The Ugly American In 1958 a political novel by Eugene Burdick and William Lederer depicted an American whose egotism, conceit and cool cocky self-assurance hid his colossal cultural and political naïveté causing him to make a lot of sad misjudgments and public comments that reflected badly on all Americans. Today the face of The Ugly American belongs to Donald Trump. No other American is making the United States look like the home of a national horse’s ass better than Republican Presidential Candidate, Donald Trump. Image from GettyImages
The real gun-nut defense: “We don’t want safety.” If you are thinking about listening to the arguments of gun nuts here something to consider. Gun nuts are not really persuaded by data that says guns don’t protect against assault. Data that conflicts with their selfish world is automatically discredited as lies, or just ignored. The fact that FBI data proves guns do not protect is not important to gun nuts. In reality, gun nuts don’t want a safer America. Gun nuts don’t care about restricting guns from terrorists. Gun nuts don’t even give a hoot about insane people. Gun nuts just don’t want to be bothered. The average considerate US citizen would fill out a background form and wait for approval. Gun nuts don’t want to talk about forms or any other damn inconvenience on their God-given right to freedom. Gun nuts don’t care about the Democratic process and they don’t care that most Americans want namby-pamby gun safety. The NRA is an embarrassment to most Americans, if not to humanity, but gun nuts are proud of the NRA. Gun nuts are loud bullies who to get their way are willing to make life more dangerous for everyone else. Gun nuts are rabid, emotional, and irrational fanatics actively overturning laws that prevent gun violence and promote homicide. Guns nuts are all about selfishness, self-righteousness, and ignorance. “Who cares If a few people get hurt,” gun nuts brag. “That’s the price of collateral damage. What’s the big deal. People die every day?”unGuns So face it folks, gun nuts are reveling in the idea that violence is part of the fun if you are the one packing the gun. Richard Dorsey, Hacienda Heights, CA.
Trump’s supporters are proud of their anger: Trump’s followers are not just angry they are proud of their anger. In listening to comments from Trump’s audiences, it appears many of his supporters do not understand what is happening in the world around them. They don’t really get the concept of equal opportunity for all Americans. Unable to appreciate “equal opportunity for all” is a right not a competition; they suffer from a consuming spiritual disease called white pride. Feeling that they have not given their approval to laws that say they must share prosperity with blacks and women and immigrants, white Americans are angry at the idea that they are being taken advantage of. This illness makes them feel miserable and yet they are proud of their misery because all they can see is their own ideas and their own point of view. Trump is exploiting white anger by telling his followers that it is all right to be self-centered, that selfish is good. Trump confirms his follower’s beliefs that they are being taken advantage of by pointing out how often whites are losing the special privileges and are no longer more than equal. Trump declares without an inkling of how, that he will bring back what his supporters have lost, all the while laughing that his personal wealth comes from taking exploiting the hapless. A prime example lies in how Trump tells his audience that workers are getting too much pay, and by inflammatory bluster, causes them to fail to pay attention to the fact that they are the same people he wants to work for him for less pay. Richard Dorsey, Hacienda Heights, CA.
How the Right gets it wrong: Republican leaders fuel the fires of radical conservatives by constantly appealing to the fundamentalist base with the rallying cry, “No Compromise!” Once in office, Republicans face reality; a strong two-party system and public demand for a better America. Unable to live up to campaign rhetoric, Republicans are branded by bullies like O’Reilly and Limbaugh as disappointing cowards. Heedless of the obvious fact that no-compromise works only in one-party systems, failure to hold out is buttressed by self-serving faith that only purer conservatism will prevail. The illogic of this belief is outright dumb; it’s like saying, ‘you can’t lose if you don’t admit giving up.’ The Right continues to get it wrong decade after decade because it favors faith in a lost cause over reality. “No-compromise,” bluntly demands, “Play by our rules only or we will take the ball and go home.” Republican brinksmanship has lead to the lunatics running the asylum. Trump is the party’s new Frankenstein. Most Americans want a better America. Most Americans are not going to allow “No-compromise” government obstructionism. Some dumb cluck yelling, “He lies” at the President only demonstrates the person doing the yelling is stupid, ignorant and gullible. The purpose of government is prosperity for all Americans––not just the selfish––and prosperity for all Americans is the only no-compromise concept of real value. Richard Dorsey, Hacienda Heights, CA.
Armed freeloaders feeding at the public trough: Federal land is the property of the American people. Grazing Federal land is a privilege not a right, certainly not a freedom, and really nothing more than public welfare. Low-fees for grazing on public land are no different than poor people on food stamps. Armed freeloaders are nothing but outlaws feeding at the public trough. Estimates are that American taxpayers pay ten times the extra cost of such rancher subsidies. Armed freeloader protesters want something for nothing. In the process they overgraze, destroy the soil, allow in pests, exterminate wildlife, and cause untold damage due to infestations of foreign plant life. Armed freeloaders want the freedom to turn public parks into housing development, mining, and timber. There are no rights for freeloaders only wrongs. We don’t need the Wild West to live in a sustainable environment. Richard Dorsey, Hacienda Heights, CA.
Equal opportunity––a right, not an option: Compensation for labor has always been competitive for American workers. Skilled, high-wage jobs, however, have always been reserved for white men, while Blacks, Hispanics and Chinese were typically allocated the low paid work of cleaning, cooking and stoop labor. During hard times, whites have desperately tried to maintain their hard won prosperity and privileges regardless of the needs of other American workers. In bad economies, therefore, intolerance of those with whom you compete is often openly expressed in crude language as now in the aftermath of the Great Republican Recession by supporters of Donald Trump and Ted Cruz. Economic dominance by whites does the community no lasting good. Concentration-camp-like social segregation severely restricts opportunity, and when any one group is persecuted trying to get their fair share, everyone suffers. The biggest stumbling block to prosperity for all is the demand for law and order. Law and order is not the same as Justice. Focus on law and order instead of justice is a sop to sooth white feelings that government is imposing change against their will. Real change can only really come if moderate middle class white Americans are will to give up their special privileges and share opportunity; Equal opportunity to a good job, to live in a good neighborhood, with good schools, and with an income sufficient to raise a good family. The Constitution states this country was founded for the purpose of creating equal opportunity for all, yet the history of America is a white man’s story. Segregated from equal opportunity a fair share of prosperity for non-whites is impossible. Equal opportunity is not about equal physical size or bank accounts. Equal opportunity is not restricted by poorer neighborhoods, poorer schools, fewer advantages and greater subjugation; not socially slighted at every turn for the dark color of your skin. Equal opportunity for all must be a grant, an American civil right, not a competitive option you work for. Richard Dorsey, Hacienda Heights, CA.
Hate kills: Whites in America have long held advantages over blacks: Higher earnings, better education, greater access to health care, safer neighborhoods, and freedom from daily insults inflicted on dark skin. Comforted by the narrative that advances in medicine and nutrition whites have guaranteed them a longer life, whites seldom considered that the life expectance gap between white workers and black workers was 5.3 years. Recent statistics, however, show that the life span of the average white worker is dropping and he can now expect to die four years earlier than wealthy whites. Why are white workers dying when medicine is advancing? For decades a strong back and strong union kept income levels high and rising. White workers could feel good about themselves as they enjoyed the financial and social freedom to move through all levels of society. Since the 1980, however, with the income inequality gap dramatically increasing, white income has stagnated. With the rise of black sports and entertainment figures, whites are not the only ones invited into society. Black minstrels are no longer the butt of entertainment, replaced by bigoted middle class whites derided for their uneducated humor. With the loss of good jobs, income and prestige, white workers have begun to feel left behind. Angry whites have displayed their anger by joining the Tea Party. Poorer whites wave confederate flags. Racism, however, is toxic. Downward mobility has created despair and as a result the white worker death rate is rising. Deaths by suicide and gun shots among white workers far surpasses that of black workers. White workers own more guns than black workers and accidental shooting among whites is many times that of blacks. Since many white workers are in construction, doctors have been prescribing opiates to them on a scale they would never allow to blacks. Addiction to medically prescribed drugs among American white workers is the highest in the world. Racial inequality has long been a white privilege. Recent loss of privilege is breeding anger, and hate kills. Striking out at the establishment politics, white workers––like the ones who support Trump and Carson––are really expressing their angst at the loss of white supremacy and having to share prosperity with all Americans. Richard Dorsey, Hacienda Heights, CA.