shaking his head sadly, "it's getting harder every day."
Lad Link: A brilliant essay on this week's campaigns by Reed Galen (@ReedGalen) HERE
On the Secret Decoder Ring page today: A link to the video of Marco Rubio's statement and to the King James Bible version of Matthew 5:39-40.
Also a Mullfoto proving Spring is on its way to Old Town Alexandria, Virginia.
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