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Thank you, Mr Trump

  • Published at 07:01 pm August 11th, 2016
  • Last updated at 12:29 pm August 23rd, 2016
Thank you, Mr Trump
Mr Trump, you may think your politically incorrect ways were an asset, but in reality, it has slowly eroded away at your legitimacy for presidency with every controversial comment you’ve made. For the Clinton campaign, your gift of gab has been the gift that keeps on giving. When you went after Muslims in general (December 2015), and the Khan family in particular (July 2016) One of the most powerful moments of this year’s Democratic National Convention was when the grieving parents of fallen US Army Capt Humayun Khan held up a copy of the US Constitution and questioned whether you had ever read the document. Because, how could you have called for the “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the US” otherwise? In the days following, you responded by questioning Gold Star mother, Ghazala Khan, as she grieved in silence between a portrait of her late son, and a national viewing audience.

If your candidacy served a purpose, it was to demonstrate that the foundations of this country -- despite some cracks you helped reveal along the way -- are still strong. The concrete is being reinforced as we speak in the form the majority electorate’s rejection of you as a viable candidate

Rather than view her silence as a reflection of her composed dignity and grief, you insinuated that her faith or culture forbade her from speaking. How wrong you were. What was the nation’s response? “Without saying a thing, all the world, all America, felt my pain. I am a Gold Star mother. Whoever saw me felt me in their heart,” wrote Ghazala Khan. And it was true -- within days, Captain Humayun Khan’s gravesite at Arlington National Cemetery became the most colourful memorial on the cemetery’s 624-acre expanse as it overflowed with flowers, cards, and tokens of gratitude for his heroic service and sacrifice. How ironic it is that a humble tombstone bearing the Islamic symbol of the star and crescent did what you, with your vast resources, and “Make America great again” slogans, could not do in the course of your campaign: Unite people of all faiths and backgrounds over common ground. As for your political standing at this point -- media outlets both on the left and right called your feud-week with the Khans your worst week yet. How hard was the hit? In the lead-up to the DNC your poll numbers were slightly behind Clinton (41-45%); post-convention finds you trailing a staggering 10 points behind. That’s a lot of ground lost. So, where does the road lead? To your credit, your off-the-cuff, populist style initially played in your favour. You generated controversy and knew how to leverage the media to fuel your ascension. You dominated the 24-hour news cycles, and stirred the headlines as a non-establishment, non-conformist leader of the masses. You activated new voting groups, and successfully tapped into the fearful strains of the American political sub-culture that helped you surge ahead in the rankings and clinch the Republican Party nomination. It seemed that your initial momentum just might get you close to the White House. But this would all change very fast. The very tactics that once propelled you forward, are now the very same reasons for your downfall. Today, we find a Republican Party that is divided and struggling to find its once mighty soul. You have forced the party into a painfully awkward dance reminiscent of a Faustian tango: While there is a reluctant embrace of you as the renegade standard bearer of the party, there is a leaning away when it comes to the words you use, and the ideas you espouse. Many have refused, on principle, to take part in this disharmonious footwork, and have broken with party-lines to vote their conscience this election. And with just three months left before the election, 50 GOP national security officials released a jointly signed document that expressed their inability to vote for you, adding brutal criticism that you would be “the most reckless president in American history.” To secure the nomination of a major national party is no small feat. It takes courage, political savvy, and monumental drive to achieve, no doubt. But to ascend to the most powerful office in the world requires something much more: Unifying values that give meaning to the words on the seal of our great nation: E Pluribus Unum (Out of Many, One). And, Mr Trump, as these five episodes of your campaign have demonstrated, you are no unifier. The very character of your campaign is one that can be represented by the most iconic of your campaign promises: A stark dividing wall separating two peoples; one that you wish to build at cost of the other. If your candidacy served a purpose, it was to demonstrate that the foundations of this country -- despite some cracks you helped reveal along the way -- are still strong. The concrete is being reinforced as we speak in the form the majority electorate’s rejection of you as a viable candidate. Soon, your job here will be done. You will be fired. And American will remain great because of it.
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