I like many others have tried to figure out what evidence we clearly missed as Donald Trump stormed his way through the Rust Belt states to defeat Hillary Clinton. There will be extensive debate and literature on how the mainstream media and intelligentsia misrepresented or disillusioned itself regarding the reality of the electorate. I myself pointed to mistakes I made in evaluating the election, especially the ground game in Ohio.
But for me, this is more than a data argument..it is one of personal reflection.
As I look back, I definitely think I need to apologize to some people for how I reacted and behaved, especially regarding Trump.
I have a long-standing personal position that it isn’t worth getting angry about politics. However, Trump supporters did that to me. They would use trigger words that would get me into a spiral. They somehow angered me in ways liberal trolls never did.
But my fault was biting on the hook.
The irony of it is I knew I would regret that behavior later on, regardless of whether Trump or Hillary won the election. But I let people get under my skin…something I had promised myself I would not do. I will have to do better. And I apology for not having done so.
That said…I am still proud of the positions I took. Even looking back, in retrospect, I would not change how I voted, or what I said regarding policies and conservative principles. To me, without those principles, we simply become a demagogic movement, instead of an intellectual one. I want no part of that. My conscience is clear.
Some Trump supporter are angry that I have not departed from my positions. I will politely tell them they will have to live with it. At the same time, I am going to give Donald Trump all the support I can when he supports and advances conservative causes..because the conservative movement is my primary goal. When those goals are aligned with the Republican Party, I will fight for them; when they are not, they will not have my support. I have no idea if Donald Trump will consider people such as myself as his ally; but I will ally myself with Trump when it benefits the country, without hesitation.
On the other hand, my sympathy goes out to Democrats and Liberals. I feel your pain; four years ago, I was in the exact same position as you were: disillusioned beyond belief that the country was not the way I perceived it, and having no idea where we go from here.
That said: liberals need to take a deep breath, and move forward. It will not happen quickly or smoothly, but it must happen. Donald Trump is your President, for better or worse.
Personally, I will provide Trump the same approach that I would have for Hillary Clinton, or I did for Barack Obama. I believe all Presidents deserve a honeymoon period to acclimate to the most difficult job in the world. I think they deserve to make their arguments for new policies, and we should give them as much latitude as possible.
On the eve of his 2008 inauguration, I said this about the new President:
Mr. Obama is the American President. He is my president. I wish him no ill; in fact, if he does spectacularly, I will seriously consider voting for him in 4 years. But that does not mean that he should not be criticized.In fact, it is patriotic to criticize anyone and everyone who you disagree with politically. The political dialogue improves the country.
So, on this historic day, I wish Barack and Michelle Obama, and their two lovely daughters, all the congratulations and best wishes in the world. They will need our best wishes for what lies before them. And I hope Americans remember that the political fight is what makes us the greatest democracy in the world. I will fully support Mr. Obama when I agree with him, and fight tooth and nail when I don’t. I don’t think President Obama would want to have it any other way. As my hero, and Barrack Obama’s, Abraham Lincoln wrote to Horace Greeley on August 22, 1862,
I shall try to correct errors when shown to be errors; and I shall adopt new views so fast as they shall appear to be true views…I intend no modification of my oft-expressed personal wish that all men, everywhere, could be free.
I actually make a very similar pledge about Trump. He is my President, the American President. If he does a good job, I will absolutely consider voting for him in four years. But he should be criticized when deserved, and I believe it is my patriotic duty to do so. But I absolutely wish his family the best, and wish him the best as we move forward.