Trump and his adherents wasted no time before hurling insults at Sen. Kamala Harris, the Democratic nominee for Vice President. First, there was the old standby for any woman who doesn’t flatter Trump—nasty. Then, there was the implication that she might be both angry and a little off kilter—madwoman. Then came the smear on her authenticity—phony. And, of course, they trotted out the racist implication that she isn’t even an American, because she was born to immigrant parents.
The attacks are predictable, pathetic, and cruel. Americans should be ashamed to have a man in the highest office who not only allows such smears, but encourages them and lobs them from the once-respectable lawn of the White House. It was bad enough when Trump led his racist birther campaign against President Barack Obama, but at that point he was a private citizen. He was just another stupid, hateful man lobbing stupid, hateful attacks. Now, he sits in the Oval Office where he tweets this racist vitriol and elevates white supremacists to leadership positions.
Fortunately, we can restore some dignity to our country this November. Unfortunately, Trump is doing everything he can to stop us. In the midst of a pandemic, he is trying to hamstring the postal service to make it harder to vote by mail. He’s installed one of his corrupt cronies as postmaster general to make sure the hit job is successful. And he continues to court interference from Russia.
This is all Trump knows how to do: attack and destroy. He has no talent for leadership or for bringing people together. He has no instinct for improvement. He only knows how to divide and tear things down. He attacks people, particularly women, with ugly smears and slurs. He attacks institutions—the Postal Service, the health care system—by pulling away resources and waiting for them to fail. Thanks to Trump and Pence, nearly 170,000 Americans are dead from a virus that other countries have managed to fight. And he’s working to undermine and steal the next election.
Sen. Harris was born and raised in America. She is as American as any person can be. Trump and Pence are the ones who are un-American. They are angry and nasty and mad. And phony? Yes, they are phony. They feign patriotism while tearing down democracy. They claim to value life, while stepping over bodies. They represent a twisted, ugly version of America’s past.
Kamala Harris represents the future.