Donald Trump announced Saturday from Sioux City, Iowa, that even shooting somebody would not cost him votes. Granted, Iowa always brings out the worst in Republican candidates, but seriously? Who says that?
Trump does. Speaking of how loyal his supporters are, he proclaimed, “I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters, OK?” To laughter, he added, “It’s like it’s incredible.”
Watch courtesy of CNN:
According to Trump, all his opponents are “soft” and apparently, too soft to just start shooting down people on the street.
It hardly surprises anyone at this point if Trump is right, that his supporters are deranged enough to vote for him even if he starts gunning down innocent bystanders on the street. Or that they think the idea is funny, and not appalling.
After the rally, CNN tried to get Trump to clarify his statement – though it is difficult to imagine such a blunt statement requires any clarification – but so far Trump has not responded. Maybe he thinks it’s a stupid question as well.
Ted Cruz, Trump’s now arch-rival, one of those people Trump said is “soft,” could only shake his head in response when told. “I will let Donald speak for himself,” Cruz responded. “I can say I have no intention of shooting anybody in this campaign.”
Well, that’s a relief. There is something to be said for men who are too soft to shoot down innocent people on the street. Very little to be said for those who will.
Yet rather than denounce Trump, Cruz jokes about it. And according to Glen Beck, Cruz is the next George Washington. Cruz’s response proves he is not.
Of course, of Beck himself Trump says, “Glenn Beck-every time I see him, he’s crying. He’s a whack job,” Trump said. “What a mess. Is this guy OK?”
Maybe so. But Beck is not the one joking about gunning down innocent people in the street. When did it start to be “whack job” to cry publicly, but not whack job to joke about shooting people?
And what has the GOP come to when it is its front runner who is talking about shooting random people on the street as a show of his vote-worthiness?
True, a month ago he mused about killing journalists like his hero Vladimir Putin, whose veterans he is so concerned about, because American can’t be great again without healthy Russian veterans.
At the time, he made a big show of seeming to consider the proposition. Speaking to his fanboys and fangirls in Grand Rapids, Michigan (stupid Republican comments are not limited to Iowa), he said of jouranlists, “I would never kill them. I would never do that…Uh, let’s see, uh? No, I would never do that.”
Set aside for the moment the Republican response – Trump’s response – if Barack Obama suddenly announced he could shoot somebody and not lose votes. What is in any way appealing about a man who wants to be president talking in such an irresponsible manner?
Once again, Donald Trump has exposed his complete unsuitability for the office of President of the United States. I would say that the Republican Party can and must do better, but it cannot and will not. This is what they wanted, this is what they created.
This built this. And they did it alone.
We can stand by in horrified silence as Republicans abandon every norm of human decency, or we can speak out. And we can vote. And hope you don’t run into Donald Trump on your way. You never know.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.