Nikki Haley Is a Poster Girl for the Trump Divide
Nikki Haley Is a Poster Girl for the Trump Divide
Nikki Haley continues to be very disappointing. Aside from her completely political display of prompting removal of the Confederate flag from state house property last year in Columbia, South Carolina, following the Charleston church shootings, now she is jumping on the PC train calling Donald Trump’s rhetoric dangerous. She even managed to work in a connection of Trump’s words to the shooting itself. That’s wrong.
While Haley said she doesn’t think Trump’s supporters are racists, she told The Associated Press that the rhetoric he uses is dangerous. She invoked the Charleston shooting, in which Dylann Storm Roof is accused of killing nine black parishioners at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church there. “I know what that rhetoric can do. I saw it happen,” Haley said.
I am no fan of Donald Trump and I do condemn his statements like “taking people out in stretchers,” but lately he hasn’t said anything that is questionable towards inciting violence. Of course he continues to call people sleazes and real beauties in his trademark sarcastic form, but other than that he’s been pretty tame by stopping his incendiary talk about paying for people’s legal bills if they are arrested for punching someone at one of his rallies.
All of this leaves people like me in quite a dilemma. Donald Trump doesn’t present an honorable persona. He himself has cornered the sleaze factor so right off the bat, he’s dug himself a hole as far as I’m concerned. But despite his coarse ways and general dislikable demeanor, I could overlook these things if he would only inspire some trust. The bottom line is that situations that we cannot imagine at present, will certainly present themselves to the next president of the United States. I want to be able to predict how my president will act in unknowable situations, and the only way to be able to do that is to see those guiding principles demonstrated at present.
The problem with Trump is that he is pliable. Some people would say that is a plus, and it could be if I could trust that he would always lean toward safeguarding the interests of America. The most I feel comfortable saying about this is that whenever America’s interest and Trump’s interest coincide, I am reasonably certain of the direction he will go. But if those interests diverge, and I see lots of opportunity for that to happen, I can also say with a lot surety that Trump will follow his own interests before America’s. I believe that Trump’s motivation for seeking the presidency is his own legacy, and what it will do for him in the annals of his bank accounts. If America is bettered in the process, then great, but that’s not his primary motivation. How did I come to this conclusion? It’s not rocket science, read on.
If you’ve lived over forty years you should be well experienced with the belief that the past predicts the future. I’ve found that to be true about 100% of the time. Rarely do people not act in accordance with their prior behavior. If they do change their ways it is only through a serious of steps forward and then back, and then finally they may reach a place where they have changed their character for good. It’s this principle by which I have judged Trump. I am not encouraged by his past, and I see hardly any indication that he will change his reactions to situations based on the fact that he would president of the United States, the most powerful person in the world.
On the other hand, I cannot join people like Nikki Haley who are trying to straddle the divide between conducting themselves honorably and ending up pandering to the PC crowd. I’ve grown weary of hearing prominent Republicans, who call themselves conservatives, falling in line with Trump without demanding that he hold the line on basic conservative values, but I’m absolutely disgusted at seeing idiot thugs engaging in violence at Trump rallies. This has been a very unsettling place to be in this election cycle, and I’m quite certain that many others feel the same way. We long to be able to support someone that we could feel mostly good about, but to say our choices are bleak is the understatement of the year. And when each party’s forerunner’s best argument is that the other guy is worse than they are, it has got to be some kind of epochal event in history. And we are living it.
So what’s a good conservative to do? I’ve got no answers. I’ve just made a case for past predicting the future, and yet I’ve never been so disappointed by people I thought I knew. But I do feel there are some silver linings in what we are enduring. Because so many people I had admired have fallen so far, this has been an opportunity to examine deeply held beliefs. It has also exposed a lot of hypocrites, always a good thing. More changes and rearrangements and realignments are still likely to come, but where there is chaos there is also opportunity. Rahm Emanuel and I can agree about that.