David Brooks’ Must Read Column On Donald Trump
This is why I love newspapers so much.
David Brooks wrote the following in The New York Times.
The leaders of the Republican Party are … going down meekly and hoping for a quiet convention. They seem blithely unaware that this is a Joe McCarthy moment. People will be judged by where they stood at this time. Those who walked with Trump will be tainted forever after for the degradation of standards and the general election slaughter.
The better course for all of us – Republican, Democrat and independent – is to step back and take the long view, and to begin building for that. This election – not only the Trump phenomenon but the rise of Bernie Sanders, also – has reminded us how much pain there is in this country. According to a Pew Research poll, 75 percent of Trump voters say that life has gotten worse for people like them over the last half century.
This declinism intertwines with other horrible social statistics. The suicide rate has surged to a 30-year high – a sure sign of rampant social isolation. A record number of Americans believe the American dream is out of reach. And for millennials, social trust is at historic lows. Trump’s success grew out of that pain, but he is not the right response to it. …
We’ll probably need a new national story. Up until now, America’s story has been some version of the rags-to-riches story … I don’t know what the new national story will be, but maybe it will be less individualistic and more redemptive. … We’ll probably need a new definition of masculinity, too. … The traditional masculine ideal isn’t working anymore. It leads to high dropout rates, high incarceration rates, low labor force participation rates. This is an economy that rewards emotional connection and verbal expressiveness. …
We’ll also need to rebuild the sense that we’re all in this together. … Maybe the task is to build a ladder of hope. … Trump will have his gruesome moment. The time is best spent elsewhere, meeting the neighbors who have become strangers, and listening to what they have to say.