A Liberal Press Didn’t Start The Fire With Trump
If anyone is upset that Trump isn’t being treated fairly, they have forgotten how Trump came in with guns blazing, tearing down as much Obama legacy as he could.
When I see articles leveling criticism at the Trump Administration, I remember reading how in 2017 the Trump Administration was moving hard and fast to break or erase anything associated with President Barack Obama. I remember reading those words, “hard and fast”, “everywhere”, and that the goal was to leave the Democrats dazed, confused and upset. Riling up the Democrats was a matter of principle to the Trump Administration.
I remember how Trump criticized his opponents before and after he took office. I remember how he called them “losers” in so many ways. I remember how he framed his campaign and his administration of the government as a war against liberals. Trump basically called anyone who wasn’t with him, “against him”. I remember how he said, “I won. They lost.” And that he meant it.
Trump supporters complain that the liberal press isn’t giving Trump his due. They claim that the press is reluctant to publish any stories that portray the president as a good man. Trump does have his problems. He’s seen a few divorces. He doesn’t wear his wedding ring. He has a weight problem. He uses a lot of bully talk.
His antagonism with the press is legendary. If there is a problem in his mind with any member of the press, he will refuse to call upon them. He will eject them. He will walk away if challenged. He expects appreciation, not a challenge.
I suppose this could be expected. He’s a billionaire and he’s used to getting things his way. He’s used to people just taking his orders without complaint. He’s used to people agreeing with him in public because they know where they go if they don’t. He’s trying to run the government like his business, and the federal government isn’t one of his businesses.
The government is subject to criticism. The government must obey the 1st Amendment. The government is subject to scrutiny. The government works for all of us. This is not an easy thing to accept for a billionaire who is used to privacy, used to top-down authority and used to obedience with the threat of termination as the leash on his subordinates.
When I compare presidents, when I look at the way they interact with the press, I see a stark contrast. Where Donald Trump is combative and volatile, Barack Obama was calm and could collect a response to criticism. He didn’t allow himself to be riled up. He managed his feelings. Trump doesn’t manage his feelings well. He can’t “fire” the press. He can make their lives difficult, but they will still have a job if Trump bans them from the press briefing room. I have never seen or heard of Obama doing any of that to anyone.
During the debates, I saw candidate Trump insult people. I saw him interrupt other people. I saw him call people liars on camera. I never saw Obama do that. Where Trump rose to the challenge with insults, Obama rose to the challenge with facts.
I was an Obama fan when he was running for president. I voted for hope and change. After 8 years of watching him, I grew tired of him. I later learned that during his administration, the Democrats lost 1000 seats across the country. Trump is going through something similar. The GOP is not having a good 4 years with Trump.
But I think it’s fair to say that both Trump and Barack Obama had to contend with a fair amount of hatred and protests against them. They both had to contend with legitimate criticisms of how they managed power. But of the two, Obama was a cooler head. Obama reserved himself and responded to the criticism, he did not react.
That might have something to do with the way they were raised. Relative to Trump, Obama was poor as a child. He was raised by a single mom. Obama worked his way through school with his mom’s support. Trump had everything handed to him from his parents. Trump had connections where Obama had to build them. As a black man, Obama had to deal with institutionalized racism and he overcame it. Trump had none of those barriers to his success.
I’m no fan of either man. I’m not really interested in their identities, or what they want. I’m only interested in the policies that each man promotes. I can say that on balance, I much prefer the policies promoted by Obama than by Trump. I also saw Obama as being more compassionate than Trump is, even now. I am not seeing Trump express much compassion for anyone.
I suppose that is the one thing that I really don’t like about Trump. He seems genuinely aloof from the rest of us and our struggles. I’d like to believe that he has feelings and warm regard for “the rest of us”. But I think those feelings if he has them at all, are reserved only for his supporters. I’ve watched a few of his rallies, and he does show that to his supporters. I see him smile and carry on at his rallies. He really enjoys his rallies. But woe unto anyone who opposes him, for Trump is a righteous one.
I would support Trump if I could see that he’s working towards a general good for us all. I would support Trump if I could see that he cares for us all. I would support Trump if I could see that he is making a sincere effort to unite the country. I’ve heard that he’s not as conservative as some people make him out to be. I’ve heard that there is a liberal side to him. Maybe. But I don’t really see him reaching out to the liberals to say, “I have something for you. Here. Have a look.”
Trump is a master of media. I’ve seen him take dirt about him and blow right past it. He’s had affairs, paid off porn stars, divorces, and made some really unkind remarks about women, and all of that would be fatal to the presidential campaigns of most ordinary men. Trump overcame all of that with help from his supporters. Trump was elected with help from our mainstream media, despite his antagonism towards the press. Trump and his supporters might learn to take the good with the bad. Just like Obama did.