Unfolding on the television screen Tuesday night—jubilation, repressed for almost a century. A major political party had just nominated a woman as its presidential candidate for the very first time, four years shy of a century since women were granted the right to vote.
Anyone with a sense of watching history in the making, regardless of their belief in Hillary Rodham Clinton, could not help but be moved. More than one lump had difficulty finding its way down my esophagus. I turned to Gilda, sitting beside me. Her face was contorted in tears.
Politics took second place to history, just as it did eight years earlier when Barack Hussein Obama captured the Democratic Party nomination by acclimation, thanks to a magnanimous gesture by his then rival, Hillary. Now it was her primary competitor, Bernie Sanders, who moved that party rules be set aside and all ballots be reflected to show support for Hillary as the party’s nominee.
It was a moment to savor, another milestone on our nation’s sometimes halting march to total equality.
Earlier in the week Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton separately addressed a Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in Charlotte, NC, to different reviews. Trump was reported to have received a warmer reception, but I wonder how anyone who has served in our military could applaud a candidate who insulted a war hero (Senator John McCain) during the primary season by saying he prefers heroes who do not get captured and who has given Russia indications that he would not quickly and decisively respond through NATO to any infringements on the sovereignty of our allies, and that he would consider recognizing Russia’s annexation of the Crimean peninsula inside Ukraine and lifting the sanctions imposed on Russia because of its actions. Plus, Wednesday he invited Russia to hack Clinton’s email server to “find the 30,000 emails that are missing.”
Trump has been savaged by Democrats, naturally, and Republicans for suggesting that a foreign power inject itself into our election process by cyber-attacking an American citizen, presidential candidate and former secretary of state. If Trump doesn’t believe the missing emails were all personal but contained government data, he has effectively asked Russia to seek out and peer into classified U.S. documents.
Some of his backers defend his comment by saying they were made in jest, but as the saying goes, “many a truth was said in jest.” In Trump’s case, many a truth about his true feelings have been said extemporaneously.
Now that he’s the Republican nominee, many of his comments are scripted, vetted by staff so they are politically correct. But when Trump says it’s time to chuck political correctness, his true colors come out. His opinions on immigrants, Muslims, our prisoners of war, our allies, the use of torture, his admiration for dictators, reveal his inner thoughts, ideas that are counter to many of our nation’s cherished ideals.
Trump says we need new plans but he gives few details, arguing he doesn’t want to tip his hand. But why should the public trust Trump when he has filed several bankruptcies that have enriched him while financially hurting creditors, suppliers and their employees? It makes no sense to trust he will do what’s right for America. His history shows he does what’s right for Trump.
Pillow Talk: Let’s talk spouses—It’s no secret that the closest confidantes of presidents have been their spouses, from Abigail Adams to Edith Wilson to Eleanor Roosevelt to Nancy Reagan to Barbara Bush to Hillary Clinton to Laura Bush to Michelle Obama.
The choice of the next first spouse to whom the next president will seek counsel is between a former model-loving mother-businesswoman and a former president of the United States.
Hands down, I know which person the country needs at the next president’s side.