Many people I talk with have settled for a half-hearted, laissez-faire attitude towards the political stupidity of this campaign season. Donald Trump’s “Pocahontas” jab at Elizabeth Warren is one of the dumbest examples yet of the abusive, irrelevant antics we tolerate because we don’t want Hillary Clinton to be our next president. He arouses precisely the kind of overreaction our wretchedly correct ideals have created.
Is that his point?
Trump is making the most of the political stupidity the nation has settled for in lieu of dealing with real problems. Insults from the stump draw attention to some of these problems, like border security and threats from Islam. They also entertain those of us with the good sense to not take much of what is said between now and November very seriously. Before we get there and this whole ugly display of American politics at its absolute worst draws to a close, here are seven of the dumbest examples imaginable of our political stupidity. Those responsible should be very ashamed.
1. Race is off limits
How did we get to be so insanely sensitive about race? Most of us have immigrants somewhere in our background. There is no good reason that race and ethnicity should be such a rhetorical minefield other than to draw attention and incite anger. Trump is taking anyone who reacts for a fool, knowing that remarks that run afoul of our stringent PC sensitivities will be met with outrage.
The political stupidity here isn’t what is being said. It’s that so many take it seriously.
Instead of worrying about a federal judge’s family history we should be worrying about why our government won’t keep Mexico on the Mexican side of the border. Instead of worrying about Elizabeth Warren’s background we should worry about what she might do if she gets tapped to be Hillary’s running mate. Here a clue from the senator how that’s going to work out:
These changes include improving the social safety net, making employee benefits portable, and adding more legal and regulatory certainty to the labor market.1
I don’t care where Warren came from. I’m a lot more concerned with what she means by “legal and regulatory certainty.”
2. What you do in bed makes you important
I don’t think about what other people do in the sack. It doesn’t seem like the sort of thing that should make a difference or chew up space in my thoughts.
Not everyone feels that way.
Defining us by our differences makes sex so important that when speaking of Pride Month the president implied that being LGBT comes before your identity as an American:
So every year, we set aside this month to celebrate the ways that so many lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans have helped to make our union just a little more perfect.2
When did sexuality take first place? These people didn’t make America more perfect because of who they sleep with or what sex they wish they were. The president reminded his audience that “Change can be slow” and “…progress is possible.3 We’ve heard that before, usually applied to low-income minorities who serve the Democratic Party by going nowhere.
That’s political stupidity for you.
The tragedy in Orlando will bring America together despite the best efforts of right and left to drive us apart. It also creates a problem for this president, who has extended himself on behalf of the Muslim community and has done his best to separate Islam from terrorism. How is he going to reconcile this with LGBTs, given what we’re learning about the shooter?
3. Politicians sold us socialism
Whose fault is this, the liars or those being lied to? Our willingness to press forward and throw away America’s economic success in exchange for cradle to the grave government support is absolutely appalling. How did the greatest economy on earth convince itself that Bernie Sanders was a good pick to run things? Because he said so and a scary number of us were foolish enough to believe him.
That’s one of the dumbest examples of our political stupidity that I can think of.
4. Voters trade scandal for four more years of Obama
We were warned decades ago. Since the Whitewater scandal and through eight-years in the White House questions about the Clintons and what they did or didn’t do keep coming back. Hillary’s stint at the State Department left a stink that still hasn’t gone away and will chew up most of the GOP’s time if she becomes president.
We don’t seem to care. Lots of us are ready to take another chance.
Was Obama really so good that we want to keep this thing going at any cost?
5. Americans matter less
Real Americans matter less would be more accurate. Phony Americans, 11 million or more, matter a lot and despite the pack of lies about rights, fairness, and values still being disseminated by Democrats they are just as phony as they were when they violated our border.
African Americans got the shaft from Obama, but we’ve all lost big on immigration. This is a historic failure of government, a refusal to protect the people because of unbridled political greed.
6. Republicans sniff victory and commit suicide
This answers the question about putting a Clinton in office. The GOP’s lose at any cost decision on the 2016 election – a contest we can win if prominent Republicans would keep their mouths shut – is another of the dumbest examples of political stupidity we will see in our lifetimes.
7. Capitulating to anyone who challenges us
Why does the country that made industrial, military, and economic history now shrink back from conflict? Political stupidity means capitulating to Muslims, to Mexico, to Russia, to Iran, to China, and to anyone else who takes advantage of our new refusal to stand up for ourselves.
That’s more than just stupidity. It’s national suicide. Why are so many of us willing to buy in?
Update June 15, 2016: Turning slaughter into a stump speech
Obama just handed us another example. His angry display yesterday couldn’t cover up a thinly disguised effort at Clinton campaign damage control. The explanation of why “radical Islam” is verboten was almost as absurd as blaming gun control laws for the deaths in Orlando.
We don’t expect honesty, but the refusal of this administration to confront reality is maddening.
Do Americans need assault weapons? No, they don’t. Will Democrats use any effort to curb their purchase as a foot in the door, just like Obama did with his immigration orders? Yes, they will.
Most important, when we talk about terror attacks what do we worry about?
This is a big problem for the Obama imitator who wants to be our next president and the White House knows it.