By: Richard Ray
What you are about to read is about hypocrisy not politics or ideology. A cynic could successfully argue that all of politics are layered in hypocrisy in America’s political system, irrespective of party. I could not dispute that assertion. However, this present Trump administration has taken lies and hypocrisy to all time lows… and I think it is unfortunately safe to say, we are not close to hitting the floor/ceiling.
You are not allowed to be a bully via the media or social media and then cry victim when those same tactics are used against you. Donald Trump his family and supporters were in a uproar over comedian Kathy Griffin’s photo depicting herself holding the bloodied, decapitated, head of Donald Trump. I will not argue about her First Amendment rights or the benefit of the doubt that we should allow comedians in general to be abhorrently politically incorrect. At best her stunt was just poor taste and disrespectful of the office that should be held in high esteem regardless of who holds the position and any personal feeling that one may have toward a sitting US President.
The problem with the indignation Trump, his family and supporters showed toward Kathy Griffin’s actions is that these same people were decidedly tone deaf when similar statements or memes were directed toward Barack Obama. Case in point Ted Nugent. In a 2007 onstage rant, directed against Obama, the singer said, “He’s a piece of s***. I told him to suck on my machine gun.” First Amendment or not his disrespect toward the office and the man are well documented, yet there he was a guest of Donald Trump in the White House shortly after he entered office. Nugent also had the gall to actually express his outrage publicly toward Kathy Griffin’s actions claiming she should be in jail for the threat. His justification that telling a then presidential candidate to suck on his machine gun was of course not a threat from him but a metaphor.
Now before I go further in on Trump and his supporters, let me address Kathy Griffin’s press conference after her apology in which she claimed to be bullied by Trump and his family and “that he broke her”. The problem is Kathy Griffin does not get to play victim either. Her whole style of comedy could be defined as bullying. At the very least she is personal and persistent in her attacks on other celebrities as part of her routines and as a known user of these type of tactics, she has lost all standing to ever have the right to cry victim toward someone bullying her or hurting her feelings when that is essentially her Modus Operandi.
Trump campaigned on negativity. He used the press to bolster his claims and narrative that as a non-politician he was somehow different than the establishment. If he or his campaign did not actually create “fake news”, they either promoted it or refused to denounce it to further their agenda.
However, now Donald Trump, his administration and supporters cry fake news whenever there is a negative story related to Trump. He and his supporters have lost the right to feign indignation at their treatment in the press when they were enduring provocateurs throughout the campaign of promoting negativity. The negativity and bullying have not stopped since Trump has entered office. His recent Tweeting feud with the (Muslim) Mayor of London following the recent terror attacks, show that Trump still engages in aggressive and misleading tactics with those that have fallen on his bad side.
However, you can not be Twitter Finger Bully and then express indignation when others use those same tactics against you. His son Eric just recently commented that, “Democrats are not even people”, because of the unfair disrespect shown toward his father, further chastising them for their obstructionist ways that are hurting America. I will not argue that people are not presently disrespectful to his father personally and the office. I will also not argue that Democrats are attempting to show resistance to all of his policies simply along party lines, even if they lack numbers to prevent all of them all together.
Yet again, Donald, Eric and all other Republicans are essentially all the Pot calling the Kettle Black. For six years Republicans at every opportunity tried to impede President Obama and his policies. The final act of actual obstruction by the Republicans was the refusal for 10 months to even allow a vote for the President’s pick of a US Supreme Court Justice nomination after Scalia’s death on February 13, 2016.
There was a common law provision called “The Doctrine of Clean Hands.” To paraphrase, a party with unclean hands that had committed wrong acts, loses legal standing towards the similar actions of others because of their actions. This is not a legal issue. But a president that has used “locker room” talk regarding sexually assaulting women has no standing by himself or his family to talk about morality.
We must all stand up to the hypocrisy of public officials across any party lines. These people need to be held accountable to “The People”. Calls to resistance are against all blatant hypocrisy, and unfortunately for our nation, we currently have a president and administration that is more focused on having a war with the media over its coverage fairness, with little self awareness that they and their party are the largest contributors to the negativity and obstruction that they have unapologetically promoted for so long.
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