To my Republican friends: It’s time to let Trump go
Dahleen Glanton, Contact Reporter, Chicago Tribune July 19, 2018
When a friend is in trouble, our instinct is to try and steer them away from danger.
Sometimes that means putting the friendship on the line by saying things they don’t want to hear. You gently nudge them toward the light when their eyes are blind to the truth.
This message is for my Republican friends — those smart and compassionate people I argue with fiercely over political ideology but with whom I share an unfaltering respect for our democracy.
My friends, you are in an abusive relationship with Donald Trump. It is time to let him go.
It is clear that you have struggled with your victory in putting Trump into the White House. He wasn’t your first choice as a mate, but with the country’s changing demographics, you feared the glory days of conservative governing were over.
Then Trump extended his hand. And you accepted it, though tepidly.
Some of you fell for his cunning promise to go to Washington and drain the swamp. You were disappointed early on when he instead created a bigger swamp and filled it with crooks and bigots who have nothing in common with you.
Many of you, though, found him so deplorable from the start that you could not cast your ballot for him. But a year and a half into the relationship, you have decided to settle in and just see how things go.
Most of the time, you are miserable. You cried with the rest of us when you saw refugee children separated from their parents at the border. You detest his bigoted and misogynistic behavior. You still cringe when he mentions that ridiculous wall.
You hold your breath whenever he steps onto the world stage, fearing that he will at the very least embarrass you, or at worst, weaken the nation. You watched in horror as he stood beside Vladimir Putin and sided with Russia over America regarding meddling in the 2016 election.
You didn’t buy that pitiful forced apology, where he claimed his betrayal was not intentional but rather a simple misspoken word. But you held your tongue and accepted it, because that’s what people in abusive relationships tend to do.
You tell yourselves over and over that no relationship is perfect. When friends try to warn you that Trump is no good, you point out the way he has shown his love.
You explain that Trump turned out to be more politically conservative than most Republicans ever thought he could be. And that he’s has been awfully good to you. He’s given you a Supreme Court justice who thinks like you, and you are about to welcome a second.
He has flooded the federal courts with right-wing conservatives who agree with the direction you think the country should be headed. And look at the stock market, you say. Everybody who had money to begin with has gotten richer.
These things alone make up for any pain he has caused on the sidelines, you surmise. You have tried to convince yourselves that the benefits of having a Republican, any Republican, at the helm of the country far outweigh the bad.
Perhaps you are beginning to think that maybe a second presidential term might not be as tough as it might seem. There is a chance you could get a third Supreme Court pick who will push the high court to the right for generations to come.
Deep inside, however, you know how selfish that would be. It is clear that another four years under Trump could bring irreparable harm to America. You are flirting with calling it quits.
You have never trusted him, anyway. Now you suspect that the man who stands at the helm of the nation may not have its best interests at heart. You aren’t sure that he grasps the magnitude of his actions in the presence of adversaries. You cannot depend on him to stand with U.S. allies in a united front.
You suspect that the rumors are true, that he is in love with someone else on the other side of the world. But you are paralyzed to confront him.
So you continue to set yourselves up for disappointment, secretly hoping that his latest misstep will be the one that does him in. But he rises from the rubble unscathed, perhaps even stronger and more vicious than before.
When will it end, you wonder. Who can stop this nightmare, you ask?
Only you, my Republican friends, can stop him immediately.
The rest of us are pawns in Trump’s “Game of Thrones.” You are our Lord Snow and our Dragon Queen. With no political strength in Washington right now, we are like “smallfolk” with no real voice.
Republicans, you have to stop this abuser before it’s too late. If your party is to survive this tumultuous reign, you must find the courage to stand up to Trump in your own House — before the rest of us have to come to your rescue and kick him out.
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