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America has become a nation of victims

Ruben Navarrette Jr. on

So they picked up torches, and marched, and shouted: "You will not replace us. Jews will not replace us."

This rank bigotry and anti-Semitism made other people feel victimized because they somehow thought they had a right to go through life without ever being offended by anything. The offended staged counterprotests, which made the original protesters feel victimized as if their right to free speech were being violated. And so on.

The Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave is now the Land of the Aggrieved and the Home of the Picked On.

This transformation is much more important than the question that captivates the attention of the left and the media (as if there were a difference at this point). Do we have a white supremacist in the White House?

A lot of my Latino and African-American friends are convinced we do. But I think they're wrong. What do they know? Some of them said the same thing about every Republican president since Ronald Reagan while turning a blind eye to outright racists in the Democratic Party. Also, Donald Trump has been in the public eye for more than 30 years -- donating money to civil rights groups, posing for pictures with Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, and supporting Democrats. I personally never heard anyone say he was a racist or white supremacist until he became a Republican. That smells fishy.

Besides, Trump's presidency has an expiration date. In a few years, we'll wake up from this national nightmare.

It's the culture of victimhood that Americans should really be worried about. It wasn't just Trump, white supremacists, the media, local police, and activists on the militant left who emerged from the Charlottesville fiasco with their reputations sullied. The American spirit also took a terrible beating.

When did the greatest country on Earth stop being a place where people -- with nothing but hunger for a second chance -- could come to work hard and build a new life? When did it become a place where everyone pushes their own set of grievances?

As an American, none of this makes sense. I thought we were made from heartier stock.

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Ruben Navarrette's email address is ruben@rubennavarrette.com.

(c) 2017, The Washington Post Writers Group

 

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