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Should Trump decide whether you should be offended?

By Clarence Page, Tribune Content Agency on

But as much as that charge has been made by her critics, evidence that she had benefited professionally from the claim has yet to be found. Warren has since become a favorite in the Democratic Party's progressive wing as a possible presidential candidate. That makes her fair game for political attacks but not, as a matter of common decency, racial slurs.

Should Trump be the judge of who should be offended by Trump? Not hardly. But as long as he has that loyal conservative base hungering for more liberal-bashing red meat, we can expect Trump to dish it up.

His Warren go-round erupted on the heels of another racially tinged Trump eruption. Trump and LaVar Ball, outspoken father of Los Angeles Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball and UCLA forward LiAngelo Ball, went back and forth for days after LiAngelo's shoplifting arrest in China.

Trump wanted to bask in credit for getting LiAngelo and two UCLA teammates back to the U.S., but LaVar instead questioned whether Trump had any role in the process. Not surprisingly, Trump launched a Twitter feud in which he called Ball an "ungrateful fool" and "a poor man's version of Don King but without the hair."

Ball offered to bury the hatchet by sending Trump a pair of Lonzo's high-priced signature gym shoes, courtesy of the Big Baller Brand, which papa Ball founded.

Frankly, my response to both of these self-promoting blowhards echoes the sentiments that Henry Kissinger allegedly expressed about the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s: "It's a pity they both can't lose."

 

Instead, both Trump and the senior Ball turn their thoroughly unnecessary dispute into gold. Trump uses it to fire up his political base and Ball uses it to bring in more customers for Big Baller shoes, just in time for Christmas shopping season.

The big losers are those of us who long for some seriousness in government, especially when the time comes to salute brave heroes like the Navajo code talkers. They used their language skills to transmit the secret messages that helped all of us Americans remain free to speak out.

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(E-mail Clarence Page at cpage@chicagotribune.com.)

(c) 2017 CLARENCE PAGE DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
 

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