President Donald Trump is on the defensive for a tweet he wrote Sunday.

He said, in part:

“So interesting to see ‘Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly ... and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run . Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. Then come back and show us how ... it is done.

Of course, the congresswomen he was referring to, Reps. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, are all U.S. citizens, and only one, Ms. Omar, was born outside the United States.

But the president doubled down, and made it worse for everyone, especially himself, tweeting out yesterday afternoon the following message, among others:

“We all know that AOC and this crowd are a bunch of Communists, they hate Israel, they hate our own Country, they’re calling the guards along our Border (the Border Patrol Agents) Concentration Camp Guards, they accuse people who support Israel as doing it for the Benjamin’s ....”

In separate remarks, the president said the four were definitely socialists and possibly communists.

It has been a long time since Americans called each other communists, or a person in power called fellow Americans communists. It is a term of malice, and it is libel per se, when said about someone who is not a communist. And none of these women is a communist.

It is as wrong to call a person a communist for disagreeing with you as it is to call that person a racist for disagreeing with you. And many, many people have abused that word, until, at last it is implied that even Joe Biden is racist.

We need to stop the labeling and name-calling in this country.

And we don’t get to question each other’s patriotism or love of country just because we disagree, either.

We don’t get to judge each other’s hearts.

Disagree? Yes, we may disagree, and vehemently.

But stop the name-calling.

As for the president, he might want to consider hiring a tweetmeister to screen his spelling and form and to slow down his Twitter trigger finger. He is the commander-in-chief and can always choose to hit send anyway.

But because he is commander-in-chief, many, if not most, Americans expect a degree of dignity and decorum. They want more Ronald Reagan and less Howard Stern. And many who approve of Mr. Trump’s policies and deplore the drift of the Democratic Party to the cultural and socialist left, are dismayed that he keeps lowering the bar of presidential behavior.

Core Trump voters may not mind vulgarity and name-calling in their president, but many Americans on the right and in the middle do. And if the economy goes south, they will find it all too easy to abandon a president who embarrasses them and demeans his office, conservative court nominees notwithstanding.

— The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Recommended for you