What Trump and Cohen Reveal About Us

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Given my experience working for Mr. Trump, I fear that if he loses the election in 2020 that there will never be a peaceful transition of power.
– Michael Cohen

Michael Cohen’s testimony before Congress didn’t reveal anything Americans didn’t already know. I’m fairly certain Trump’s defenders are still defending him, and Trump’s critics are still criticizing him. So that really hasn’t moved the needle at all.

Sure, there’s some more¬†concreteness regarding other charges surrounding Donald Trump. Cohen presented evidence that solidified the accusations regarding Trump’s campaign finance violations and his now defunct charity organization.

His testimony didn’t answer the question of Russian collusion, though that wasn’t really necessary. What we learned is that Donald Trump is every bit as petty, self serving, and double dealing today as he has been his entire life. No surprises there.

But does any of that change anything, really? When we push beyond the accusations leveled by Cohen (and others) and the denials offered by Trump and his supporters, it seems like we’ve been here before, doesn’t it? Running in the same circles.

Trump’s supporters are loyal to Trump and believe that they are entitled to their political ends, regardless of the consequences or the necessary moral compromises, because they are terrified of the alternative described for them by their propaganda.

Trump’s critics oppose Trump and believe they are entitled to their political ends, regardless of the consequences or the necessary moral compromises, because they are also terrified of the alternative described for them by their propaganda.

These two groups see each other as existential obstacles to their political happiness, but, let’s be honest, where these two men have failed to be. Right around 90% of Republicans approve of Donald Trump, despite the obvious lies and criminal allegations.

The Republicans simply don’t care what criminal mischief Trump may be guilty of, and they never will. You know what’s worse? With some very minor tweaking of his positions on just a few issues, his party affiliation and support would be reversed.

The difference between shark and shark food is razor thin between the two parties, yet they still refuse to look for social and political arrangements that allow them to live together. Isn’t that the ultimate struggle of any functional society?

It’s not like there will ever not be leftists. Every right-wing family has a left-wing sibling that won’t shut up about inequality. Every left wing household has a tiresome right wing relative that won’t shut up about illegal immigration.

The question comes down to how do we live with one another, even though we will never totally agree? Are we doomed to endless attempts to vex and offend one another? Does no one actually want to live in peace with their neighbor anymore?

If living in peace with your neighbor is in fact the minimal definition of a society, are we interested in continuing to pretend to be a single society, or are we such infantile snowflakes that we can’t even allow people to have different opinions?

I’d like to think America remains a country that can accommodate different opinions. What about you?


Liberty is For The Win!

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