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Setting The Record Straight

Published: January 11, 2017

To the Editor:

Peter McLoughlin’s letter, “Let Freedom Ring” (Letter Hive, 1/16/2017), is all the confirmation anyone needs to know that Donald Trump and his supporters real slogan is — Let’s Make America Hate Again.

Nowhere is this more evident than in the baseless racist claim that the Obamas “were handed everything they got on a silver platter by a guilt-ridden white populace.” Or in the perverted statement “This cancer [progressivism] has metastasized into our educational system and our media, producing the kind of lying, effete, panty-wearing, precious, scared little snowflakes we’ve come to regard as ‘normal’ Americans.”

For starters, the definition of progressive is “favoring or advocating progress, change, improvement…” It’s clear from the contents of his letter that Mr McLoughlin fears progress and fears change.

Claims that progressivism have been trounced are also false. Let’s set the record straight. Donald Trump may have won the Electoral College, but he lost the popular vote by almost three million votes. Democratic candidates for the US Senate received nearly four million more votes than Republicans (actually eight million more if you consider that Republicans couldn’t even get a candidate onto the ballot in California). Those numbers say that the majority of Americans don’t believe progressivism is ending. So please don’t confuse Donald Trump’s victory with a change in the general populous’s desire to move our country forward.

Unfortunately, the Constitution doesn’t allow us to test President Obama’s hypothesis that he would have beaten Trump had they run against each other.

But consider these facts: President Obama finishes his tenure with a +15 percent net favorability rating, while Donald Trump enters office with a -4.5 net negative favorability rating. That is the first time in the history of favorability polling that an incoming president begins his tenure with a negative rating; and that’s not something to be proud of. President Obama won his first term with nearly seven million more votes than Donald Trump received, and his second term with three million more votes.

What is indisputable are the following facts: during President Obama’s tenure nearly 12 million new jobs were added to the economy, the budget deficit he inherited was cut by 58 percent, the S&P 500 rose by 247 percent, the average price of gasoline during 2016 was 34 percent lower than it was in 2008, and health care inflation is at a six-decade low. Only the next four years will decide if the Twitterer in Chief decides to grow up and get to work. Besting that record will not be an easy task.

In the meantime, real Americans will continue to stand up to the language that you put forth against your fellow citizens with whom you don’t share common views. For it only encourages racists, xenophobes, homophobes, and anti-Semites, among others, whom have suddenly become emboldened to perform hate crimes in rapidly rising numbers since the election, for which there is no place in our society.

Peter Sandler

4 Far Horizon Drive, Sandy Hook         January 11, 2017

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