Strabo, Geography, book 1, chapter 49
Donald Trump is rapidly surrounding himself with the ideological dregs of
ancient Greece the Republican Party. First, he taps former Tea Party darling Sarah Palin, fresh from quitting her own TV channel, to be a member of his cabinet. Then, the infamous McCarthyite Ann Coulter appoints herself to be Trump’s Secretary of Homeland Security, which might seem a stretch if not for George W. Bush’s appointment of political hack Michael “You’re doing a heck of a job” Brown in 2000.
Coulter was speaking last week at the Eagle Forum’s Collegian Summit at the Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C. when she anounced, in answer to a question,
“I would like to be the head of Donald Trump’s Homeland Security. I’ll get it all done before breakfast…I think I could kind of guess who the criminals are going to be at least 50 percent of the time. People who don’t speak English.”
2300 years ago, Eratosthenes, the guy who measured the earth’s circumference with a remarkable degree of accuracy, would have told Coulter she was wrong. 2300 years after Eratosthenes, Republican gatherings are sounding more and more like a world where there are just “Greeks and Barbarians.” Just listen to Coulter sing a paean of praise to Anglo-Protestant White Nationalist Trumpism:
Asked, “What do you think of Trump?” Coulter answered, “Oh, I love Trump. I love him. I think he can win the nomination and I can think he can win as a third party.” According to Coulter, Trump entering the election is the only way immigration was going to be brought up:
There would not be one question on immigration but for Trump running. It would have been all about, you know, transgenderism, gay marriage and global warming. Could we get to the one most important issue to America according to polls? But I was thinking about it and for one thing he really is making the other Republicans look awfully pale in comparison, and to compare it to Ross Perot who took 20 percent of the vote in 1992. Twenty percent of the vote! Ross Perot is really funny looking. He’s a little guy, his ears stick straight out, he has a funny accent, he dropped out of the race claiming the CIA was disrupting his daughter’s wedding, and it was before cable news, the Internet, and talk radio. Oh, and it’s been another twenty years of lies from the Republicans. So Trump is a way more attractive candidate…he and his entire family are used to being in the public eye…you don’t have him being funny looking with his ears sticking out and being a little guy, um, he is a fantastic speaker, Americans are angrier than they were before. I mean, back then, Perot got 20 percent of the vote because of one lie from the first George Bush. This time we have been lied to for thirty years: ‘We are going to secure the border.’ Thirty years we’ve been lied to! I now think – it just occurred to me last week – I now think if he sticks it out he could win the nomination. I know there’ll be setbacks, he’ll go down in the polls and I don’t want any of you laughing at me, um, he could end up dropping out because, why is he going through this? I think anybody good running for office, it sucks running for office. He lost a hundred million dollars already, although he may get it back with some of those lawsuits. Um, if he continues, I think he can, I mean he is more likely to be the next president than Jeb Bush or Marco Rubio, I’ll tell you that.
Yes, as always, Coulter was being deliberately provocative. But this is the sort of thing you can say to a conservative audience and still be taken seriously. Not being funny-looking is a prerequisite for president? Old Abe Lincoln should have stayed in the Wilderness, because look at his big old ears. It’s a trait he shares with the man who is president because of Abe Lincoln, Barack Obama.
All this brought us to the money shot. Asked “what is the standard for what is best for America and who gets to determine that?” Coulter answered, “Well, I think I should.”
I would like to be the head of Donald Trump’s Homeland Security. I’ll get it all done before breakfast. I’m only slightly joking with that. I don’t think it’s that hard to figure out. I mean it’s not that hard to figure out are you taking in more than you’re paying in. We used to do it pretty well. It was a lot easier when we didn’t have a welfare state and could be laissez-faire: you can’t make it, you better go home or you’re starving. Well that doesn’t exist anymore. But, um, any criminal, any possibility of a criminal, um, do not pass go, you’re gone, and by the way, I think I could kind of guess who the criminals are going to be at least 50 percent of the time. People who don’t speak English…they don’t understand the culture, the language, and worst of all, we’re not even teaching that anymore. I mean, not only did people prove their hardiness to get here by vomiting all the way across the Atlantic Ocean…and then if they couldn’t make it, it was starve or go home, um, but there was no pussy-footing around. We’re assimilating you, you’re here and you’re going to be an American. There will be no celebration of Cinco de Mayo, there will be no Ramadan, in fact there won’t even be a Feast of the Immaculate Conception – No, we are an Anglo-Protestant country, and you will learn about the Battle of Valley Forge.
Well, there wouldn’t be any reason for the Pope to visit, would there?
The Department of Homeland Security has as its mission, “preventing terrorism and enhancing security; managing our borders; administering immigration laws; securing cyberspace; and ensuring disaster resilience.” Ann Coulter would be a lousy Secretary of Homeland Security. Like Evangelicals who think the Bible is entirely about gay people, she’d spend all her time chasing around people who don’t speak English.
It’s funny – and indicative of the moral failings of conservatism – that the days when people were just left to “starve or die” are seen as the “good old days.”
Nor does Coulter appreciate the dangers faced by immigrants crossing our southern border: heat and dehydration, hypothermia on cold desert nights, drowning in a canal on the Rio Grande, falling victim to violence from human smugglers, gangs, or even the men guarding the Mexican border.
In 2010, 253 bodies were found in the Arizona desert alone. That doesn’t include bodies not found, or those who died elsewhere, or those who were robbed, or those who were raped, or sold into slavery.
No, it is safe to say these people prove their hardiness by the time they cross into the United States.
What was truly chilling about Coulter’s Q&A was her callous disregard for human life, and for the religious tolerance upon which this country was founded. Like other Republicans, she wants a return to an America that never truly existed; one frozen in time, immune to change, and dedicated to the idea of a nation established solely by and for Anglo-Protestants.
It is safe to say a place built for the likes of Donald Trump, Sarah Palin, and Ann Coulter, is no place envisioned by our Founding Fathers, or even third-century B.C. Alexandrian Eratosthenes, who thought it made more sense to divide people not along ethnic lines, but along the lines of good and bad qualities.
Coulter thinks she knows who is who, but she’s about 2300 years behind the times.