(Don't Fear) The Trumper
People alarmed at the prospect of a Trump administration need to show a little more faith in democracy
KELLYANNE CONWAY is going to be one busy girl.
If you think my deliberate use of the word "girl" makes me a retrograde sexist, stop reading. Nothing else I say will break through your Politically Correct deflector shields.
Conway is the Jersey girl - born in Camden, now of Alpine, N.J. - who is Trump's campaign manager and writes the speeches that make him sound normal and occasionally rewrites his history. She broke a glass ceiling by becoming the first woman to manage a winning presidential campaign. Her words provide the Valium for those afflicted with Trumpophobia.
Let's agree on some facts: Of those who bothered to vote (the 43 percent who didn't should shut up), half wanted Donald Trump to be president - or at least didn't want Hillary Clinton. It's hard to call all of them sexist because Trump won 53 percent of working women. These are facts, whether you like them or not.
Here's another: Donald Trump - alone - did the near-impossible. The real-estate magnate/reality-show star did what political behemoths could not: He destroyed two political dynasties many of us were sick of: Bush in the primaries and Clinton in the general election. He was a wrecking ball, as Miley Cyrus might sing.
A self-described Happy Hippie, Cyrus broke into well-tweeted tears after's Clinton's loss, but then (probably after a toke or a toot of her favorite medication) returned to Twitter to say this to Trump: "It's hard to say, but I even accept you as president of the United States." The risque 23-year-old showed more maturity than the many Democrats suffering from Trumpophobia, struggling to get through the five stages of grief. They are stuck on denial, can't move on to bargaining. Hard to believe I am praising Cyrus, but here I am.
Now we have the protests with the signature sign, "Not My President." Makes a great hashtag but does nothing to advance their cause. I heard similar sophomoric sentiments directed at Barack Obama and George W. Bush.
Previous denunciations of presidents contained oft-promised, but never realized, statements by Hollywood entertainers of deserting the country. They only demonstrate their mental vacancy and political impotence.
The anti-Trump protests should have been predictable, but everyone was busy forecasting violent protests by Trump supporters, not the other side.
I imagine there would have been some. Maybe a sack and ashes fashion show at Mar-a-Lago. Burning a Hillary effigy in front of the Trump Taj Mahal casino. Crashing the Trump 757 into the White House. We'll never know.
Over the past few days, in addition to the loathing, which he has earned, I hear genuine, actual, heart-rending fear from various people - women, Hispanics, Muslims, immigrants, the undocumented, students, LGBTQ people, African Americans, gypsies, tramps and thieves. Oops. The last three were furnished by Cher. Sorry.
I don't want to hurt their feelings by making light of their fears but they need smelling salts.
Some of the fear comes from actually believing campaign hyperbole that Trump is Hitler. They said that about Bush. His enemies called Obama a new Karl Marx.
One Facebook friend predicted Trump would turn toll booths into checkpoints where Jews would be rounded up. Yes, he really said that.
Some of the fear is caused by Trump's actual words. Yes, illegal immigrants have a cause to fear, although I think he soon will see the impossibility of rounding up 11 million. I predict he won't build a wall and get Mexico to pay for it.
He is already backing away from his pledge to "repeal and replace" Obamacare. Now that he is in the real reality show of the presidency, where he doesn't get to say "you're fired" to opponents, his tune will change. That's why it is important to move on from denial and get to bargaining. It's also important to stop calling your fellow Americans "deplorables" for their choice, which was a primal scream for change.
Isolated incidents of hate crimes - mostly by but some against Trump supporters - should be treated as crimes. I hope Trump will condemn them.
I don't want to get into the swamp of defending anything Trump has said-and I voted for Hillary to protest some of what he said - but there is a difference between what he said, what he meant and how it has been reported through the filter of a media that was mostly against him. The New York Times came close to admitting as much.
Listen: Trump alone cannot change gay marriage and abortion, even if he wanted to. He hates the media, but he can't change the 1st Amendment. He doesn't like birthright citizenship, but he can't change the 14th Amendment. He has the benefit of a Republican Senate and House but a lot of Republicans don't like him. He brags of his skill as a negotiator, and he'll need that with them - and us.
What I'm saying to those convulsed with fear is this: Have faith in your democracy, even when it elects a candidate you hate. It has happened to the other side. Have faith in America, which remains a shining city on a hill.
Even with President Trump.
Prepare to oppose him when he is wrong, but as FDR said, "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself."
If I can praise Miley Cyrus, you can do this.