And why her response to a loaded question about hating the President was completely appropriate and not a “nervous fit” (as the President described it).
Because Trump throws around the word “hate” all the time in an effort to get people believing that “hating” Trump is the same as hating America. Which makes anyone who “hates” Trump a traitor. So it’s a loaded question lobbed by a guy from Sinclair Broadcasting. (If you’re not familiar with Sinclair, one way of looking at the giant broadcast group is a bunch of mini-Fox News’ all tied together under a common owner, who actually exerts a lot more influence over local news coverage than Fox ever did at the local stations it owns. And it’s very likely Sinclair owns a local TV station in your area, though you may not even know it.)
A lot–A LOT–of what the President’s been doing since taking office is trying to build the following equation:
Hate Trump = Hate America
In fact, if you boil it down, that’s pretty much what all his rallies are all about. And he’s had some success at getting that message to reverberate, especially among his supporters.
“The Squad” hates America, House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff hates America; in fact, is a traitor. Remember all that? None of them ever actually said they hated America, just they vociferously (and sometimes profanely) oppose Trump’s policies. Or had the gall to do oversight of the President, which in Schiff’s case, is his job.
But anyone who expresses an opposing political view, or does not agree with what Trump’s doing, or how he’s doing it, is a “hater”. And “they do not love America”. So the opposite of loving Trump becomes “hating America”. And it’s only a short step from there to “traitor”. You see how this works?
In that context, Pelosi’s response is completely appropriate to a question that addresses hating the President because of what the President wants that to mean, and has come to mean for many Trump supporters. Because when reporters from Far-right organizations start bringing up the word “hate” around Nancy Pelosi, there’s a whole lot more packed into that.
And she didn’t just say “don’t mess with me”. Trump wants you to focus only on that one little moment where she warns “don’t mess with me”, which most people are. Which in one way actually is good, but also underscores what Trump is trying to prove: that she’s an America-hating (and perpetually drunk) thug! And a woman too! Since according to the President’s Tweets that statement was evidence not of righteous anger or resentment but of a “nervous fit.”
Here’s what she actually said:
“I think this President is a coward when it comes to helping our kids who are afraid of gun violence. I think he is cruel when he doesn’t deal with helping our DREAMERS, of which we are very proud. I think he’s in denial about…the climate crisis. However, that’s about the election….Take it up in the election. This is about the Constitution of the United States. And the facts that leads to the President’s violation of the oath of office. As a Catholic I resent your using the word “hate” in a sentence that addresses me. I don’t hate anyone. I was raised in way that is heart full of love and always pray for the President. And I still pray for the President. I pray for the President all the time. So don’t mess with me when it comes to words like that.”
And here’s a clip of her saying it:
Is Pelosi showing courage? We think so. We understand you may not. And we don’t hate you for it–Wow!
But Pelosi has been showing something else the President hasn’t these days: backbone. She held her overeager party back when they first were pushing to impeach, and now that they’re moving ahead, she’s at the helm, taking full responsibility. Instead of holing up inside the White House, Tweeting wildly, but not letting any of his direct subordinates say a peep. While he gripes about Democrats not passing USMCA, which they will.That’s his trade deal with Canada and Mexico. It will almost certainly mean higher prices for cars in this country, which is fine if it also means many more U.S. jobs. But if that in turns makes it harder for U.S. automakers to compete globally on price, it also implies perpetual federal government support for the industry, which is, well, socialism. (And really old-school socialism). But we’ve already seen in Trump’s America that corporate welfare is fine. It’s just aid that goes to actual, individual people and families that’s no good. But we digress…
Politicians have had political rows before, and definitely don’t all like each other, but it’s seldom if ever been put this starkly. And there’s the small issue of the fact that it’s not reality. Not agreeing with Trump does not equal hating this country. We, as Americans, expect to have deep divisions and profound conflict and the point is yet, we work together. Because we see what’s commonly good. And what’s common sense. That may be the most damaging thing of all the things Trump’s been trying to break. As we’ve said before: we are happy to live in a country where someone else’s idea of loving our country may be different than ours…or the President’s.
And hey, we don’t “hate” Trump as a person. He seems like an angry, odd, maybe even fun guy in a social setting. But we do think he’s terribly corrupt and doing tremendous damage to the country, and should be held to account for that.