another thoughtful reply to a Trumper

(via Quora)

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Scott Heskew
Reply by: Scott Heskew, Opinionated but well-read.

Well, first of all, you should never wade into political journalism without a healthy sense of skepticism. But… if your belief in something declines because it’s being repeated, I think you’ve moved beyond skepticism and into cynicism. You’re not examining arguments any more, but judging people. That’s unwise.

I’m confused, though, why you think there’s no dissent, no thinking, and no reflection. I’ve seen tens of thousands of words penned on this subject, and a lot of very sophisticated thinking deployed on the subject. Look at the evolution in the writing from conservative columnist David Brooks, for example, or how adept Megyn Kelly has become at cutting through lies and misinformation when interviewing candidates and their surrogates.

As for why “left wingers” like myself react so consistently to him, yes, I absolutely think he’s dangerous. And it’s personal for me.

My wife is an immigrant. Trump’s campaign has made her feel less welcome in America, and she feels less safe in this country after listening to his speeches and seeing the anti-immigrant rage that he is stoking. She already overhears more racist and anti-immigrant speech than she did a year ago, and I have trouble answering her when she asks me why Americans are so hateful towards foreigners. “We’re not all like him” is a hollow answer to give when Trump is polling 42% while bragging about sexual assault and drawing praise from racists.

Donald Trump has already damaged America; he has replaced respect and civil discourse with bullying and anti-intellectualism; he has undermined respect for science and education; he has fanned the flames of isolationism, sexism, racism and xenophobia; he has worsened ideological divides at a a time when the country is already too divided; he has attacked faith in our national institutions. He has dealt damage that will not easily be undone, and I literally lose sleep at night worrying over the prospect of the further damage he would do if elected.

This is not group-think. This is not shouting in unison. I’ve spent a lot of time in thought and reflection to arrive at this position. Donald Trump is hurting America, and he’ll hurt it more if we let him.

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