Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, July 20, 2019

MVNews this week:  Page 12


Mountain Views-News Saturday, June 6, 2019 


White racism was at the root of Donald Trump’s 2016 candidacy, and so 
it will be again in 2020. Either we decisively reject it at the ballot box, and 
thus begin to salvage our pluralistic values, or we can acquiesce in the slow 
death of the American dream.

The only thing that’s shocking about his racist tweets - demanding that 
four congresswomen of color, four U.S. citizens, “go back” to the countries 
they came from - is that anyone in America still has the capacity to 
be shocked. This racist has been operating in plain sight ever since he 
relentlessly lied, year after year, that the first black president wasn’t really an American. Ever 
since the early 1970s, when he was nailed by Richard Nixon’s Justice Department for refusing 
to rent apartments to black people. Heck, he’s still refusing to apologize for demanding that 
five black kids (the so-called “Central Park Five”) be executed for raping a white jogger, even 
though they were exonerated nearly two decades ago.

Trump has drawn a firm line in the sand: Are we racists or are we not? Fundamentally, the 
2020 campaign may be our last chance to decide what kind of people we want to be. We already 
know what Trump’s base wants. We already know what the elected Republicans want, 
as their predictably contemptible silence made clear. 

But that leaves the rest of us. Trump, by impulse or design, is daring us to prove that we are 
better than our most despicable instincts.

His attitude isn’t new, of course. Granted, the rant directed at the four congresswomen (“you 
can’t leave fast enough”) was perhaps his most virulent; Douglas A. Blackmon, a Pulitzer 
Prize-winning expert on race says that Trump “is now invoking the white supremacist mentality 
of the early 1900s, when anyone who looked ‘not white’ could be labeled as unwelcome 
in America.” But consider this critique of Trump, written on a previous occasion:

“His ascent was fueled at its core by racism that was at worst endorsed, or at minimum tolerated 
by a plurality of Republican primary voters. They greased his path to power. They share 
the responsibility for his trashing of our highest values, for the toxic poison he has injected 
into the body politic.”

I wrote that - 18 months ago - when Trump trashed immigrants of color by saying, “Why 
are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” If you’re not too numb, 
you may remember that. Trump hasn’t changed a whit since, except for the worse. Character 
is destiny, his was forged long ago, and not even the decisive loss of the House in the 2018 
midterms has shaken his resolve that bigotry should be big on the ballot in 2020. Are we sufficiently 
stoked to prove him wrong? Will Democrats be sufficiently enlightened to set aside 
their usual ideological squabbles and unite to reject racism?

The fundamental challenge we face next year is to live up to this American ideal:

“We lead the world because, unique among nations, we draw our people - our strength - from 
every country and every corner of the world. And by doing so we continuously renew and 
enrich our nation … Thanks to each wave of new arrivals to this land of opportunity, we’re a 
nation forever young, forever bursting with energy and new ideas, and always on the cutting 
edge, always leading the world to the next frontier… It is bold men and women, yearning 
for freedom and opportunity, who leave their homelands and come to a new country to start 
their lives over. They believe in the American dream. And over and over they make it come 
true for themselves, for their children, and for others.”

President Ronald Reagan doesn’t resonate anymore within the Trumpist GOP, and any contemporary 
Republican who’d dare talk that way would probably be trounced in a primary. 
But for the rest of us, may his words be a lantern in the darkness on the pitted road to 2020.

Dick Polman is the national political columnist at WHYY in Philadelphia and a “Writer in 
Residence” at the University of Pennsylvania. Email him at




Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 



Patricia Colonello




John Aveny 



Mary Lou Caldwell

Kevin McGuire

Chris Leclerc

Bob Eklund

Howard Hays

Paul Carpenter

Kim Clymer-Kelley

Christopher Nyerges

Peter Dills 

Rich Johnson

Lori Ann Harris

Rev. James Snyder

Dr. Tina Paul

Katie Hopkins

Deanne Davis

Despina Arouzman

Jeff Brown

Marc Garlett

Keely Toten

Dan Golden

Rebecca Wright

Hail Hamilton

Joan Schmidt

LaQuetta Shamblee



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The next time a Republican tries to tell you that he or she is an heir to the legacy of Abraham Lincoln, 
remind them that in 2019, when the GOP had a chance to stand up to the worst kind of 
bigotry and un-American behavior, the self-styled “Party of Lincoln” was conspicuously 
and shamefully silent.

In the wake of President Donald Trump’s despicable and racist tweets telling four minority 
women members of Congress - all American citizens, all duly elected representatives of 
hundreds of thousands of American citizens of all races, colors, and creeds - to “go back” to 
where they came from, Capitol Hill Republicans surrendered whatever tattered remnants 
of their spines remained and were complicit in the face of the worst kind of anti-American 

All four of the women targeted by Trump - Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, 
Ilhan Omar and Ayanna Pressley - pushed back during a Capitol Hill news conference on 
Monday night, according to the Washington Post.

“I encourage the American people and all of us - in this room and beyond - to not take the 
bait,” Pressley said. “This is a disruptive distraction from the issues of care, concern and 
consequence to the American people that we were sent here with a decisive mandate from 
our constituents to work on.”

But some Republicans not only took the bait - they swallowed it: hook, line, and sinker.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told the Washington Post that Trump “is not a 
racist,” and instead was speaking out of “frustration.” Asked if he believed that Omar, who 
is a naturalized American citizen, should return to Somalia, where she was born, McCarthy 
said, “No, they’re Americans. Nobody believes somebody should leave the country. They 
have a right to give their opinion.”

Actually, Mr. Minority Leader, that is precisely what the president believes: “ IF YOU ARE 
NOT HAPPY HERE, YOU CAN LEAVE! It is your choice, and your choice alone. This is 
about love for America. Certain people HATE our Country,” Trump tweeted again Monday 
in a hateful tirade.

Like McCarthy, Rep. Mark Meadows, chair of the hyper-conservative Freedom Caucus 
(irony intentional?), nearly tore a rotator cuff trying to explain away Trump’s remarks.

Trump’s comments “were not based on any religious preference, on any skin color,” but 
rather on frustration over “having a crisis at the border and having a whole lot of people 
weigh in and yet not really putting action to those words,” he said.

Meadows is half right at least. Trump was clearly trying to change the subject away from 
the massive ICE raids that never materialized over the weekend, and away from disturbing 
footage of the inhumane conditions in detention camps at the southern border. But he’s 
dead wrong otherwise.

Taking to Twitter, Pennsylvania Rep. Scott Perry wrote that he was disappointed to find 
“that many in the media are just awakening to the anti-American and anti-Semitic comments 
uttered consistently by some socialist leaders. I invite everyone to join me as we 
continue strengthening our Country and communities.”

Perry is a veteran, sworn to uphold the Constitution and the values it represents. Those values 
include every American’s constitutionally protected right to criticize the government, 
as well as Congress’ constitutionally authorized duty and responsibility to act as a check on 
the executive branch.

Maybe he forgot that. Maybe someone should remind him.

Other Republicans, such as Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey, tried to split the difference, 
criticizing Trump even as they took a swipe at the four Democratic lawmakers. Toomey 
said in a statement that Trump was “wrong to suggest that four left-wing congresswomen 
should go back to where they came from.”

But Toomey also said that he “couldn’t disagree more with these congresswomen’s views 
on immigration, socialism, national security, and virtually every policy issue. But they are 
entitled to their opinions, however misguided they may be. We should defeat their ideas on 
the merits, not on the basis of their ancestry.”

How hard is it to say, without qualification, that something is wrong? How hard is it to say 
that the president’s comments are racist, misogynist, and not consonant with the values we 
hold dear as a country? It shouldn’t be difficult at all.

And yet, hardly any Republican member of Congress could accomplish that simple task.

One of America’s greatest Republican presidents, Theodore Roosevelt, famously argued 
that it’s “not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public” 
to say that the president cannot be criticized.

In the case of not only The Squad, but again and again throughout Trump’s bankrupt presidency, 
Republicans have failed this basic test. It’s now on the voters to remind Trump - and 
his toadies in Congress - of this failure at the ballot box in 2020.



Thank God for the British Open.

For four days I can watch the best 
professional golfers in the world 
playing on TV instead of watching the 
Democrats playing their political games 
in Washington.

 It was a crazy week of controversial 
presidential tweets, rabid accusations 
of racism by the liberal media and 
parliamentary turmoil in the House of 
Representatives, but Democrats worked 
extra hard each day to prove that they 
are still deranged.

 For instance, a hundred House 
Democrats defied the wishes of House 
Speaker Nancy Pelosi and made fools 
of themselves by trying - and failing 
- to pass a resolution to impeach 
President Trump over allegedly racist 
comments he made about Democratic 
congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-
Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley 
and Ilhan Omar.

 Meanwhile, liberal, moderate and 
socialist Democrats in Washington were 
shooting at each other in a circular firing 
squad that made their party look even 
more inept, confused and lost. 

 Pelosi, a lifelong lefty, continued to 
be upstaged, disrespected and made to 
seem like a moderate Democrat by AOC 
and her wrecking crew.

 The four rookie representatives -- 
who in six months have made it clear 
they prefer socialism over capitalism, 
Palestine over Israel and open borders 
over immigration reform -- like to call 
themselves “progressive women of 

 But Pelosi has a less exalted opinion of 
them, especially after their leader, AOC, 
appeared to play the race card when she 
hinted the speaker was singling them out 
for criticism because they were women 
of color.

 Nancy Pelosi a racist too? Who’s next? 
Oh, I forgot. Everyone’s a racist now. 

 House Mother Pelosi retaliated for 
the socialist foursome’s trouble-making 
by dubbing them “The Squad” and 
reminding them that despite the six 
months of slobbering attention they’ve 
gotten from the liberal media, they were 
“only four people.”

 President Trump, who has cleverly made 
AOC and her gang into the politically 
unattractive face of the Democrat Party 
for 2020, stirred the pot by calling them 
out as “hate-filled extremists who are 
constantly trying to tear our country 

 Of course, everyone on CNN and 
MSNBC was certain Trump picked 
on the Squad because of their color, or 
because they were women, but as usual 
they were totally wrong.

 Trump doesn’t care what color or sex 
the Squad members are.

He picked on 
them because 
they keep saying 
the same stupid 
socialist stuff, 
keep stirring 
up trouble in 
the media by 
conditions at 
the southern border and keep charging 
anyone who disagrees with them as 
being a racist or a bigot.

 The president made a rare political 
mistake earlier this week by uniting 
the bickering Democrats with a tweet 
storm that implied that House members 
leveling nonstop criticism at America 
should first “go back” to “help fix the 
totally broken and crime infested places 
from which they came.” 

 Trump didn’t name the Squad 
members, but everyone knew whom 
he was referring to. He was predictably 
called a racist by Democrats and just 
about everyone with a laptop in the 
liberal media. But he was right to bash 
the Squad for their radical views. They 
are not just dumb, they’re dangerous.

 Their presence in Congress reminds 
me of that famous but unverified quote 
that Nikita Khrushchev reportedly said 
in 1956 about how the USSR would 
eventually defeat America: “We do not 
have to invade the United States, we will 
destroy you from within.” So let me get 
this straight.

 While I have to watch Democrats in 
Congress waste time hating and sanctioning 
the president and trashing 
America as a racist country after it twice 
elected a black president, I still have an 
invasion of illegal immigrants on my 
southern border.

 And while I watch Democrats -- and 
Republicans -- in Washington spend another 
year kicking the healthcare-reform 
can down the road, I have a daughter-
in-law and son in Los Angeles who suddenly 
had their private health insurance 
cancelled and must now sign up with the 
state’s system because there’s no competition 
in California.

 Both Republican and Democrats are at 
fault for our healthcare and immigration 

 Both parties have recently held total 
control of Congress and the White 
House at the same time, yet neither one 
honestly tried solve the country’s two 
most important problems.

 If they can’t get find the political courage 
to fix healthcare or immigration by 
next fall, we shouldn’t give one member 
of Congress from either party a single 

 At this point, the only person I think 
who deserves to be reelected in 2020 is 
the Republican who’s repeatedly proved 
he has the will and the cajones to stand 
up to the Democrats and the liberal media 
-- Donald Trump.

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