Trump World Grab-Bag--A Collection

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Are they Listening to Him, Now?

I know, coming just a couple days after dragging Carson for his comments on what he would do if faced with a gunman, it might seem like I'm enjoying one of my OCD phases--but the story told on, by, and about Ben Carson about what really (maybe) happened when he was confronted with a gunman is pretty fascinating. In the legend, when a stickup artist put a gun in Carson's ribs, he directed the felon's attention to the person behind the register. Har har har. Not exactly the tale of derring-do of an attempt at physical force to compel a potential shooter to comply, but still a thing one would have to have a certain presence of mind to say. The Daily Beast article is skeptical. I'm skeptical. One might point out that deflecting the assailant's attention from his (valuable) self to the (perceived-less-valuable) fast food cashier's self is sheer classism.

That kind of thinking, that there is a quality of some citizens being lesser-than, is pretty much a trend. He states that some "lifestyles are more valuable than others". Lifestyles, schmifestyles, I come from a country that made the point that all men are created equal (except for the slavery business, and that "men" at the time sort of excluded women). One exceptionally curious bit of reasoning along those lines comes from his assertion that "gay marriage" (we call it marriage equality around here) is like child seats for conjoined twins.

Wow. There is a kind of ableism about that, isn't there? People who grasp the idea that marriage is a state that human beings enjoy and means the same thing for straight or gay couples see marriage as an individual right that confers certain securities to the persons involved in that state of matrimony. It's the same thing because the same needs exist. But take what he's saying--marriage, like car seats, is an accommodation. We can accommodate "normal" people, but if you "don't fit" our definition of "normal", you don't deserve any accommodation because of your differences. A car seat is intended for the purposes of safety for an infant. What this grotesque analogy is saying is that no accommodation should be made to protect the life of infants who are conjoined by arranging some kind of safety mechanism because the accommodation itself is commodified. I realize one of his major achievements was separating conjoined twins, but there are cases where this is not possible, or where some other congenital issue might make accommodating physical differences such that standard measures don't really apply--but the children would still need to be safe if their life is valued right?  Aren't they still people, even if they are different? I'm past objecting to the dismissal of LGBT people's basic enjoyment of equal rights, but the assumption that we shouldn't or wouldn't take extraordinary measures for the "different" among us.

Now, stuff like his gaffe about whether a Muslim could be president seem tame. He might now be saying a Muslim could be president but would have to "subjugate' (I would have gone with "subordinate", but I was an English Major) their beliefs to the Constitution. Yep--but so, verily, would Christians. That's how equality works. He seems not to have thought too deeply about the subject though--the thing is, Carson is a bright man who seems to have outsourced a lot of his political thinking to Glenn Beck. And because of that brand-newness to politics, his lack of understanding of things like the debt limit, in an interview that devolved into the whaargarble of the gold standard, is understandable. He doesn't know. It wasn't important to him to know until this minute. He doesn't know why it's important to know. He shouldn't be number two in the polls on the GOP side, unless so many of these folks also don't know history or politics that I have some probing questions about our educational system.

So when he says something like more guns should have stopped Hitler--wow. Gun laws were liberalized under Hitler in 1938, for everyone, except the Jews, who were disarmed. When the laws passed are already racist, fighting back that way is inescapably fatal. I'm not sure how he thinks an already-racist society would look at Jews fighting back. I would guess an armed Jewish rebellion would be a Reichstag fire times a billion. The ADL contradicts him, also.  I could ask him whether guns did the BLA any good, but I get the feeling, despite other factors, he isn't really a student of the Revolution at Home either.

He's not ready. He isn't. He's objectively short of things that would make him ready. He just is.

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