Why Donald Trump Scares Me

I have a secret. I usually like election season. I don’t live in a swing state, so I admit that I don’t have as much opportunity to develop political advertising fatigue. But still. It’s, in its own way, exciting. Democracy in action, etc.

And there is always that candidate. That candidate that’s so goofy and clearly wrong for the job that he or she taps into some unknown and unlikely vein of popularity. A protest vote, if you will, before votes are actually cast in primaries and caucuses around the country. People almost always come to their senses in the end and choose a sensible candidate with novel attributes, like experience and a plan.

All of this is to say that, despite myself, I like the circus. But I like the circus only insofar as I know clearer heads will prevail. And that’s why I don’t really like the circus right now.

Donald Trump scares me. Actually, that’s not quite right. For Donald Trump to scare me, I’d have to believe that he believes all the racist stuff he’s been spouting off lately, and I don’t believe that for a second. (Either he doesn’t believe it, or is wishy-washy.) I think he’s an entertainer first who will do anything to bump up his poll numbers and get interviews on the news networks. So, actually, what scares me about Donald Trump is his supporters.

Listen, I live on the Internet. I know that there is a certain percentage of the human race that are terrible. The Donald, however, has had a consistent lead in national polls for months. For a while this made some sense. He was the goofy candidate, the protest vote against the political establishment for before things had to get real. What is baffling is that he’s kept this lead after a multitude of racist incidents. The most recent is this ludicrous Muslim ban, but it goes back further. He’s claimed Latinos coming from Mexico are rapists and drug dealers. His poll numbers didn’t dip.

In all honesty, I can’t say I’m too surprised by that. At the time hating on the Latino population was pretty much par for the course in the immigration debate. Then came the overt misogyny. Again, nothing. And, again, not a huge surprise. That Republicans have heaps of respect for women has not been my experience.

That Trump’s numbers haven’t wavered much I chocked up to a crowded GOP field. Once people start dropping out, I told myself, other, more sensible candidates will start to pull away.

Then he came out with what news networks have charitably called his “plan” to keep all Muslims out of the United States and I thought, this is it. He’s done. No one will support this. When yet again his support barely budged, I started to get scared.

In retrospect, maybe none of us should have been surprised. According to a new survey, Trump’s supporters are the most hostile to anyone they perceive as an outside ethnic group, and rounding up an ethnic group and registering them really just takes this type of thinking to its logical conclusion. Previously, I suppose, there was always some plausible deniability. No politician would ever come out and say these types of racist things. We’re sophisticated watchers of politics. We know racist dirtbags are out there. I, however, had managed to convince myself that maybe there weren’t as many out there as there are. Or maybe one can be racist without going full Japanese internment camp. For way too many people, I was wrong.

It’s even little comfort to realize that Trump will almost certainly not get the nomination. There’s a lot wrong with national polls when the selection process happens state-by-state. And Ted Cruz – an equally horrifying choice – is making waves in Iowa. What is so scary about Trump and his supporters is how reluctant other candidates are to push back. Only Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, John Kasich, and Lindsey Graham came out against Trump’s ridiculous proposal with any speed. This should have been a no-brainer and apparently it was not.

In a way I see where the more conservative GOP candidates are coming from. They want Trump’s 30-ish percent of the electorate. And that 30-ish percent are not only willing to tolerate one of the most anti-democratic and anti-American policy proposals in recent memory, but that proposal only makes their support stronger.

That’s not just scary. It’s terrifying.

Photo Credit: Ninian Reid

400 comments

Roberto MARINI
Roberto MARINIabout a year ago

trump is not a good president

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Carl O.
Carl O2 years ago

Donald Trump denies that he is flip flopping on immigration. His perspective and point of view have not changed. His head is still stuck in his ass.

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john prini
john prini2 years ago

too many REP' candidates to start with, too MUCH choice, & the GOOD men are washed away with the bath water, Except Gump, who clinged on to the sink hole with the scum. /:0 & i do have a big penis!

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cara u.
cara u2 years ago

i always had the impression that he was running for president because, despite his vast fortune, the poor billionaire was bored. awww. don't let this publicity stunt become your next president, america. please. it will mean terrible things for the world.

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Tricia Hamilton
Tricia Hamilton3 years ago

I think if he makes abortion illegal, everyone should drop their unwanted children on his doorstep. He has mega bucks. What the hell. He is a Freak. There will be a war, there will be major problems with him. WE WILL ALL DIE WITH THIS MAN!!

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Carl O.
Carl O3 years ago

Donald Trump or as I like to call him T Rump scares me as much as Ted Cruz. He is a narcissistic facist demagogue who like Hitler in the 1930's is gaining power but spreading hate and bigotry for a certain group. In Hitler's case it was Jews, Communists, Homosexuals ans Gypsies. In Trump's case it is Blacks, undocumented Hispanics and Muslims. The groups are different but the game is the same to divide and conquer. If this country elects Trump it will start heading down a very dangerous path. My maternal grandfather's brother died in the Battle of the Bulge and many young men left their homes their jobs and their families to travel overseas to fight facism. In 1984 I backpacked around Europe and visited the Dachau concentration camp outside Munich trying to understand how the German people could have followed someone like Hitler down such a dark and violent path. I never would have believed that we would see the rise of facism in America. Trump remarks about punching people in the face or working them over if they protest your ideology. Sounding like Bull Connor during the Civil Rights era wherein beatings, fire houses and police dogs were used to put down and intimidate protesters. What T Rump seems to forget is that in New York harbor is the Statue of Liberty who welcomes refugees and immigrants to our shores and that the Constitution grants us the rights to free speech and peaceful protest. A vote for T Rump is a vote to undue and upend what made America great

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Richelle R.
Richelle R3 years ago

David, I think you're talking about the Bush administration.

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Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus3 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

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David F.
David F3 years ago

Sarah, I'm not a Trump supporter, but what you say is undeniable, he is a capitalist first, he didn't become a billionaire without knowing how to separate the good experts from the bad.
Capitalism makes the rich richer and the poor richer, It might even divide the income disparity more, so what, the poor wind up with a bigger pie. The economic the antipathy of the entire Democrat party.

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Sarah Hill
Sarah Hill3 years ago

I think he could do the job. He took the small company his father left him and made it "great". If he can run a huge corporation, he could run a country. He obviously listens to his advisers which is something Obama has not done.

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