Washington Post Is Suddenly Very Concerned Over Whether The President Can Tolerate Dissent

Washington Post Is Suddenly Very Concerned Over Whether The President Can Tolerate Dissent


No, not that president. The Editorial Board is worried about the soon to be

Can Trump tolerate dissent

IN THE glow of his election victory Nov. 8, after months of a foul and bitter campaign, Donald Trump invoked a familiar and reassuring message. “Now it is time for America to bind the wounds of division,” he said. “I pledge to every citizen of our land that I will be president for all of Americans, and this is so important to me.” It was important for the nation, too.

Over the weekend, Mr. Trump grew infuriated when the cast of the Broadway hit “Hamilton” delivered a message aloud to Vice President-elect Mike Pence after curtain call, appealing to the new administration to be inclusive….

OK, you probably know the story on that by now. Here’s the thing: there’s a time and place for everything. Propriety. This was not the time nor place. Perform the show. Afterwards, go to the press. Doing it on-stage makes it all about themselves, and drags everyone into the kerfuffle. People paid good money. Consider Kanye West. He went on a rant in support of Trump on stage (along with Beyonce, Jay Z, and others). Not the time nor place. Play the concert. Give people what they paid their money for. There’s just too much mixing of the personal with the political.

Furthermore, Free Speech doesn’t mean people can’t respond. The 1st Amendment does mean that Trump, though he hasn’t taken office yet, cannot penalize or threaten to penalize their narcissistic protest.

These kind of outbursts helped fuel Mr. Trump’s political rise; he has always been thin-skinned and prone to rapid-fire insults. But there is something new and deeply worrisome about the weekend’s tweet storm: Mr. Trump is soon to be president of the United States. His words matter.

Yes, words matter. Things like “if they bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun” would set the WPEB off if Trump said it.

What is so disturbing here is not just Mr. Trump’s hotheaded Twitter habits, but rather his casual disregard for freedom of expression and visceral intolerance of criticism.

If only the WPEB had been as worked up when Mr. Obama targeted Conservative groups via the Internal Revenue Service. Mr. Obama has targeted Congressional Republicans, the Supreme Court, private citizens, and private corporations. He’s targeted Christian churches. He’s lectured citizens for daring to not hold the same opinion as he does. He’s attempted to get Fox News thrown out of the White House press pool. He’s said nasty things about Americans who fail to believe what he believes. And he’s allowed his people to do this all under his watch, without attempting to stop the assaults on freedom.

Where was the WPEB? MIA.

Mr. Trump’s weekend tweets carried a tone of intimidation unfit for the presidency. The actor’s message and the television satire were examples of free expression. Whether Mr. Trump thinks they were rude or not funny is not relevant. He must embrace what it means to be president of all Americans: showing tolerance toward those who criticize him, now and for years to come.

Again, where was the WPEB these past years in the Era of Obama? Where was the WPEB when Obama used the power of the Executive Office to intimidate people across America? Where were they when he refused to show tolerance?

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.

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