A ‘Cleansing’ Moment

“The fact is that getting rid of Trump is the easy part. Cleansing the movement he commands, or getting rid of what he represents to so many Americans, is going to be something else.” 

So said Rick Klein and MaryAlice Parks of ABC News. They later changed the wording to “cleaning up,” but the “cleansing” cat was already out of the bag. This calls for more reflection than Klein and Parks were willing to indulge.  

As the late George Carlin observed, America boasts more than 50 brands of breakfast cereal but when it comes to major political parties, the nation is pretty much down to two. That forces some hard choices, as Ted Rall explained in “Hey Lefties, Hillary Clinton is Not Your Friend.”  

In 2016, Marcella Aburdene, then a 31-year-old market researcher with a Palestinian father, told Slate that Clinton “is disingenuous and she lies blatantly,” and would not get her vote. Songwriter Margo Guryan Rosner was irritated by Hillary’s quip about staying home and baking cookies.  

Not all those who rejected Hillary voted for Trump, but here are some Democrats who did: New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, former CIA director James Woolsey, and former Justice Department lawyer Adam Walinsky, who also wrote speeches for Robert F. Kennedy. Trump would not have been elected if many other Democrats had not joined them. 

The Trump movement has a diverse side, so before they call for “cleansing,” Klein and Parks might interview someone like Walinsky, who could explain his decision. Klein and Parks betray no effort to engage any Trump supporter before calling for “cleansing,” a euphemism for deadly violence, as in the Balkans, Rwanda, and other places. 

Since the ABC duo is unwilling to engage in debate and dialogue here’s something they might try. 

Track down a high-profile Trump supporter such as, say, Herschel Walker, join him on a pay-per-view event, and see who does the cleansing. If Herschel can’t make it, countless other Trump supporters would surely be willing to step up. 

While viewers wait for Klein and Parks to show, here’s a writing sample from their cleansing piece: 

It was bad, unspeakably and unfathomably so—utter lawlessness and disorder—carnage in the seat of American government, happening with the seeming encouragement of the outgoing president. Until Wednesday’s siege, when a mob of extremists engaged in an attempted insurrection and violent occupation of the Capitol, there seemed to be little cost to some Republicans in indulging Trump’s conspiracy theories, lies and fantasies.

And so on. It’s going to be a fascinating year. 

 

About Lloyd Billingsley

Lloyd Billingsley is the author of Hollywood Party and other books including Bill of Writes and Barack ‘em Up: A Literary Investigation. His journalism has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Spectator (London) and many other publications. Billingsley serves as a policy fellow with the Independent Institute.

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

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