I live in a cocoon of sorts and as a result, my record of prediction resembles more of a wish list than a keen grasp of political reality. The volume of gloating on my social media feed after the election of Donald J. Trump as president attests to how out of touch I am. More than one “friend” has pointed out my inability to read the political tea leaves both here in the US or in Israel where I was convinced last year that the end of Bibi was nigh.
Mea culpa, I actually believed that a majority of Americans would vote for the more qualified and capable candidate, that they would reject the no-holds-barred, take-no-prisoners campaign of a misogynist, xenophobe, racist, uncouth, tax-evading, squelching, carnival barker whose most vocal supporters were white supremacists and anti-Semites. I believed that the optimism that swept Reagan, Clinton and Obama into office would trump (pun intended) negativism and hate.
I am however, a keen observer and while I may not have a crystal ball I do I have enough insight, knowledge and awareness to reflect and analyze what did and did not happen. One thing I can tell you for sure: the right wing and Orthodox Jewish supporters of Donald Trump did little if anything to get him elected. His margin of victory in states with any significant Orthodox presence was much greater than their numbers — and forget about New York, where he was soundly rejected. Despite his Orthodox son-in-law, Trump owes them nothing and if he stays true to form will do what is best for the Trump brand — not Israel, not Jews, just Trump.
I suppose that my distaste for Trump in the minds of the clueless is equivalent to their hatred for Hillary Clinton. They are wrong. Hillary Clinton for all her faults real or perceived, does not make fun of the disabled, claim Mexicans are rapists, ridicule the parents of a fallen soldier, tolerate support from racists, or call for banning a whole religion from entry into our country. Mrs. Clinton’s defense of her husband against charges of sexual misconduct and bad judgment regarding an email server are not comparable in any way, shape or form to Trump’s vile and contemptible bullying.
I have been waiting for 16 years from when Clinton was first elected to the senate from New York for her to throw Israel under the bus and champion all of Israel’s enemies the same way I have been waiting for President Obama to do the same for the past eight. I’m also waiting for it to be revealed that Obama is a Muslim placed here by the Ayatollah to destroy America, that Santa Claus is real and that the tooth fairy put those quarters under my childhood pillow. For those who will reply that Obama and Clinton did in fact throw Israel under the bus with the Iran deal — last I saw Israel was still standing strong with nary a worry about Iran, ISIS, Hezbollah or Hamas — or at least seems poised and ready for all possible aggression. When mindless knee-jerk support for a world military power is an excuse for tolerance of hatred you have a screwed up value system — take stock.
I will not make patronizing comparisons of Trump’s election to the rise of Hitler, but I will call out children of Holocaust survivors and Jews who refer to the Holocaust at every opportunity, who ignore Trump’s racism and xenophobia on behalf of their own financial interests or perceived puritanical Zionism. I admit to being an elitist, leftist, coastal, liberal who is out of touch with the America that is south and west of New Jersey. I admit that I cling to a naïve hope that Israel will one day make peace with her neighbors and not live in a constant state of war.
However, I won’t wait for the mostly Orthodox Jews (it wasn’t even close in the non-Orthodox world) who support Trump to admit that he is a narcissist, pathological liar and prejudiced against even them, because like a fallen drunk taken out of Kiddush club and dropped on third base, they woke up and thought they hit a triple. Guess what, misguided Ortho Trump voters? You didn’t elect Trump; people that hate you did.