Donald’s Lightbulb


Do I look like Dirty Harry? Whaddya think?

I don’t know Donald Trump but I’m convinced that I don’t like him, an opinion, mindless as it is, which is shared with a large number of others who also don’t know him. He’s a businessman, a deal-maker, bombastic and arrogant with a public persona which lacks warmth. So, there. Suck it up. Take it or leave it.
I think his executive order barring travel from certain Muslim countries was rash and mean-spirited, at the cost of maximum social abrasion. It is probably giving the Trump administration too much credit to think they planned it that way. And yet I cannot get behind all the hyperbolic comparisons in the form of highly charged and mostly baseless emotive protests against him simply because they are far too numerous and completely disproportionate, the voice of a baying mob. I can’t line up with the idea that he’s a uniquely bad president, possibly the worst ever; that he’s ‘abnormal’ – someone we must never ‘normalise’. Why not? Because there simply isn’t enough hard information and, incidentally, where did we develop the skill or earn the right to suggest such things? I can’t do that for two reasons, first, because decisions made in the past have been as morally reprehensible as those being made today and there was nothing approaching the backlash we’ve seen in recent days. Secondly, the simple reason that treating Trump as abnormal implicitly normalises that which preceded him. It whitewashes history. It forgives, or at least dilutes, the crimes and misdemeanours of his predecessors.
The executive order which caused all the fuss is morally unacceptable since it is tantamount to collective punishment. It is also strategically dubious since many terrorists are home-grown or came from countries other than the seven on which the ban is levied. Finally, its implementation was clumsy and caused quite unnecessary distress and uncertainty, so it was, overall, a bad call. Trump gained power in part by trading on fear of immigrants; many of whom have, of course, hugely benefited the societies where they have made their homes. Of course, this is only true for those who have elected to adopt the cultural norms of their host nation and contribute enthusiastically to them. Those who huddle in Shari’a-led ghettoes will never benefit from all that is on offer and will spend a miserable existence seething and fulminating on the back burner of society.
But, what has gone before? There’s a strong argument to suggest that the war in Syria descended into barbarity in part because President Obama encouraged the rebels, and the Sunni majority population of Syria who supported them, promising them arms and protection, and then abandoned them. When that didn’t work, Obama went on to release billions of dollars in funds to the Iranian regime, whose forces and Shia militia in Syria have done much, if not most, of the killing there these past six years. The new funds helped the Iranians fuel the effort to ethnically cleanse Sunnis from Syria, leading many to seek sanctuary in Europe and beyond. While millions of people in America, Britain and elsewhere have protested Trump’s refugee policies in just one week, they had little to say about Obama’s foreign policies over the last eight years. He deported more immigrants than any other President in history, but he was a nice guy, thus can be forgiven. He stopped Iraqi immigration for six months in 2011 to ‘re-evaluate the vetting process’. Wait a moment – we’ve heard that somewhere before, surely. One and a half million people have signed a protest demanding that Trump’s State visit to the UK should be cancelled. The matter is to be debated in Parliament on 20th February, coincident with a planned mass protest initiated by the fatuous Left, who imagine that the thousands of man-hours spent in mobilisation will make an iota of difference. Where were the protests (apart from outbreaks of migrant violence) as thousands died trying to reach Greece or Italy – partly as the consequence of a war in Libya, in which the Obama administration, along with Britain and France, played a decisive role?  Or, when during Obama’s final week in office, many Cubans with legal visas were reportedly detained at U.S. airports, and then sent back. And why weren’t there huge rallies demanding to allow in the Yazidis, fleeing danger, death and slavery and with nowhere to go?  In 2014, just 250 Yazidi protesters massed outside No 10 handing in a letter calling upon David Cameron to end the ISIS massacre, but where was the moral outrage then? For many activists, ‘wokeness’ – being conscious of societal norms and injustices – is merely a social-sorting mechanism. Wokeness isn’t about injustice, as such. It is about caring about the “right people”  in a way that emphasises our moral superiority over others and cements our place in the sociopolitical hierarchy of our choice. All the little snowflakes outside Berkeley – are you paying attention yet? Just being able to spell the word ‘fascist’ on your placard doesn’t give you the right to use it indiscriminately. There are endless examples. Angry placard-wavers whose agenda is narrow and unilateral don’t deserve to be identified with great causes.  Until they can speak out against the sixteen nations where the presentation of an Israeli passport bans entry, or they identify radical Islam as a real threat to world peace and take to the streets to condemn it, their interests would be better served by staying at home.


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