Imagine a situation where Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump gave a speech to donors and said, “I don’t hate all Muslims. I just oppose those who I lump into a cultural ‘basket of deplorables.'” How long do you think it would take before the collective might of the U.S. media crushed him under the weight of his own “grossly generalistic” words?
Answer: Mr. Trump would be mercilessly beaten day in and day out by pundits, political action committees, Hollywood celebrities, and campaign attack ads. There would be no respite from withering criticism until his reputation was ground into a million pieces and thrown into the dustbin of history.
Now consider Hillary Clinton’s “grossly generalistic” claim that roughly 50 percent of Mr. Trump’s supporters belong in a “basket of deplorables.”
CNN reported Saturday:
Hillary Clinton told an audience of donors Friday night that half of Donald Trump’s supporters fall into “the basket of deplorables,” meaning people who are racist, sexist, homophobic or xenophobic.
In an effort to explain the support behind Trump, Clinton went on to describe the rest of Trump supporters as people who are looking for change in any form because of economic anxiety and urged her supporters to empathize with them.
“To just be grossly generalistic, you can put half of Trump supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables,” Clinton said. “Right? Racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic, you name it.”
Republicans are never allowed to be “grossly generalistic.” Just ask Mitt “47%” Romney.
If a Republican makes a generalization about any issue that might make some minorities look bad, then he or she is a racistbigothomophobe. If a Democrat makes a generalization that makes millions of white people look like racistbigothomophobes, then we are supposed to accept the claim as a general truth. Classic!
Surprisingly, CNN pointed to a new Quinnipiac University poll on Saturday showing that most people who are voting for Mr. Trump are doing so because they do not like Mrs. Clinton. She is such an unlikable and untrustworthy politician (Dare we say, “deplorable”?), that tens-of-millions of Americans will essentially vote against her instead of “for” Mr. Trump.
America, give or take a few percentage points each election cycle, is politically split. There are about 40 percent who will always vote for Republicans, another 40 percent who will always vote for Democrats, and then another 20 percent who are up for grabs even though they may heavily lean in one direction. Therefore, saying that “half” of Mr. Trump’s supporters belong in a “basket of deplorables” is politically tone-deaf.
It will be very interesting to see how much this comment affects Mrs. Clinton’s support in the weeks ahead. Regardless, independent voters should ask themselves why it is that one political party gets to generalize about millions of law-abiding Americans, while the other is not allowed to do so with law-breakers and terrorists.