Hello, it’s me, Donald Trump’s better self. I know you don’t see me or hear from me very often. The boss keeps me locked up pretty tight, and the air holes in my box are small, and I just noticed he’s started to put tape over them. So before I expire completely, I just wanted to say one last thing.
Let’s not make “Send her back” the new chant at all the rallies, every time the boss brings up U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar’s name, which he apparently plans to do at every rally until further notice.
It’s vile. It’s ugly. It’s mindless. It’s racist, and probably sexist too.
Omar’s not perfect, and sometimes expresses herself in ways that feed the flames against her. She should figure out how to cut down on references that seem to reflect anti-Semitic tropes for example. I believe she’s working on that, although I don’t know.
But if you can let go of your tribal anger over the browning of America, perhaps you can see that the story of a child who fled from one of the poorest, most dangerous countries in the world to make a better life in America, and has risen, Jimmy Stewart-like (that’s a reference to “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington”) to a seat in Congress, is a pretty amazing, inspiring tale of a sort that could make us proud of our system.
Yes, she’s liberal, maybe rad-lib. If you’re conservative, you are completely entitled to disagree with everything she stands for as a substantive political matter. Do it. Express your views, while respecting those who disagree. After all, they’re the ones you have to persuade, unless you plan to deport everyone who disagrees with you.
Support her next opponent. Send him or her money. Go to Minneapolis and door-knock.
But don’t chant “Send her back.” It’s beneath you. It’s even worse than “Lock her up.” Look this square in the face. What are you becoming? You claim to be patriotic Americans who believe in the American dream. We don’t lock up those with whom we disagree, and we don’t deport them.
Addendum to the above post: When I wrote the piece above, speaking on behalf of Donald Trump’s better self, I was unaware that the actual Donald Trump has now said he doesn’t agree with the “Send her back” chant.
According to this Washington Post piece, Trump says he disagrees with the chant. Asked why he didn’t try to stop it, he said he did try to stop it by immediately talking over it. In fact, the Post reports, Trump paused for 13 seconds while the chant rose and spread through the crowd. So, a small lie, on the Trumpian scale, but at least he says he agrees with my imaginary version of Trump’s better self that chanting “Send her back” when Omar’s name is mentioned is wrong.
We’ll see if that ends it. If he means what he says, the next time the chant starts, he should do more than pause 13 seconds to let it build. He should tell the chanters that he disagrees, tell them why, and tell them to cut it out.
The Post follow-up piece also included remarks from Minnesota Rep. Tom Emmer, who chairs the National Republican Congressional Committee. Emmer agreed with Trump’s most recent line, saying there was “no place for that kind of [send her back] talk.”
But, the Post reported, Emmer also defended Trump for his tweets that suggested Omar and the three other minority lawmakers should “go back” to their ancestral countries. Emmer said “there’s not a racist bone in Trump’s body.” He went on to label the four young women Democrats known as “the Squad” as socialists, and said they are and should be considered the face and voice of the entire Democratic Party, which he said “should be called the new red army of socialists.”
I will seek an interview with Emmer to discuss this.