Burke: Those still with Trump an increasingly hateful lot

By Tom Burke

After Charlottesville only the worst fervently support Donald Trump: racists, white supremacists, Ku Klux Klanners, Nazis and anti-Semites. Anyone with the slightest modicum of decency rejects Trump, his philosophy, and his hateful words.

For the past ten months I’ve tried to objectively illustrate how I think Trump falls short of being the president our country so desperately needs. As a result there has been spirited, pro and con debate here and via email.

I appreciate everyone’s perspective.

But the debate ended last Tuesday. On that day Trump transcended civilized discussion and exposed his true nature. It was ugly. Despicable. Abhorrent. Ignorant. Un-Christian. Un-American.

Simply put, there is no moral equivalence between American Nazis and those opposed to them. Bigots bearing torches and chanting “Blood and soil!” “Sieg heil!” and “Jews will not replace us!” echoed Hitler’s SA and SS as they rampaged on Kristalnacht. Those in Charlottesville chanted the same slogans as those who tattooed numbers on forearms at Bergen-Belson and put 9 million Jews in gas chambers, stuffing their corpses into crematoriums at Auschwitz and Belzec and Treblinka.

Those swastika-tattooed marchers honored the butchers our fathers and grandfathers fought to the death on Omaha Beach, at Kassarine Pass, at Anzio, Salerno and Bastonge. (And if you don’t know those places and who fought there, shame.)

Trump’s tortured, ignorant logic comparing Robert E. Lee to Washington and Jefferson is further proof of his utter failure to understand American history or morality.

Yes, Washington owned slaves (whom he freed on his death). Jefferson did as well. But both men led the thirteen colonies from a distant king’s oppression to freedom and are justly honored as fathers of their country.

What did Lee do? Lee betrayed his oath as a serving Army officer and turned traitor, claiming loyalty to his state transcended loyalty to his country. Lee fought and helped kill more than 750,000 Americans to preserve slavery — for four years he battled to keep men, women and children in the cruelest bondage, and he abandoned every moral principle of Christian doctrine supporting an economic system that made white men rich and kept black men under the lash.

Lee was no American hero. He was a vile turncoat who doesn’t deserve a statue in his honor; he forsook his honor when he forsook his oath. (And the argument the Civil War was fought for “states’ rights” is so childish as to be laughable. The only right the South fought for was the right to own another human being.)

Donald Trump is an utter failure as president and as a man.

Need proof? Read something other than Breitbart News. Watch something other than Fox. Listen to someone other than Rush Limbaugh.

‘Cause you’ll discover Trump is being condemned by people of every political persuasion. Leaders of companies such as JP Morgan, Campbell Soup, Merck, Blackstone, GE, Under Armour, Tesla, and Johnson & Johnson rejected Trump’s false equivalences and cut their ties with him. And the heads of all the military services issued statements trumping Trump by condemning the actions of the racists at Charlottesville. Leading Republicans, including Paul Ryan, Jeff Flake, John McCain, Sen. Todd Young, Orin Hatch, Will Hurd and Marco Rubio also condemned him. Even a Fox News talker denounced Trump’s failure to explicitly condemn neo-Nazis and the KKK.

Finally, lets address Trump’s absurd contention the blame lies with “both sides.” Standing up to Nazis, white supremacists, Klanners, anti-Semites and racists isn’t the same as being a Nazi or racist. Quite the opposite; it’s our moral duty to stand against their abhorrent philosophies. God willing, if enough Germans stood against Hitler, WWII might never have happened. Would Trump equate late-1920’s anti-Nazi Berliners with Hitler and Ernst Rohm’s Sturmabteilung (SA), as he tries equating todays anti-Nazi, anti-Klan demonstrators with tiki-torch-bearing, modern-day Brown Shirts?

As John McCain tweeted, “There’s no moral equivalency between racists & Americans standing up to defy hate & bigotry. The President of the United States should say so.”

Trump claims he was waiting for facts before condemning the perpetrators, “You don’t make statements that direct unless you know the facts. Here is the thing: When I make a statement, I like to be correct.” What crap!

Like he was correct about Obama’s birth certificate and citizenship and Ted Cruz’s father and Lee Harvey Oswald; and his opposition to the Iraq war, his 3 million illegal voters, the size of his unauguration crowd, the terror attack in Sweden that never happened, the John Pershing myth, and the mythical wiretap on Trump Tower.

Donald Trump may have billions of dollars in the bank. But in terms of courage, Christian values, morality, honesty and leadership he is totally, utterly, abjectly bankrupt. God help the United States of America.

Tom Burke’s email address is t.burke.column@gmail.com.

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