In one minute and thirty-two seconds, Donald Trump has managed to apparently validate every far-flung accusation of retributive, bloodthirsty woman-hating that abortion opponents have tried to fend off for 40-plus years. In ninety seconds, Trump gave Democrats a political millstone that they will cinch around the neck of every pro-life politician for the rest of this election season. Planned Parenthood, NARAL, NOW, Emily’s List have all already issued breathless statements. Hillary Clinton has sent out a tweet with her personal “—H” signature. It doesn’t matter that, one hour later, Trump out-and-out reversed himself. They got their soundbite, and it will be played on loop, to the ululations and I-told-you-sos of Cecile Richards and Sally Kohn and the rest, for years.
But is anyone surprised? This is what Trump does — and it’s the reason conservatives, real, genuine, sincere, life- and liberty-loving conservatives, should not simply be exasperated with Trump; they should be furious with him. They should be enraged with every single one of the endorsers who has facilitated this man’s rise. They should be incensed with every pundit and talking-head who has aided and abetted and excused him.
Because this has been the pattern for months now. Donald Trump makes some idiotic comment about a subject he’s never considered — torture, Islam, the First Amendment, health care, women, &c. — and then real conservatives, who have actually rubbed two brain cells together thinking about these subjects, have to spend the next day, or week, or month, putting out the fire, assuring everyone that, no, conservatives don’t actually think like this.
It’s exhausting, it’s absurd, and it should end. Donald Trump’s statements are not intended to be “true” or “false”; they’re not intended to represent what he actually believes, because he doesn’t believe anything. He doesn’t intend his proposals as serious ideas, to be debated and refined and maybe even executed. His utterances are placeholders. They’re strictly intended to fill space in this interview, or at that rally. Self-contradiction doesn’t matter. If one argument is blown up, he’ll switch to another. This is how a cult of personality works. The statements are irrelevant; the only thing that matters is the speaker. If Trump says the sky is orange, there’s no point trying to convince him it’s blue.
Tuttle’s end prescription is not so different from my own: Trump needs to be blackballed by conservatives.