Monday, February 27, 2017

Trumpistas: Trump = America

The folks over at the Trumpista website American Greatness have a new piece up defining their brand of conservatism as, well, "Americanism."
The party of Obama and Hillary is the Anti-American Party. They want to put the American experiment behind us, to complete the Progressives’ 100-year project of progressively overthrowing the Constitution. 
Donald Trump has called himself “a common sense conservative.” What, we may ask, is common sense conservatism? One thing is certain: it means loving America. Trump wants to save America by rallying the American people around the effort to save the republic.
To which the proper response is — well, unprintable.

America is more than a limited government view of the Constitution — and that I have to tell my Trumpist friends this astounds me, makes me sorry for the narrowly legalistic view of what America is, has been, and should be that they think the spirit of this country can and should be contained in a particular modern interpretation of words written more than 200 years ago.

The folks at American Greatness — I've spent some time with them before they launched their effort to put a shiny gloss of respectability on Trump's narcissism — strongly believe that the Declaration of Independence and Constitution are not really separate documents, but that the Constitution flows, spiritually, from the words of the Declaration. The writers of both documents were not demigods, but they were men — flawed, often hypocritical men.

But they gave us this very important sentence:

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." 

That's an idea so broad that even the old white slaveholding men couldn't contain it.

Let's be clear: Trumpism holds that not all people are created equal. Today's AmGreatness piece includes this criticism of Democrats: "They are determined to flood our country with people from third world countries who are not interested in the American idea and Muslims who reject the American idea outright." It echoes the "Flight 93" sentence I quoted earlier today: “The ceaseless importation of Third World foreigners with no tradition of, taste for, or experience in liberty means that the electorate grows more left, more Democratic, less Republican, less republican, and less traditionally American with every cycle."

What you'll notice is that there is never any effort to recognize any folks from beyond our country's borders as individuals with varied ideas and tastes and beliefs. Instead, all brown people — let's be honest about who they mean here — are lumped together as secret tyrants who would mercilessly expose right-thinking Americans to the oppression of sharia, OSHA, and occasionally having to hear Spanish spoken in public.

This smearing of entire peoples, that's un-American.

The only way that the AmGreatness idea of "Americanism" makes sense is if "American" means, more or less, white and Christian.

Understand, though, that this will increasingly be the project of both Trump and his intellectual avatars. This isn't even the first time this week they've tried to define Trumpism as Americanism. They are wrong. They don't get to claim America for their ideas and their ideas only. And thank God. What an ugly, mean, selfish country this would be if they won.

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