Notwithstanding that Donald Trump has denounced racism, hatred, bigotry, Nazis, the KKK and white supremacists on numerous occasions, he is still considered a racist and/or a bigot and/or a Nazi by many on the left and even some on the right. So the question is, why?
Here’s one reason: He hasn’t done the denouncing in a way that you or I might have done it or for that matter in the way that it should have been done. I agree with those who have criticized him for not taking a much stronger, firmer and more definitive stance against all of these evils.
Here’s another: The facts of the matter in Charlottesville, Va., are — there were good people on both sides, and violence was present on both sides. The KKK, the neo-Nazis and other extreme right-wingers were there solely to make trouble and so were antifa and the “alt-left.” However, there were many people there peacefully exercising their First Amendment right of free speech, not marching with the extremists on either side who either supported the removal of the statues or were protesting their removal. But by stating these truths in a foolish attempt at evenhandedness, Trump came across as being soft on the neo-Nazis, KKK and other vicious right-wing extremists.
Do these things make him a bigot or a racist or a Nazi? Absolutely not. From the time he declared for the presidency I’ve described him as a very rich, very smart and very arrogant anal orifice. He says and does stupid things, doesn’t stick to his messaging, doesn’t focus on promoting his policies and thereby becomes his own worst enemy. But a racist, a bigot, a hater? No way. There’s a legal doctrine known as “preponderance of the evidence” whereby whether one is judged right or wrong, liable or not liable, gets determined not by proof beyond a reasonable doubt, but by figuratively loading the evidence onto a balance scale and seeing which side is “heavier.”
So let’s look at Trump’s side of the “scale.” He has a Jewish son-in-law, a Jewish daughter and most importantly Jewish grandchildren. He has a demonstrable track record of hiring and promoting women and minority employees in his businesses over many years. He is one of the largest purchasers of Israel Bonds and contributes to numerous Jewish causes and minority charities. He gave $1 million of his own personal funds to the help the victims of Hurricane Harvey. And finally, not one of his former (or for that matter current) employees has come forward with anything negative to say about the man. With the mainstream media, Democratic congressional leadership and many liberal organizations working 24/7 to dig up Trump “dirt,” isn’t it logical and reasonable to assume that after over a year in the political arena they’d have found at least one former employee with something negative to say about him — if in fact something is there to say? A misogynist? A bigot? A racist? I don’t think so. However, I do believe that he has certain blind spots that cloud and detract from the positive things he’s trying to do for the country.
While admittedly rough around the edges, he is still a very smart man. With no prior political experience he beat 16 mostly professional politicians for the Republican nomination. Against all odds he then beat an extremely powerful Democratic political organization for the presidency. He turned a $1 million loan into a mega-billion-dollar fortune. He has raised four adult children who not only love and admire him, but who are each smart, successful, well-spoken and respectful young adults.
Donald Trump is our president and the impeachment the left would like to see isn’t going to happen. Like it or not, he’s going to be our president for the next three-and-a-half years, and we therefore need to take a pragmatic position. I believe he will learn from his mistakes, and his daughter, sons, son-in-law and other advisers will help him realize the error of some of his ways.
To help facilitate this, the self-proclaimed “resistance” — the mainstream media, the “alt-left” and the liberals who follow it — need to morph back into the loyal opposition (emphasis on the word loyal). From the time we won our independence from England, whichever party has been in power has always had a loyal opposition helping to make us the greatest country in human history. Since Trump announced his candidacy, he has been unjustly attacked and vilified — continuously, viciously and mercilessly. It’s time to stop. Political differences notwithstanding, we need to be united as a country, we need to move forward, we need to focus on the positive things our president has accomplished, the good things that he’s doing and rely on those around him to help him recognize and correct the mistakes he makes.
Bottom line? As numerous other presidents have done, we need to allow him time to grow into the job. I believe he can, and I believe he will.
Bill Fox is a national board member of State of Israel Bonds, a national board member and chairman of the Middle Atlantic Region of Friends of the Israel Defense Forces and chairman and CEO of Fox Residential Auctions, LLC and Fox Commercial Auctions, LLC. (The opinions expressed are Fox’s own and do not represent those of any organization with which he is associated.)