Trump's brand of patriotism vs. the new liberal anti-Americanism
Despite all the grousing and griping about his "politicizing" of the Fourth of July and "militarizing" America's birthday, President Donald Trump turned the tables on his antagonists, and pulled it off.
As master of ceremonies and keynote speaker at his "Salute to America" Independence Day event, Trump was a manifest success.
A president acting as president is almost always a more effective campaigner than a president acting as campaigner. And Trump, in what he said and did not say, played the president Thursday night.
The crowd on the Mall was huge and friendly, extending from the Lincoln Memorial to the Washington Monument. The TV coverage was excellent. Friday, virtually every major newspaper had front-page stories and photos.
Earlier, former Vice President Joe Biden had snidely asked, "What, I wonder, will Donald Trump say this evening when he speaks to the nation at an event designed more to stroke his ego than celebrate American ideals?"
Thursday evening, Joe got his answer.
Despite predictions he would use "Salute to America" for a rally speech, the president shelved partisan politics to recite and celebrate the good things Americans of all colors and creeds are doing, and the great things Americans have done since 1776.
"Together, we are part of one of the greatest stories ever told -- the story of America," said Trump. "It is the epic tale of a great nation whose people have risked everything for what they know is right and what they know is true."
It was not a celebration of Trump but of America.
"What a great country!" declared the president. "(F)or Americans nothing is impossible." Ours is "the most exceptional nation in the history of the world."