Trump does Nixon
Years ago, growing up in Massachusetts, I remember my dad espousing what he considered good conservative values. In some ways, I found him a prude. He had doubts about some liberal views, such as legalise drugs, Affirmative Action and so on.
Yet, my father believed in many reasonable things, such as equal rights for women and minorities, help for the needy, sick and elderly, people being paid a decent living wage and the simple concept of everyone getting along. That last one applied not merely to our country, but also the world. He felt we should have a strong defense, but not waste money on it.
Instead, we should try to work with the Soviets and Chinese, the two main communist nations at the time, to live together in peace. He felt we needed to be strong, but balanced.
I have to wonder what he would think of the neocons of today. No, I don’t have to wonder, I know what he’d say: they’re not real conservatives. The main reason is simple: they’re hypocrites.
My dad was no prude when it came to many things. In his youth and, even later in life, he wasn’t above visiting a wild nightclub, but he also felt that certain things should be private. If he’d seen some of the pictures of our current First Lady that are floating about the internet, he would have been upset.
On the other side, he would have thought Michelle Obama was a classy woman. Yet, think of the neocons who chided her for wearing a dress with her “guns” out, a dress that was merely sleeveless. They stay silent on Melania’s nudes.
My dad was also known for his dirty jokes, but, as with so many other things in his life, he knew when and where to tell them. No matter what, he always treated women properly. Strange though that the neocons have no problem with Trump’s comments on women and how he grabs them and treats them.
He was not one of those “America First” or “America, right or wrong” types. Of, even worst, the ones he truly hated were “America Always Right.” When my dad taught me about American history, he was always fair and balanced. He believed we should be honest about our history, ‘fess up to the bad and embrace the good. The important aspect for him was in those two words: fair and balanced.
My dad would have gone ballistic over Trump’s response to the statement that Putin was a killer. To brush it off by saying, we have killers right here in this country, would have enraged my father. Now, he would certainly admit that the statement was true, but that wouldn’t be the issue.
My father considered himself a killer because of some of the things he did during World War II, but that didn’t mean he’d ever insult his own country and he most definitely wouldn’t have put it on the same moral level as Russia. Yet, when Michelle Obama said she was proud to be an American for the first time in her life following the election of her husband, once again the neocons went bat crap crazy. Yet, they remained silent on not only that insult by Trump, but also countless others and his most recent outrage: revealing highly classified knowledge to the Russians in the Oval Office.
Then there’s Nixon. My dad voted for him, twice! He stood by Nixon during numerous revelations of his antics as president. There was one thing my dad put above mere party loyalty and that was his country. He fought to preserve all that we hold dear. He studied the Constitution in high school and knew many of its most important principles by heart.
My dad loved America. Gladly, he would have laid down his life to protect and defend it.
The “Saturday Night Massacre,” of 23 October 1973, was it for my dad. That night, then President Nixon fired the Attorney General, Elliot Richardson, for refusing to fire Archibald Cox, the special prosecutor during the Watergate scandal. Then Nixon fired the Assistant Attorney General, William Ruckelshaus, for refusing to fire Cox.
Eventually, Nixon found a complacent judge. He appointed him Acting Attorney General. That appointee first Cox.
In the eyes of my father, Nixon was a traitor to all we hold dear as a nation. My dad felt that there were two options for Nixon. He could resign or face impeachment.
Today, where are the neocons on Trump saying on the record that he fired the head of the FBI because he wouldn’t stop the investigation into collaborations between Russia and the Trump campaign? The man just admitted to obstruction of justice, which is an impeachable offense. I seem to recall Clinton impeached for the exact same charge.
Yeah, my dad would say quite emphatically that they are not real conservatives.
Combining the gimlet-eye, of Philip Roth, with the precisive mind of Lionel Trilling, AJ Robinson writes about what goes bump in the mind, of 21st century adults. Raised in Boston, with summers on Martha's Vineyard, AJ now lives in Florida. Most of the time he writes, but sometimes he works at Disney World to renew his fantasies and get a few dollars more. AJ writes, with insight and passion, about his family and his dog. His liberal, note the small "l," sensibilities often lead to bouts of righteous indignation, well focused and true.
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