Carnes: The replies to my plea to defend Trump are beginning to make sense (column)
January 29, 2018
OK, I think I get it.
I'm pretty sure I now understand why Trump supporters remain seated when asked to publicly stand up for the man's character: The blissful beauty of embraceable ignorance.
Like liberals' lazy indifference to Obama's faults, many conservatives choose to ignore what they do not wish to see or hear from the man, as long as he infuriates the other side of the political coin.
To paraphrase an email I received last week: Party over patriotism.
I had asked readers (begged is more like it) to please share with Vail Daily readers their support for Trump's character, with the caveat excluding policy and debatable accomplishments as an excuse.
Oh, and leave out past presidents and their spouses, too.
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The total number of responses achieving this distinction is the exact number of Super Bowls won by the Philadelphia Eagles — zero (I can hear the "boos" already).
Granted, I'm a Cowboy and Broncos fan, but come this Sunday … wait, where was I?
While I received more than a dozen personal emails, only three readers had the courage to publicly share their thoughts with the Vail Daily, and I applaud them all, though none took a stab at actually answering my question.
The personal emails ran the gamut from attacking me for daring to "be judgmental" to being "afraid to discuss his accomplishments" to being "an atheist," as if believing in magical beings is a prerequisite for supporting Trump.
Let me say this for the umpteenth time: I am neither conservative nor liberal, have never voted Republican or Democrat and distrust both sides equally.
Although a member of Vail's PLCDT (Precision LawnChair Demonstration Team) proudly performing at Bill Clinton's inaugural parade in 1993, I publicly ridiculed the man's actions whenever the Vail Daily published my letters.
We again proudly performed at G.W. Bush's inaugural parade in 2001, and when I ridiculed Bush on this very page, liberals eagerly approved and conservatives sent me all sorts of nasty emails.
For whatever nefarious reason the state of Colorado chose not to send the PLCDT to D.C. in 2009, I still watched the inauguration on TV, and when I ridiculed Obama on this very page, conservatives eagerly approved and liberals sent me all sorts of nasty emails.
Now we're on a different page, but it's the same book.
Calling me a journalist is an insult to all journalists, but in my opinion, a major reason for their existence is to raise constructive hell when it comes to covering elected officials. History proves this desperate need day after day, year after year.
Would some of you prefer the press slobber all over Trump's self-proclaimed accomplishments without question? Do you yearn for a press afraid to ask questions for fear of retribution?
When dear leader reads the State of the Union speech tonight, would you honestly be content if every false statement he makes — though easily proven false by any dolt with a keyboard — be completely ignored because you're happy with the temporary increase in your 401k?
So, yeah, I get it, but understand my patriotism steadfastly remains for this country, not the temporary occupant in the White House.
Richard Carnes, of Edwards, writes weekly. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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