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The Republican Responsibility to Reject Trump

| May 8, 2016

donald trump

The great white hope. (Marc Nozell)

In Franklin Roosevelt’s first 100 days, back in the grime of the Great Depression, he set up the Federal Emergency Relief Administration that immediately addressed the needs of the poorest of the unemployed. He created the Civilian Conservation Corps that put 2.5 million Americans back to work. He signed the National Recovery Act that started a big infrastructure construction program, spurring job creation, ending child labor and increasing wages. He set up the Tennessee Valley Authority that built dams, improved farming conditions for the poor and spread electricity to rural homes. And between his fireside chats and constant optimism with reporters, he single-handedly restored Americans’ confidence in themselves.

pierre tristam column flaglerlive It wasn’t all peachy. The New Deal failed more often than it succeeded. The “malefactors of great wealth,” in the other Roosevelt’s phrase, had declared war on the president long before Pearl Harbor upstaged them. FDR was prone to gargantuan blunders, like his fixation on balancing the budget instead of on more spending (which led to the Roosevelt Recession early in his second term) and his court-packing plan. But in a design so grand as the New Deal it was enough that a few successes transformed the nation. It laid the foundation for the sharpest compression of inequality, the broadest reduction in poverty and the greatest expansion of the middle class this nation has ever known.

We don’t have anything like a national crisis to speak of these days, nothing comparable to 1932, anyway. Barack Obama veered us away from that. Which makes Donald Trump’s planned first 100 days that much more shocking for the caliber of their deadbolts. According to interviews he gave various media, he intends to design the wall he wants Mexico to pay for, create the “deportation force” that would forcibly expel 11 million undocumented immigrants,  immediately ban all Muslim immigration, set up the process to dismantle Obamacare, which brought health insurance to 11 million people and ended the threat of bankruptcy for countless others, announce to creditors that the United States may not make good on its debts, make torture legal again, and presumably continue to use his equivalent of the fireside chat to communicate with the American people: his Twitter feed, from where he’s launched more insults in 140 characters than Andrew Dice Clay at his younger best could manage in 140 minutes. (The New York Times keeps a running tab on Trump’s encyclopedia of slurs.)

Derision, racism, default and brutality are strange ways to go about making America great again. But there’s nothing strange about the shock troops that powered Trump’s grab. Vote for a slumlord. Get a slumlord.

A few months ago we could chalk up Trump’s ravings to theatrics necessary to keep his reality show on the air a little longer. But he was blessed–and we were cursed–with 16 Republican contenders not much saner than he’s been. Now he’s the Republican nominee (“presumptive” is an affectation at this point), and although his chances of winning in November are about as good as Goldwater’s in 1964 or Mondale’s in 1984, crazier things have happened in this country. Like Donald Trump winning the Republican nomination. It’s embarrassing enough that his chances of winning are not zero. We’ve had a few decades to get used to the fact that America is no longer seen as exemplary by most of the world. There’s no preparation for a Trump presidency. He’s certainly made that clear.

Hyperbole distorts every election, just as candidates invariably describe every election as the most crucial in our lifetimes. There’s been no such “crucial” election since 1964. I remember thinking the world would end when Ronald Reagan was elected in 1980. Millions of us actually thought he’d be too liberal with the nuclear button. CBS News broadcast a five-part series in prime time on five consecutive nights about his military buildup and millions protested around the world over fears that Reagan would make good on his quip to start the bombing in five minutes.

The world didn’t end. It just changed orbit. Reagan, who at least played a governor in his previous role, returned America to the more Darwinian ellipse around mammon it had last known during the Harding-Coolidge-Hoover directorate. Reagan limited his bombing runs to what was left of the New Deal and a progressive tax structure, setting us up for the 1920s-like inequality we know today. But he turned out to be a nuclear softie almost willing to abolish all weapons and make love, not war, with his great pal Gorbachev. If he was senile by then, at least he was never demented.

Watching Trump, I’m not so sure. If he isn’t demented, his policies are. And so far 10 million people consider those policies reasonable enough to give him the power to go further. Ten million people in a nation of 240 million adults isn’t that much. Trump will need six or seven times that to beat Clinton. This is the time when Republicans must make a choice between the values they pretend to espouse and the barbarian they think is their prince.

It’s been funny in a Boris Karloff sort of way to watch all these Republicans run the numbers on their devil’s calculator: do I? Do I not? It brings out the best and worst in, if not of, them. The craven will follow, but prominent Republicans are abandoning him as no major party leaders have ever abandoned their nominee before: Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney, possibly now John McCain, the entire House of Bush (not to mention its first cousin, the House of Saud): they’ve all bailed. Of course they have. They don’t want to be on the slime side of history.

That still leaves the hairy hardcore, the Ron Jeremys of the GOP. The choice is theirs. The judgment isn’t.

Primaries are a freak show but it’s time to stop pretending. There is no room, not even in media–especially not in media–to put Trump on the same plane as Clinton for any sort of “balance” or equivalence that doesn’t exist. Clinton has her issues, as would any reasonable candidate. But Trump is a candidate in neon only. Beyond that he’s a racist, a misogynist, an unabashed authoritarian, he mostly doesn’t have a clue about foreign affairs, he appears to know less about domestic ones, his own excepted, and among those who’ve made it that far he is by far the least-prepared candidate for the presidency in 227 years. (Go ahead: throw out a few names and see if they stick.)

And yes: voting for him makes you a racist, because racism isn’t incidental to Trump’s campaign. It’s central to his appeal. It’s what got him this far.

That’s a strong charge, so I’ll explain. It’s one thing if you voted for George W. Bush in 2000 because, as was central to his campaign at the time, he wanted to cut taxes. Being a fiscal conservative is not a value judgment. It’s a philosophy. It may make you right or wrong, depending on how the tax-cutting is implemented, but it doesn’t make you good or evil, moral or immoral, civilized or barbaric. (Bush’s math, as it turned out, was more Liberace than Leibnitz). So we can have legitimate and interesting disagreements about supporting or not supporting Bush’s tax policy, but those disagreements shouldn’t put in question our mutual beliefs in the values we share, or put Bush’s value system in question.

The same calculus doesn’t work with Trump. He too intends to cut taxes, though his plan is neither less nutty as that of his ex-Republican rivals nor is it anything his followers are much interested in, or comprehend. His economic policy is peripheral to what justifies him as a candidate. Trump led the field from day one because he called Mexicans rapists in his opening salvo, led it bigger when he compared all Muslims to potential terrorists (hence the ban on their entry to the United States), and led it bigger still when he proclaimed his willingness to bomb the families of “terrorists” if necessary. Those were the towering infernals of the Trump campaign, the sort of make-or-break positions that make other policy positions minor in comparison. And that’s without getting into his Neanderthal snarls about women. (Apologies to my Neanderthal friends and relatives.)

Trump isn’t all paleolithic. Some of his positions are oddly reasonable for a bully. I happen to think that Trump was the only Republican candidate with the most pragmatic approach to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, a pretty damn important part of how I judge candidates. Trump alone thinks that Israel and Palestine should be negotiated with evenly, without giving favor to Israel (as has been the approach since Clinton’s pal Henry Kissinger, as criminal a secretary of state as we’ve had, made it so three decades ago). But that big plus is not nearly enough to overcome his racism, even with Hillary Clinton intending to treat Israel with more deference than West Virginia. Trump’s position regarding Palestinian-Israeli negotiations puts him in line with how the rest of the civilized world thinks negotiations between two belligerents should be handled, so it’s refreshing (for an American) but not unusual. And it’s not an essential part of his platform. Trump’s racism, on the other hand, defines him.

The undeniable fact is that Trump is not just a bigot, but a bigot without whose bigotry his appeal would be somewhere between Rick Perry and Ted Cruz territory–attractive to the odd weed tumbling across the nation’s ideological ghettos and Sean Hannity’s girl-cave but not to the sort of electoral dweeb that still believes in e pluribus unum. Trump’s racism, in sum, is why most people whether they admit it or not are supporting him: some of racists’ best friends are their own delusions. They can’t claim, like that latest of a string of morons thinking their fellow-passengers terrorists, not to have really known what Trump is about. Even accepting that ignorance is a defence, the defense doesn’t hold up in Trump’s case. The sleeve he wears is a brown shirt. The words he speaks are clothed in brown shirts. The fans he encourages to beat up dissenters at his rallies are brown shirts. If Melania Trump were to wear a burka, it’d be a brown shirt.

Sure he says it like it is, if you think “it” has any validity. But so does David Duke. So did George  Wallace. So do half the demented armchair typists in FlaglerLive’s comment section. So do I, for that matter. It doesn’t make us qualified to be president of the United States.

So Trump may very well have made this the most consequential election in our lifetime, assuming he wins. If he doesn’t, Republicans should be joyful all the same. With Hillary Clinton as the other nominee, there are no Democrats left to speak of. It’s a one-party election, if you still care to call Trump a Republican. Let’s hope for your party’s sake and ours that you have the decency not to.

Pierre Tristam is FlaglerLive’s editor. Reach him by email here or follow him @PierreTristam. A version of this piece aired on WNZF.

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81 Responses for “The Republican Responsibility to Reject Trump”

  1. Hillary should be in jail

  2. Tina says:


  3. Mark says:

    Tell the coal miners there isn’t a crisis.

  4. Mark says:

    $19 trillion in debt isn’t a crisis?

  5. Mark says:

    Mexicans and muslims aren’t a race for your edification. Can I use your daughter’s locker room?

  6. r&r says:

    Trump is the only canidate who says what other people want to but don’t have the nerve. He’s the number one choice, in fact the only choice.

  7. Fredrick says:

    Here is were you lost me Pierre… “would forcibly expel 11 million undocumented immigrants”. When you start calling them what they are, “ILLEGAL immigrants”. I welcome anyone who wants to come here legally just like my family did and hopefully yours Mr. Tristam. They can get in line like everyone else who wants to do it the legal way.

    There is so much crap in this article that I just don’t know where to begin.

    Obamacare was built on lies, it’s not saving the middle class any money it is costing them tons more. The other soundbite lies about it are well kniwn.

    If this is true “And yes: voting for him makes you a racist”……. Then voting for Hillary makes you an enabler of Rape, accountable for the deaths in Benghazi, you approve of taking bribes / kickbacks from big corporations…..(this list is endless).

    By the way I am not a trump fan…. but I am a for Anyone but Hillary and I am for shaking up the establishment of the GOP and creating a party that works for the people they put in office. Along with that if the Donald dismantles part of the fiasco of the last 8 years that’s a plus.

    • Pierre Tristam says:

      Fredrick, much as I hate to correct your English–I am an immigrant, after all–there is no such thing as an “illegal immigrant,” at least not in the sort of proper English, say, our slave-owning founding fathers might have spoken.

  8. footballen says:

    Wow I guess I’m surprised that I’m surprised.

  9. Bc. says:

    Keep on bashing trump all the way into the White House. By the way this article is garbage. It’s To be expected from him.

  10. Winny says:


    I will be voting for Trump. But, that does not make me a raciest. You certainly have a strange and off-the-wall way of defining things you are scared of. How about you try to turn more people away from reading your columns by posting opinionated accusations based on nothing more than your own misguided perceptions.


  11. Veteran says:

    You are judging Trump by how he has conducted his campaign. He ingeniously did it to motivate all those he knew were tired of the same old bullshit in Washington. If and when he gets elected you will see a totally different person. The person you are describing could not have built the successful company that he has. He made his children attend the Wharton School of Business. They had to earn the right to work in his company. That’s the kind of person I want leading the country. And how can you believe Obama has done a good job? His major accomplishment, The Affordable Care Act, not only is not affordable, but a complete disaster. The relatively few that have gotten health care has been overshadowed by the many whose costs have gone up astronomically.

  12. I would love to see an article detailing all the reasons Hilary Clinton is corrupt and being investigated by the FBI.

  13. Knightwatch says:

    For you Drumpfers, voting for this despicable man in fact does make YOU racist, misogynistic, xenophobic and bigoted. YOU are what you stand up and cheer for. YOU are what you vote for. If you believe Drumpf “speaks his mind” and “says what people are thinking”, then his drivel is YOUR drivel. His disgusting insults, his vitriol, his belligerence, his bullying and his profound ignorance of domestic and world affairs is YOURS. He merely has the crass insensitivity to any civilized norms of behavior to say it out loud for YOU. His foul mouth is moving, but YOU are speaking.

    You need to think about this. You need to seriously ask yourselves if insulting and discriminating against whole classes of people is really you. You need to think about his threats to ban, to spy on, to harass, to torture and kill is what you really want. If you decide he’s your man, then YOU are the problem.

  14. YankeeExPat says:

    I am a Merican White Guy and I admit I have a Problem with People of Color…….. Orange Folk that is

  15. anonymous says:

    go trump. The only president ever to tell the truth, and only the truth. he says whats on his mind and doesn’t give a crap what the liberals…i mean cry babies think of it. Has anybody considered all the shit Hillary has done. Obviously not

  16. Ed Bondy says:

    Who do you recommend? Bernie has never had a job? Hillary who has $200,000,000 that she accumulated as a PUBLIC SERVANT ? Cruz and Rubio as the saying goes can’t be trusted as far as you could through. Politicians have been stealing from us for years and they make laws that enrich them,not us. No social security,Medicare,Obamacare,etc. At least no one owns Trump!

  17. Nancy N. says:

    Veteran – so, you claim, beneath that racist, misogynistic, bigoted act, you claim there is just a loveable teddy bear waiting to come out when he’s elected? Sorry, not buying it. No self-respecting person who actually does not believe those things could casually spout them day in and day out without throwing up. Seriously…every non-bigoted human being that I know wants to puke just LISTENING to them.

    To me your explanation reeks of mental gymnastics so you can vote for the bigot while convincing yourself that you aren’t following your baser instincts. “He’s not really a bigot…”

    Same goes for Winny. You say voting for Trump doesn’t make you a racist. Well, I can say I’m not a bad singer but saying it doesn’t make it so. Actions speak louder than words.

    R&R – and why do you think most people “don’t have the nerve” to say the things Trump says? Maybe because they know deep down inside that those thoughts are bigoted and offensive, and therefore they are not socially acceptable by decent people? Most Americans these days are incredibly brazen about saying what they think. If people aren’t comfortable saying these things, perhaps some reflection should be given to why they feel the need to say something that they know is so offensive they are scared to say it. There are some things that a person SHOULD be uncomfortable saying. It’s called social restraint. It’s why you don’t blurt out at a wedding that the bride looks awful, or tell a new mom her baby is ugly.

    Knightwatch is exactly right…if you are expressing support for a candidate because he’s “telling it like it is” then you cannot distance yourself from the story that he is telling! He is YOUR voice – that is what representative government is all about. If you don’t actually like what he is saying, then you need to vote for someone else. Voting for him is a clear endorsement that is what you want him to be saying on your behalf. That’s how representative democracy works!

  18. Joe says:

    Unemployment is down but welfare has record breaking numbers, no crisis?

    • Pierre Tristam says:

      Joe, what welfare are you referring to? The mortgage interest tax deduction that subsidizes your house and costs us $75 billion a year? The tax subsidy for your employer-provided health insurance that costs us $250 billion a year–$100 billion more than those Obamacare subsidies to poor scum? The preferential lower tax levied on capital gains and dividends that overwhelmingly benefits the rich and robs the public treasury of about $120 billion a year? The state and local taxes you can deduct off your federal taxes? The child tax credit that costs us about $50 billion a year? I thought do. You’re absolutely correct. Welfare is out of control. Glad you mentioned it.

  19. NortonSmitty says:

    Yea! And the people who make Rabbit Ear Antennae!

  20. Martin says:

    You can bet I will be voting for Trump! And I think this article is BS

  21. Pat O says:

    The Republican party has the responsibility and duty to nominate and support the candidate who party members choose. Not the candidate of party bosses, or self appointed internet commentators, or the moneyed elite. Party members have spoken. Trump is the candidate. If you don’t like Trump. don’t vote for him, but stop spouting stupidity.

    • Pierre Tristam says:

      Pat, no one is arguing the right of the party to choose its nominee. But last I check we still have somewhat free elections, even those involving Republicans, who don’t have a duty to vote as the party tells them to, at least not republicans outside North Korea. The question is whether Republicans will elect to vote for racism or not.

  22. Steve Robinson says:

    Amen, Pierre. Let’s dispense with the old Burke saw about evil triumphing when good men do nothing, and state simply that evil will triumph in November if good people don’t get out and vote. The saddest part of the Trump fiasco, beyond what it says about the hearts and minds of many who consider themselves patriotic Americans, is that the very people who comprise Trump’s base are the very same people who ultimately stand to lose the most should the unthinkable happen and Trump get elected. The only thing Donald Trump has ever done, or will ever do, for working-class and middle-class folks is feed them a free buffet on their way back to the buses after he picked their pockets at his casinos. Oh yes, he’s given them something else: Permission to openly and shamefully scapegoat Muslims and Mexicans for their own failures and frustrations.
    And an aside to Veteran: If you think Trump’s act is just that, an act, you have not paid much attention to him over the years. Trump has a long and well-documented history as a liar and a con-man who has inflated his own accomplishments and cast blame everywhere for his own myriad failings. He is a classic narcissist who listens to no one, and surrounds himself–“my people”–with sycophants and suck-ups. That he has appeared to have added racist and xenophobe to his sorry resume rather late in life is only because, as a businessman, he knew his hate speech would not fly on his home turf, New York City, but it’s red meat for a large portion of the national Republican electorate. But don’t take my word for it. Start Googling and start educating yourself about this man. I’ll give you a head start with this article from 1997:

    • Pierre Tristam says:

      Thank you Steve (as I write this as we drive through your old digs, Atlanta). Cheryl’s been at the wheel, we’re making our way back from a summersault with rooks knights and bishops at the K-6 nationals in Nashville so this being Sunday night it’s given me a rare chance to actually, hmm, how can I say this without sounding like I’m overdosing on oxy, enjoy these comments as Flagler’s own little windows into this very strange era. You keep thinking it’ll pass–the tea party movement that petered out, the birthers, our own Reagan assembly folks, now Trumpism–but I guess as long as we have a Darkie in the White House, or a woman, or anything not white, male and pious as Herod, it’s not going to stop. So we’re in for it for a few more years. Off to 1997.

  23. Ws says:

    Your column is nothing but racism. You have some nerve calling people who want Trump for president a racist. Obama is going down as the worst president ever and I don’t see you writing about him every week. I can’t wait until Trump is president so you can watch him send all the illegal people in this country out of this country! Try to remember what the word illegal means. By reading your column it looks as though you might be confused about that. It means against the law just in case you didn’t know. maybe you could spend a little time writing about how people should NOT be breaking the law by coming into our country illegally. In the meantime keep up your attack on Donald Trump but he will be president whether you approve or not.

  24. Brad West says:


    Is there anything left of the keys on your keyboard? Well said. I agree with not voting for Trump. And a lot of other things you said. Not all, but a lot.

  25. OldSeaDog says:

    Pierre Tristam is FlaglerLive’s editor

    He does not seem to represent the majority views here that it is time for a change to bring this
    once great country back to honesty and common sense in government—-we all know that the PRESS long ago
    stopped being unbiased reporters of news.

  26. Anonymous says:

    What an America hating Liberal Hack writing this horrid article. Isn’t America great where a citizen can embrace failed Socialism and support an administration that is forcing it on our Republic. 93 million out of work, 48 million on food stamps, 50 million on welfare and over 18 trillion in debt caused by Democrats and they walk round clueless. What are you American, in name only, Democrats seeing that the rest of us are missing???????????

    They’re doing this because Obama is black, not because he is a great racist of them. Will help us remember forever, the WORST President of the United States of America. The Democratic National Committee can sure pick them..Peanut Farmer Carter, Womanizer Clinton and America Destroying Muslim Obama and now Socialist Sanders or lawbreaker Hillery waiting in the wings to continue the destruction. When asked about her greatest accomplishment as Secy of State in an interview–
    My accomplishments as Secretary of State? Well, I’m glad you asked! My proudest accomplishment in which I take the most pride, mostly because of the opposition it faced early on, you know the remnants of prior situations and mind sets that were too narrowly focused in a manner whereby they may have overlooked the bigger picture and we didn’t do that and I’m proud of that. Very proud. I would say that’s a major accomplishment!!
    -Hillary Clinton 11 March 2014

  27. Rich Hall says:

    I will reject Hillary with Donald. Thank you. Ps, I’m not a repubican, i’m a American.

  28. IMO says:

    Mr. Tristam…up until the year 1892 this nation had Open Borders. Until 1892 the federal government had absolutely nothing to do with immigration. Up until 1892 the individual States handled immigration. In New York before 1892 the immigrants arrived at the jointly run and funded Castle Gardens Receiving Station.

    In 1892 the Congress sealed the borders of the United States and built federal immigrant receiving stations. In New York that was at Ellis Island. Starting in 1892 a person needed the permission of the United States government to immigrate into and stay in the United States.

    Thus since 1892 it has been the federal government that has been responsible for enforcing ‘Federal Immigration Law.”

    In the last 40 to 50 years the federal government has REFUSED TO ENFORCE FEDERAL IMMIGRATION LAW. It has allowed an estimated 12 to 40 million people to break our laws, cross our borders and illegally stay in this nation.

    Today that government not only refuses to enforce the law it blatantly assists people to break this nation’s laws and cross our borders illegally. It has been come the accomplice to the crimes.

    When a government refuses to enforce the law that government itself becomes a failed and illegal government.

  29. IMO says:

    Mr. Tristin…it was my understanding you were educated in New York City. That you attended the U.N. School.

    To live in and be educated in New York City and be totally clueless as to the history of immigration, Ellis Island and Congress “SEALING” this nation’s borders in 1892 tells me you had terrible Teachers.

  30. IMO says:

    “Fredrick, much as I hate to correct your English–I am an immigrant, after all–there is no such thing as an “illegal immigrant,” at least not in the sort of proper English, say, our slave-owning founding fathers might have spoken.”

    There were five “Founding Fathers” who were assigned to write the Declaration of Independence. It was called “The Commitee of Five.”

    Four came from northeastern States. John Adams of Massachusetts, Benjamin Franklin of Pennsylvania, Robert R. Livingston of New York, and Roger Sherman of Connecticut The fifth member was Thomas Jefferson who was from Virginia.

    John Admas and Roger Sherman did not own slaves. The other 3 men did.

    In his original Draft of the Declaration of Independence Thomas Jefferson condemned King George III for Slavery and the Slave Trade. He attempted to Emancipate the Slaves living in the 13 Colonies. Thomans Jefferson wrote:

    “…he (KING GEORGE III) has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating it’s most sacred rights of life & liberty in the persons of a distant people who never offended him, captivating & carrying them into slavery in another hemisphere, or to incur miserable death in their transportation thither. this piratical warfare, the opprobrium of infidel powers, is the warfare of the CHRISTIAN king of Great Britain. determined to keep open a market where MEN should be bought & sold, he has prostituted his negative for suppressing every legislative attempt to prohibit or to restrain this execrable commerce: and that this assemblage of horrors might want no fact of distinguished die, he is now exciting those very people to rise in arms among us, and to purchase that liberty of which he has deprived them, & murdering the people upon whom he also obtruded them; thus paying off former crimes committed against the liberties of one people, with crimes which he urges them to commit against the lives of another….”

    When Adams, Franklin, Livingston and Sherman saw what the young Thomas Jefferson had written they demanded, o they ORDERED him to remove that paragraph.

    So there was one Enlightened Man who wanted to emancipate the slaves on the Committee of Five. That was Thomas Jefferson. Now if we read it his words “…he (KING GEORGE III) has waged cruel war against human nature itself,…” was Jefferson not saying that the slave trade that was operated by the Dutch, British, Portuguese and Spain not a “Crime Against Humanity?”

    Thomas Jefferson did not give up the fight. At the Constitutional Convention he fought for a “Ban on the further importation of slaves into the United States effective 1808.” He won that fight. In 1808 he was President and he enforced the ban. Jefferson thought banning the further importation of new slaves that slavery would die out. Of course he was wrong. He never anticipated the “Breeding of Slaves from Within.” But of course that is an entirely different subject matter of a much more grievous nature as to slavery in the United States.

    However I/M/O Thomas Jefferson was the most ardent supporter of abolishing slavery this nation ever had.

  31. Jim says:

    to Nancy, Knightwatch, and Steve…and Pierre but why waste my time…

    you are ALL CRIMINALS in that you are aiding and abetting another criminal by supporting her. She is a MURDERER and should be in prison for ALL of the crimes that she, her husband and their cronies have committed….. THIS COUNTRY IS GOING TO HELL IN A HAND BASKET!!!!

  32. Sherry says:

    @ oldseadog. . . WOW! It appears that by counting the number of comments from racists Trump Supporters here you have reinforced your delusions that Pierre Tristam does not represent the majority of citizens in our country. Completely unbiased journalism perhaps never existed. If it did, it died many years ago with the advent of FOX type talking heads. . . with almost zero fact checking. Pierre Tristam (owner and editor of this wonderful new site) has a much broader life perspective and speaks with a refreshing voice of experience and education far beyond many who live in this Southernized region of Florida.

    Before anyone starts with the “if you don’t like it, leave” comments, my family ILLEGALLY immigrated here in the 1600’s. . . as did ALL the original founders of the USA! Never forget. . . We all live in a nation of immigrants! That FREEDOM of diversity and religion is precisely what makes the USA GREAT. . . RIGHT NOW. . . and UNIQUE in the world!

    Knightwatch and Steve Robinson you both have it completely right! Trump is a highly dangerous racist, xenophobic, narcissistic megalomaniac who believes women are possessions. Anyone who uses their actual intellect and does any research into the FACTS of his resume of business dealings and life will find very unethical (bordering on criminal) failures and bankruptcies where he has been responsible for completely CHEATING those who believed in him the most.

    To imagine that, after over 30 years of such despicable behavior, he will somehow morph into an upstanding, honorable, honest leader is an exercise in either remarkable stupidity, or insanity. . . or both!

    To those who support such an obvious racist/white supremacist, misogynistic xenophobe. . . to think that somehow your support of Trump does not define YOU similarly is nothing short of absurd/demented! Let’s make this quite simple. . . if you lie down with dogs, you absolutely will get fleas!

  33. Ray says:

    You non Trump supporters disgust me. Maybe if you watched or attended a rally you would have an understanding of how great for America, Trump really is

  34. Brad W says:

    As a registered Republican, I will not be voting for Donald Trump if he is the nominee. It’s for a lot of reasons, but not because I think I would be a racist if I did. I agree with a lot in this article, but not that anyone who votes for Trump is a racist. That’s pretty absurd. I do agree with the “brown shirts” comparisons. There are eerie similarities of this type of so-called conservative movement and the one that occurred in the mid 20’s through the early 30’s in Germany.

    What is very interesting about Trump’s rise is that it breaks all of the traditional conventions of past candidates. He’s the culmination of all of the craziness the Republican Party has encouraged and promoted over the past 8 years starting with the Tea Party nonsense. Somehow they are now suddenly surprised when “that sh*& got real” and you can watch any news show and see the Party splitting before our very eyes which will almost guarantee a win for Hillary. The real question is whether the Republican Party will be able to come back from this and the sides reconcile or is this the literal end of a Republican Party?

  35. confidential says:

    Thank you so much Pierre for your realistic editorial regarding Trump. The man is the result of the Tea Party revolution to all common sense in the current disbanded GOP. I have to confess that in the very beginning as a registered Republican that I still am, I liked the man and his idea of “bringing our jobs back from China” which should be the #1 item on any candidate agenda…but then he started his virulent racist attacks and extreme feverish plans agenda that will end up costlier to us than any jobs back from China while generating Armageddon for many hard working/law abiding whether legal or illegal immigrant families and enhanced by potential threat of Trump starting another war that could be nuclear this time. Massive deportations in a country of immigrants were the only ones with duly right to our land are our destitute Native Americans Tribes!! Who give Trump the right? Trump is an immigrant too as for sure we had no yellow mane, blue eyes roaming our plains in wild pinto ponies in the sixteen hundreds and until 1848 one third of our USA of today was Mexico’s territories from were now Trump wants to deport 11 million people that have more historical rights to be here than himself !!
    We are really so glad he speaks his mind so we know very well why this family is not voting for him and not because we are Hillary’s fans actually to the contrary, but as Bernie seems to loose his race we have no other choice! Hopefully the DEM ticket will be Hillary-Bernie, to preserve at least the good things done by Obama like really catching more Osama’s style terrorist and providing health care for all. Lets do not regress what was done righ in these past eight yearst! Until the GOP gets back to its real roots many registered Reps have no other choice than vote DEM. The Almighty protects us all from candidates like Trump in our home sweet home!

  36. Marlee says:

    Does anyone get the feeling that the two-party system has become a Religious-like faith, embraced without questions or doubt?

    Leaders and members are expected to accept and support the candidate chosen for the Party-like Religion.

    Their first priority is to follow the Party-like Religion in lockstep without any regard whatsoever to the overall good and future of their country.

  37. Knightwatch says:

    Brad W,

    Finally… a principled, thoughtful Republican who sees through the far-right rhetoric and rejects it. We need a two (or three?)-party system, and a competitive election. It’s good for our form of democracy. But all partisan parties, and independents as well, need to think and reason clearly when exposed to political demagogues and then reject them for the good of the country.

  38. Sherry says:

    @Ray. . . I certainly have listened in horror, along with the rest of the “civilized” world, to Trump’s passionate words of racism, xenophobia, chauvinism, fear and hatred towards women and billions of non-white, non-christian citizens of this planet.

    I’ve also done extensive research on his business dealings with the mob, while he still defends his right to employee the illegal immigrants he wants to deport. . . and has no conscience what so ever when it comes to those he completely cheated at “Trump University”, during his 4 bankruptcies, and in numerous real-estate schemes.

    Anyone who chooses to support such a despicable human being is, in my opinion, being massively manipulated into throwing out all evidence to the contrary and supporting Trump out of their own similar horrific character traits and biases.

  39. Geezer says:

    When I read the headline to this article and said to myself: “hmmm, this is going to bring out the best
    in readers with opposing viewpoints.” Alas, I’m not disappointed! The naysayers get their point across
    in an articulate and eloquent manner. Donald Trump: the silver-tongued orator and would-be president,
    certainly appeals to the classiest of all of us.

    You’re just jealous because Hillary isn’t orange. Jealousy is so 1980’s, like the Ronald Ray-Gun.
    Cut it out Mr. Tristin.

  40. BeachcomberT says:

    Pierre, you’re tarring with a broad brush today. Implying that everyone who supports Trump is a racist, either openly or secretly, ignores all the other ingredients boiling in this year’s electoral stew — dissatisfaction with wage stagnation, fear of terrorists (stoked by both Bush and Obama), the millions displaced by foreclosures, dislike of having our stores stocked 90 percent with Chinese goods, anger that American soldiers are still being killed in other nations’ civil wars, rising medical bills that skimpy Obamacare policies don’t cover, NSA’s massive invasion of our privacy (kept secret until Snowden came along), Obama’s refusal to jail Wall Street con artists, the Fed policy of giving ordinary savers almost zero interest on their accounts, pension plans being abandoned, outsourcing run amok, etc etc. Saying that everyone who is angry enough to vote for Trump must be a racist is about the same as saying everyone who is angry enough to vote for Sanders is a Communist. I do agree there is enough racist content in Trump’s speeches and Tweets to make him an unattractive choice for president, but I don’t think we have to elect Hillary by default. We can choose third party candidates, a yet-to-emerge maverick Republican independent, or simply leave the top line of the ballot blank so that Hillary is elected by a tiny plurality, rather than a landslide. Some may choose to go out on a limb, hold their nose and vote for Trump, betting the world still will not come to an end next January. If his alleged Hitler tendency gets worse, then the Congress can vote to impeach him. Or the 25th Amendment can be invoked to remove him on psychiatric grounds.

  41. PCer says:

    Trump is a conman. One of the best conmen to ever live. Those who support him have bought into his lies and the con. I feel sorry for you. You are stupid. No other way to put it. Hillary may not be perfect, but at least you know what you are getting. No telling what Trump will do with that kind of power.

  42. Ron says:

    Another negative piece on Trump. What a surprise. This paper is a rag along with it’s editor.

  43. The Oracle says:

    Don’t worry, it is okay to enforce our laws and make America great again. Hillary has done great harm to females and minority’s. She has taken millions of dollars from countries that repress woman’s rights, and has keep minority’s “in their place” with government handouts. It time to stop the Obama/Clinton train wreck. 20 trillion dollars is a huge debt for our future generations to pay.

  44. Vincent A. Liguori says:

    As an American, I am capable of making a decision on my own, I do not need the opinions of pundits and the media. Question: What happened to the Republican responsibility to reject Obama’s horrendous policies?

  45. WoodyChucker says:

    The entire “Trump Train” and “Take America Back” campaigns disgust me. They are the old all white boy’s club that have seen more diversity in our nation than ever before and take issues with it.

    Just because a candidate is not a “normal” politician and people want change doesn’t mean we should elect someone on that alone. Different does not always mean better. Trump different would be a disaster. If you applaud him for speaking his mind that means that you are a part of the problem because you agree with the crap he says. It’s more like he’s speaking your mind.

    Fear, hate, racism, sexism, this is not what i think the leader of a nation should revolve around. He’s popular now because he’s campaigning to his Republican base that is also racist and sexist at it’s core. I believe Trump with crash and burn in the general election because while his supporters are the loudest i have a hard time they represent a majority of America.

    What scares me more than Trump are the people that actually want a person like that leading them. Any single moron can say crazy things. The ones that hear this and say “Right on, that’s who I want to look up to and follow” are the truly scary people.

  46. William Moya says:

    What?! New York City, is that still part of America? And then the UN school, where they speak foreign tongues and read books?! What’s wrong with Palatka U., where they speak american, cherish our heritage by flying the confederate flag, and playing with snakes on Sundays to honor our white Lord. One more thing, don’t refer to me as a “demented armchair typist”, I’d let you know I am a demented armchair polemicist. Good piece, keep up the good work.

  47. Sherry says:

    AGAIN. . . I ask anyone who will answer. . . please define “in detail” the Great America that has gone missing.
    What exactly does “Make America Great Again” mean? What era precisely would you turn our country back to? Is there not a “forward looking” conservative out there? Should we, for example, bring back. . . what?:

    . The Stronger KKK?
    . Slavery?
    . The Vietnam War?
    . Watergate?
    . The Bay of Pigs?
    . The Cold War?
    . World Wars One and Two?
    . Resend a Women’s Right to Vote?
    . Lines at the Gas Pump?
    . Double Digit Inflation?
    . Stop a woman’s rights over her own body?
    . The Depression. . . complete with bread lines?

    Just EXACTLY what does “Making America Great AGAIN” mean? Trump hasn’t been able to tell us. Who can explicitly define what in the hell that means? Or, could it possibly be just a manipulating LINE that has you hooked into the Trump Cult . . . just like a big bunch of fools!

  48. Fredrick says:

    Pierre in response to your reply to my post. I know that you are an immigrant and I believe you come here legally. At least I hope so. Maybe you do not know what one is but yes there are illegal immigrants. Being “undocumented” means you are not here legally. Which makes you here illegally. An immigrant is any person who has come to live here permanently. Just liek your family and mine. Whether they came through a port in a legal manner or swam across a river or who came on a legal visa and just forgot to leave, they are an immigrant. Is it really that difficult to understand? Why do you need to play word games? What are you afraid of? This is the type of BS that makes a moron like Trump popular. Keep fueling the fire….. this only gets him more supporters.

  49. Wishful Thinking says:

    How enlightening to read everyone’s feelings… God Bless the First Amendment and thank you Pierre for respecting it. To those blasting the editor because you don’t agree with his political views ( I don’t either) I hope we can all agree that the media can easily trash everything from print that they don’t agree with – Be that as it may Pierre does a better job than the News Journal … and Flagler County in most instances of bringing all of us readers speedy, thoroughly detailed, un-tainted ,up to date news. Now comes where I disagree but am going to try to not be disagreeable…
    ** As several readers clarified there is no such entity as ‘ Illegal Immigrant’.. One is an immigrant to this county when the follows the laws of the land to become an ‘immigrant’… this status which is based on many variables once attained further allows all immigrants to apply for the coveted most democratic citizenship in the free world – to become a U.S. Citizen… If you came here illegally – you are a ‘criminal’ not an immigrant’………My ancestors and my husband are all immigrants and all became U.S. citizens per the legal requirements. My hubby registered to vote an hour after obtaining his US Citizenship and applied for his US Passport the same day. He raised an American Flag in our front yard the day we closed on our home. He helped prepare shuttle Endeavour for it’s final flight at Kennedy Space Center. To compare him with people who have no regard for our laws is an insult to all immigrants in this country.
    Secondly, Donald Trump is the presumptive Republican nominee chosen by legal VOTERS under a system which is ” Of the people, by the people and for the people” not of the political Party, by the political Party ,nor FOR the party”…. WE the people not THEM ! Hillary was my choice 2008 – I donated to her campaign because I felt she had integrity, experience, and really cared. She lost my respect when 4 Americans lost their lives in Libya… which she should have prevented. She went downhill for me right then an there.
    I am going to vote for Donald Trump not because I agree with a lot of venting he does because in the real world he will have to compromise and vent in the right direction but he does not need anyone’s approval nor money. I am sorry he gives the opinion that he hates all Muslims – he is frustrated like most of us are at the horrors and evilness that exist today which unfortunately – in our current world -have been instigated by a small group and groups of mostly ( misguided) Muslims. To deny any person status in the county if they have applied according to law – will never be tolerated. I rather someone who talks garbage but who doesn’t have to kiss anyone’s behind be my President rather than a money hungry two faced bitch like Hillary. I hope Trump runs as an independent and that both the Republican Party and the Democratic Party both go to hell as they are all paid off whores in my opinion. But please go easy on Pierre – he has a right to express his feelings just like the rest of us

  50. Mark says:

    White, people looking for work unemployment may be down but, people not looking for work and black unemployment are not down. Spin it how you want to. Are wages up? Is the cost of living Down? No we are not in a crisis, just $19 trillion in debt and growing. We are not at war either, there are no boots on the ground in the middle east a-la Vietnam, so we are not in crisis. We have been saved by Obama and Hillary will fix everything Obama has failed to fix with the same policies. Insanity.

  51. Instigator says:

    It’s amazing what you notice when you move here from another state. I now know people that will vote for a serial liar or a Socialist for the highest Office in the Land.

    Trump will win the general election in the widest margin in US History.

  52. Kendall says:

    Well it seems that many of the commenters here have proven Pierre right.

  53. Common Sense says:

    Thank you Pierre for once again telling the truth.

    I am amazed by those who continue to claim the Obama Administration has neen so bad for the country. The facts are that unemployment is down, housing starts are up, millions of Americans who could not have health insurance, before the AHCA, are now covered, we have reestablished relations with Cuba, signed a climate teaty with China and a nuclear treaty with Iran; and all of it in the face of fierce Republican opposition.

    Trump has managed to expose the underbelly of the Republican party. He has insulted and offended gays, blacks, women, veterans, Latinos, the Pope and most recently evangelicals. His behaviour towards Heide Cruz was despicable. His “plans for immigration and taxes have been exposed for the ridiculous shams that they are. He wants to do away with AHCA but doesn’t have anything to replace it.

    He has blatantly lied about his academic record and used a bogus excuse to avoid serving in the military while continuing to play golf, in spite of his “crippling” heel spur. His wife, the putative first lady has posed nude for a men’s magazine. He has a long list of failed businesses, Trump Airlines, Trump Vodka, Trump Water , etc. He has been responsible for four business bankruptcies but still bills himself as a great businessman.

    Ont the other hand Mrs. Clinto has not been indicted or convicted of anything, is spite of eight Congressional investigations, more than were done for 9/11. I often ask those who say she lied, what exactly is she suppossed to have lied about. In 90% of the cases they can’t answer and those that say Benghazi refuse to acknowledge that whatever her remarks, they were said after the tragedy and could not in anyway affect its terrible outcome.

    The same Republicans who criticized President Obama for his lack of foreign policy experience are now perfectly willing to elect someone with dubious business experience and no government experience at all.

    I admit that I am personally offended when Trump talks about making America great again. For me a loyal, tax paying, law abiding citizen, it has never been anything but great. And as for taking it back, who does he want to take it from? Other Americans like me?

    Can any of you supporting Trump really say thay he is the best choice for out country?

  54. WoodyChucker says:

    Sherry…..Great points. I always ask what that means as well. Several years ago i asked a neighbor about the meaning of their Take America Back sticker. I asked take back from who and when did America get hijacked? They said take back from Obama. I wonder how they feel 7 years later now that America hasn’t gone Muslim and is still in existence. I ended the conversation when i asked them the difference between Bush and Obama and they said “not much”. People don’t develop their own opinions, they are mostly motivated by what others say and by race, gender and fear.

  55. confidential says:

    Trump better watch what he is wishing for when it comes to the Wall:

  56. Markingthedays says:

    Best take away from these comments is “You are what you stand up and cheer for.”

  57. Donald Trump's Tiny Fingers says:

    I personally think that Donald Trump is the best thing ever to happen to the american electoral process. It’s not because I support him and his policies (I don’t) and it’s not because I think he’s a decent human being (He’s not). He’s a presidential-level kim kardashian or paris hilton, and he knows that media sources that care more about ratings than journalism (see: FOX, CNN, MSNBC, ABC, CBS, etc) just can’t help but touch the poop when it comes to attracting more viewers. All he needs to do is stand behind a podium and cause a scene by openly saying something that the GOP has been dogwhistling for decades, and suddenly he’s got millions of dollars in free coverage by major “news” outlets, thereby enabling him to reach even more loons because he “says it how it is.”

    His presence and success in politics has been a disruptive nightmare to the GOP and every day that goes by is filled with my visceral laughter at their reaction to the monster that they created and the clowns that they fielded as options to their electorate. I have enjoyed this election season with arguably the same amount of gusto that a victim enjoys seeing their abuser go out in the most ridiculous and embarrassing fashion imaginable, and every day that goes by rewards me with a tweet or a news comment from someone in the GOP that’s in the process of self-destructing over it. The man in second place was a soulless grandpa munster lookalike with the charisma of a wet fart in an elevator that is hated by EVERYONE in the senate. Just think about that. God this election is amazing. Joseph-Marie comte de Maistre was right, every nation really does get the government it deserves.

  58. Sherry says:

    Thanks Common Sense. . . great post!

    What we all need to remember about those brothers and sisters of the human race who often come across borders at great risk to their lives are ENTICED by a multitude of companies who want to “illegally” bypass American workers and pay slave wages. . . just like presidential candidate DONALD TRUMP!

    Why is it that his ardent supporters completely ignore facts of his long history of cheating our citizens? Do you care enough about your sacred vote to read the truth and then decide with your intellect? Take the time to read and really absorb this:

  59. Sherry says:

    Thanks WoodyChucker. . . just trying raise a little consciousness and encourage people to use their intellect to really learn about Trump’s record and stop allowing themselves to be so terribly manipulated by such a despicable person. I most certainly appreciate your comments as well!

  60. Sherry says:

    @wishfulthinking. . . using your logic. . . shouldn’t all those undocumented souls that have been in the USA for years, worked hard, raised families, inked out a decent home and stayed completely out of trouble have a PATH to citizenship or some kind of certification. . . after paying outstanding taxes/a fine and passing other tests for becoming accepted? Do you understand that is not currently possible, and that is what ‘immigration reform” is all about? Shouldn’t they at least be given a CHANCE to become a legal immigrant?

  61. IMO says:

    I/M/O I ever attacked Mr. Tristin but rather educated him since his U.N. School failed to do so.

    What Mr. Trsitin knows about Immigration history and law could fill a thimble.

    The pre 1892 so called “OPen Borders Policy” for this nation was more a loophole that other nations, Germany, Italy and especially England used to dump their riff raff, criminals and starving populations onto other nations. THose nations were Australia, Canada and the United States.

  62. Geezer says:

    Donald Trump’s Tiny Fingers says:

    I never liked elevators, and now I like them even less.

  63. PCer says:

    Hey IMO – are you a Native American? If not, then you are part of or a product of the riff raff, criminals, and starving populations that were dumped in North America by Europe… dating back to the colonial era.

  64. Bc. says:

    Trump will be our next potus the more the press trash him the more he gains support. So keep on trashing him. Pierre keep trashing him you are doing the country a service. But your post suck they make folks want to vote for trump so keep on bashing him. He will be you potus come November

  65. Sherry says:

    Great point PCer!

    I would add to that “murders” of native Americans and slave owners/abusers! Amazing how some idolize the original “explorers” and “colonizers” as if the civilizations they destroyed did not exist at all, and people they conquered and brutalized were lesser humans. Talk about pulling out bit of history to pontificate and reinforce personal bigotry and all the while NOT really knowing/admitting the whole truth about how our nation was really founded. Ludicrous and Very Disturbing!

  66. Lawrence Beighle says:

    Most of us are descendants of legal immigrants. Ask the one’s who came here legally
    What they think of the masses coming here illegally. I have, and they are offended.

  67. Sherry says:

    @Lawrence Beighle. . .please explicitly define “legal” immigrants. Why, why, why would any reasonable, just human being be offended by another human being simply because of their citizenship?

    If, for example, you are referring to Legal Immigration as those with ancestors who came through Ellis Island, just a tiny bit of research will tell you that the vast majority were simply not vetted at all and the only ones turned away from our shores were those who had active, dangerous communicable diseases. The people who had First and Second class tickets were not interviewed or screened at all, and the 3 class passengers often came with no certified papers and were interviewed for only 2 minutes each. 15 Million people immigrated in this way! Only 2% were not allowed entry:

    Just how does that define them and their descendants as morally and ethically superior to those who came here in any other way? “Legal” immigration. . . shouldn’t those up-standing, honest, hard working people who have lived and raised families here for years. . . often enticed here by companies like Donald Trump’s who maximize profits by illegally paying “under the table” slave wages. . . shouldn’t they have a way of earning their own “Legal” status without being mistreated and deported. . . for doing nothing more than also seeking a better life for themselves and their families????????

  68. Anonymous says:

    Lawrence many if not most liberals see this republic and its people as the root of all evils in the world. They see no difference in our forefathers coming here then those who now come here against our laws. If they truly had the conviction of their ideology they would be on a boat back to where they never came from.

  69. Geezer says:

    And now it’s the Democratic Party’s duty to reject Hillary, and choose Bernie Sanders
    as Donald Trump’s opponent. Only Bernie Sanders can win against Trump.
    The only way that Trump would lose to Hillary is to select Rick Scott as his running mate.
    Isn’t Hillary being investigated by the FBI? She was interviewed yesterday. (05/10/16)
    Keeping my fingers crossed for an indictment! Call me an eternal optimist.

    I hope that she cedes to Bernie. I can’t stand the sight of her.
    She is a Big Bank puppet. She’s not too big to fail, though….

  70. Ws says:

    Hey all you Trump haters keep bashing him all the way to the White House😂😂😂😂

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