Bully in the Pulpit

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Before anything else, Americans must demand that the Senate hold a real trial with real witnesses, on the conviction of Donald J. Trump for the constitutional high crimes and misdemeanors specified in the now passed articles of impeachment against him.

There is a lot of hatred in the world, and the history of America is no exception, racial hatred in particular. But in previous eras it was more cloaked, so to speak.

One of the most damaging impacts of having Trump in the White House is that he has given license to public expressions of hatred, and something never before so prevalent, sheer political hatred. Whatever our political disagreements, there has generally been some measure of comity in America, at least in the last century. But that’s all gone out the window with Trump’s incessant and vicious personal demonization of his political opponents.

Trump’s most fanatical supporters rant that anybody who has ever had a “D” after their name needs to be thrown into prison, no plausible grounds for indictment even required, do not pass Go. Their political policy positions are limited to what can be expressed with angry obscenities. And they are even now making murderous threats if they don’t get their way in the next election.

It is really no defense that certain members of the Republican Party are themselves victims of this monster bully. They quake in fear about a primary challenge in their own party if they don’t mutely endorse every vile thing Trump says or does. The days when Republicans presumptively had the courage of their convictions are long gone, assuming anything they did was ever not hypocritical. We cannot win by letting Trump the hateful turn us into America the hateful.

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