In the interest of full disclosure it is important for you to know that I do not like Donald Trump, have never liked Donald Trump and may never like Donald Trump and I’m alright with that. If I was to meet the soon to be President I would treat him with all of the respect that the office demands and he is certainly welcome in my house, as is soon to be ex-President Obama and any other living former president. Having said that, I am a little upset with him.
I never intended to become an apologist for him but that’s exactly what has happened. I went to bat for both candidates during the election whenever I thought they were being slandered but the honest truth is that I spent way more time trying to correct the record concerning Trump than I did for Clinton. I voted third party BECAUSE I didn’t want to side with one of the major parties but somehow I got sucked into sticking up for this loud-mouthed, rude New Yorker most of the time. Did I mention that I am upset with him because of this?
In a sense, I was looking forward to the inevitable Clinton win because then I would be free from my apologetic bondage. Trump would fade out of politics and I could go back to complaining about politicians in general. (Chuckle) The obvious problem is that with his improbable victory he has screwed up my plans for a jail break and I remain firmly attached to him, as if by an invisible chain, and I am more than a bit resentful about that. Of course I blame him, who else would I blame?
So, here I am stuck doing the very thing that I don’t want to do but I am going to do it because I think that truth is important. Do I know all of the truth about Donald Trump? Absolutely not, but I think that I’ve done enough research to be able to give a more honest appraisal of the man than those who are either Fan-Boys or Never-Trumpers. This is what I think I know…
Trump has been accused of being an anti-Semite, a misogynist, and a racist. He has also been accused of being a homophobe and a xenophobe. Let’s take a look at them in order.
Does Donald Trump hate Jews? Prior to the appointment of Reince Priebus as White House Chief of Staff, a man by the name of Jared Kushner was considered to be one of the top possible choices. Trump is reported to consider his counsel to be highly valuable and his loyalty unquestionable. Why? Because Kushner is married to Trump’s prized daughter Ivanka. Kushner is Jewish. Prior to their marriage, Ivanka also converted to Judaism. Not only are they Jews, they are Orthodox Jews and all three of their children (Trump’s grandchildren) are being raised as Orthodox Jews. Donald Trump’s sun rises and sets on his daughter Ivanka so it doesn’t make much sense that he would support her conversion, her marriage, and the religious education of his grandchildren as Jews if he hated Jews. Trump’s son, Eric, married Lara Yunaska who is also Jewish. They had a Jewish ceremony and Kushner officiated. Trump’s other older son Don Jr. married Vanessa Kay Haydon who is the granddaughter of European Jewish immigrants. I couldn’t find any reliable information on whether or not she practiced Judaism though. Beyond his family, he was the Grand Marshal of the annual “Salute to Israel” parade. The Jewish National Fund awarded him the “Tree of Life” award for his lifetime of support for the Jewish people and the state of Israel. Jewish Week found that Trump has given generously for many years to Jewish charities. I could go on but I think the point has been made. If Donald Trump is anti-Semitic then he has a very odd way of showing it.
Trump has a long history of being rude and crude towards women but does he hate them because they are women? What I found in researching this is that Trump has a long history of being crude with BOTH men and women and if you follow some of these links you will see exactly what I am talking about. There is no question that he can be a boor. The question is whether he has a prejudice against women in general. He has spent 30 years of his life trying to stay in the New York tabloids and he has said some ridiculous things to get himself there. Who goes on the Howard Stern show unless they are intentionally seeking controversy? Regardless, Trump has an impressive record of appointing women to some of the top positions in his business and Yahoo News did a pretty good job of covering this along with his appearance on the cover of Savvy Woman magazine. According to attorney Michael Cohen, even though Trump’s business is 57% made up of male employees, female executives outnumber male executives. He hired Kellyanne Conway to be his campaign manager and she was the first female to run a winning presidential campaign. Barbara Res worked for Trump for 11 years and was the first woman to be put in charge of building a skyscraper. She was interviewed by Rolling Stone and gave a pretty harsh accounting of Trump including his infidelities but she was also fair in pointing out that he was rude to everyone regardless of gender. If you are interested in reading a list compiled by supporters, of pro-women things Trump is accredited with doing, you can read them here. The point I want to make is that if he hated women just because they were women then we wouldn’t be seeing any of these things because true misogynists don’t do that. They keep women out of power and under foot. Is he rude and crude? Absolutely, but does he hate women just because they are women? I don’t believe so.
In 1973 the Trump Management Corporation and others were sued by the Justice Department for violating the Fair Housing Act of 1968. They settled and never admitted guilt. According to the NY Times it was charged that the company had required different rental terms and conditions based on race and that it had misrepresented to blacks that apartments were not available. If true, that was obviously discrimination but there is absolutely no proof that Trump personally had anything to do with that other than his name was on the company. I found other examples citing racism but they were all “he said, she said.” He was also accused of racism because he called for the return of the death penalty in NY after black and Latino teens were arrested in the infamous “Central Park jogger” attack. Does that mean that he wouldn’t have done that if they were white? Who knows. I also found accounts of him saying politically incorrect and racially insensitive things. I have absolutely no problem believing that all of that is true without being able to prove it because it fits what I know of this guy. He’s got a big mouth and he’s rude. That doesn’t make him racist, he’s rude and insensitive to everybody. In 1986 he received The Ellis Island Medal of Honor award in celebration of “patriotism, tolerance, brotherhood and diversity” He was photographed with fellow recipients Muhammad Ali, and Rosa Parks. There are many websites that claim that he did not receive this award but they are deceiving because they say that he didn’t receive the award from the NAACP which he didn’t. He received it from the Ellis Island Foundation and is listed by the New York Times. I have known only a couple of people in my lifetime that were real racists. They truly hated people who were not the same race as them. Is Trump one of them? To me, the story that speaks the loudest is that of Lynn Patton, the black female executive who struggled with addiction and was embraced by the Trump family. Real racists don’t do that. The video of her story is here. There are a number of other stories where Trump financially helped people belonging to minority groups and those can be found on the same pro-Trump Reddit page as the previously cited stories about women. You can judge for yourself. I don’t believe Trump is a racist but I also don’t believe that he is guiltless from saying rude and insensitive things about minorities which could easily be construed as racism. Racist? No. Equal opportunity offender? Yes.
This one was really hard because I couldn’t determine what was driving this accusation beyond Trump’s usual big mouth and insensitivity. The most credible thing is that he doesn’t support nationwide marriage equality. He has stated repeatedly that he thinks that gay marriage should be determined by each individual state. If that is homophobia to you then I guess in your mind he’s homophobic. All that it means to me is that he understands and respects the 10th Amendment. CBS put together a video of what was said about gay rights at the RNC convention and it includes a clip of Trump where he vows to protect LGBT citizens from “hateful foreign ideology.” You can watch it and decide for yourself whether you think that he is serious or not.
Xenophobia is an intense or irrational dislike or fear of people from other countries. I believe that he is accused of this mostly because of his stance on illegal immigration. I found nothing to promote the idea that Trump doesn’t like foreigners just because they are foreigners. He’s already married two immigrants and his current wife, Melania, will become only the second foreign born First Lady in the history of the United States. He has business dealings with people from all over the world regardless of country of origin. I think that most of the criticism aimed at him is from his statements about Mexicans. While sometimes insensitive and rude, are these statements enough to make you believe that he hates people from other countries? You will have to answer that for yourself. The argument that I have in my head goes like this…
Trump is against illegal immigration. There are about 11 million people living here in the USA illegally. 6.5 million of them are Mexican. If they were Polish or Scottish would that make a difference to him? If you think that Trump wouldn’t care if there were 6.5 million Polish people living here illegally then in your mind you can certainly convict him of racism. Guilty. Xenophobia though? To be xenophobic he would have to be against all immigration because he doesn’t like ANY foreigners for no reason other than they are foreign. I don’t believe he is, but you will have to make up your own mind. It just doesn’t make sense to me that somebody who hates foreigners would marry a first generation immigrant and have a son with her.
I don’t think Donald Trump is a high quality human being. High quality human beings don’t say the kinds of outrageous and demeaning things that he has said over his lifetime. They also don’t get into Twitter wars and degrade people that they don’t agree with. Does that make him an anti-Semite, misogynist, racist, homophobe or xenophobe? Absolutely not. What it does make him is a somewhat pitiful example of humanity who, at 70 years of age, is running out of time to grow up. Please grow up Mr. Trump. I have a difficult time imagining you sitting behind the President’s desk in the oval office waging Twitter battles against Rosie O’Donnell. I’m also sick of being your apologist. You’re welcome, I guess.
A friend of mine dubbed me “The voice of reason in a very unreasonable world” which I am flattered by because I am less than that. Having said that, if you enjoyed my writing I invite you to scroll to the very bottom of this page where there is a button labeled “Follow”. If you press that button you will receive a notification whenever this blog is updated with new posts. Thank you for reading.