From the Left



Trump Makes It Tough to be Sympathetic

Dick Polman on

We can probably agree that falling ill with a dire disease is the one thing that could’ve made Donald Trump a human being worthy of universal sympathy.

“Nobody should have to suffer,” “thoughts and prayers,” the whole nine yards. We teach our kids to be compassionate toward others, so the least we can do is practice what we preach.

But boy oh boy, does this guy make it tough to be nice.

Perhaps we should simply stipulate that the sympathy we extend comes with lots of caveats. Because Trump doesn’t deserve anything more - not after everything he has done, and continues to do. And if holding back on sympathy makes you feel guilty, cut yourself a break, because you have plenty of company.

In a new national poll, a landslide 63 percent of Americans - including 66 percent of the high-turnout typically Republican seniors - say that Trump, has acted irresponsibly “in handling the risk of coronavirus infection to the people who have been around him.”

And Joe Biden rightly concurs. In Miami Monday night he said: “Anybody who contracts the virus by essentially saying masks don’t matter, social distancing doesn’t matter, I think is responsible for what happens to them.”


That works for me.

I’m not saying that it’s appropriate to dance with joy at the prospect of Trump suffering or dying. That kind of behavior is low rent, and we’ve seen too much of it over the years.

When Edward Kennedy died in 2009, people posted comments like this on the ABC News website: “Hot diggity damn! Maybe we’re finally rid of him!” When Dick Cheney was hospitalized with chest pains in 2010, people posted comments like this on the Washington Post website: “I just hope they don’t desecrate Arlington National Cemetery with that piece of carrion.”

Nevertheless, it feels appropriate, and morally just, to dial back the empathy for a narcissistic madman who warrants the name Typhoid Donny.


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