The comedian asked Trump fans how they can vote for such a thuggish leader. It's a question that deserves a response.
Dear Jim, (I hope it’s all right to address you informally),
You sincerely asked via Twitter why Trump supporters stick by him after his latest crude insult.
Help me here. I’m being sincere. This is STILL your guy? Forget the news source. Forget that this part of a pattern. Forget the lies & the bluster. Forget the impeachment stuff. I’m curious why you are still behind someone who consistently behaves like this? Help me. https://t.co/lTKE55dm9R
— Jim Gaffigan (@JimGaffigan) December 19, 2019
Unlike many of your celebrity peers, you’re tackling politics in a genuine, compassionate way. No insults. No hyperbole. You’re already ahead of the curve, and your question demands an answer far longer than what Twitter allows. So here goes.
Why do Trump supporters stay with him? I’ll offer my story, but I suspect I speak for many.
I didn’t vote for Trump the last time around. I had no electoral love for Hillary Clinton, but I feared Trump’s Republican persona was an elaborate con. Plus, he had no chance of actually, you know, winning.
I was wrong in more ways than one.
Flash forward to today.
Trump’s economy is booming. Roaring. Soaring. If his predecessor boasted similar figures the press would never stop spreading the news. That alone matters deeply to everyday Americans, especially those living paycheck to paycheck. President Barack Obama famously said you can’t wave a magic wand and improve the economy.
President Trump pulled some Harry Potter shtick from his unconventional hat.
My Trump support is about more than a robust economy, though. I put up with his occasionally cruel Tweets, boastful posture and unpresidential mien for a simple reason.
Look at Plan B.
The modern Democratic party supports open borders. They see a bulging deficit (both parties are to blame here) and want to give free health care to illegal immigrants. They eviscerated a good man, Brett Kavanaugh, based on the flimsiest evidence possible.
All the while they’ve ignored Joe Biden’s serial groping and two women who credibly accused, and the phrase is properly used here, Va. Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax of sexual assault.
Just a year or two ago most Americans, even pro-choice voters, recoiled at third-trimester abortions. Now, it’s a key part of the Democratic platform. Just Google “Ralph Northam abortion” and read what he had to say on the matter.
The disgraced Governor isn’t an outlier.
Will any of the 20-plus Democrats running for president support any legal limits on abortion? So far, the candidates who have been asked that question have either dodged it or answered in the negative.
Here’s one topic where we should be seeing eye to eye. The modern Left hates free speech. Loathes it. Just look at your average university. What party is chasing conservatives off campus, drowning out their voices and calling anyone with an opposing view a racist, fascist or worse?
Here’s a hint. Chances are they watch at least an hour of MSNBC a day. Maybe three.
Today’s Left cancels comics for telling the “wrong” jokes and entertainers for having the “wrong” opinions. Again, this should concern you deeply. The lines they set in place today are constantly shifting. Is it possible your self-deprecating fat jokes will be dubbed “fat shaming” by 2022? Or earlier?
Will you be canceled next?
President Trump is no fan of political correctness. He and his supporters rage against it. It’s a battle worth fighting, and Trump is firmly on the right side of history here.
The fight for free speech extends beyond the college campus.
Look around social media today. Conservative voices are being silence on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and more. Do you think these big tech overlords won’t double down once a Democrat is in the Oval Office? History repeatedly shows that those who wish to silence voices don’t stop once they get a head of steam.
They ramp up their censorship.
Once again, having a firebrand Republican like Trump in office is a barrier against that cold, hard truth.
And then there’s RussiaGate. For three years the media and progressives insisted Trump colluded with Russia to steal the election. The Mueller Report debunked that mass hypnosis theory. Now, we’re learning the FBI broke rule after rule after rule to infiltrate the Trump campaign.
Angry yet? Or did you not see the 17 “significant errors” found in the Inspector General’s report this month? Would you like it if the government pulled that on Team Obama? I sure wouldn’t.
How is this any different?
As for Trump’s often-ugly tone, we’re on the same page. I still wonder why you and your Hollywood peers don’t speak out when the “tone” comes from your own community. Oscar winner Robert De Niro recently said the president should have a bag of feces smashed against his face for all the world to see.
Again, he’s no outlier.
Why aren’t more stars speaking out against that verbiage? Can you understand why Trump supporters, who may otherwise hate his rhetoric, tune it out when his critics wallow in the very same mud?
It’s worth noting that some of the worst charges against President Trump (he locks kids in cages!) were also done by his predecessor with nary a peep out protest. And the president’s “fine people” praise for Nazis following the Charlottesville protests may be the most egregious case of media malpractice in modern history.
Plus, he’s the worst Hitler ever. He continually defends Israel while demanding the UN take a strong stand against anti-gay policies.
“We stand in solidarity with LGBTQ people who live in countries that punish, jail or execute individuals based upon sexual orientation.”
We could argue endlessly on policy. You may want higher taxes, more entitlement spending and health care policies in line with European nations.
Fine. Let’s have those debates. For now, the bigger issues speak the loudest for me … and many other new and returning Trump voters.
Thanks for being genuinely curious to hear the other side. I love your stand-up comedy and wish you and your happy brood a wonderful New Year brimming with Hot Pockets.
Christian Toto, editor, HollywoodinToto.com