Trump’s culture war and war of words

Herb Boyd | 9/28/2017, 12:19 p.m.
The topsy-turvy Trump world tumbled even further into chaos and turmoil last week as the president ratcheted up his culture ...
President Donald Trump CNN photo

The topsy-turvy Trump world tumbled even further into chaos and turmoil last week as the president ratcheted up his culture war, asserted once more his support for repealing and replacing Obamacare, sided with a right wing candidate in Alabama and drew a line in the sand when faced off with the NFL.

It seems Trump will go to no end in his appeal to his base, and his bellicose response to North Korea and its leader Kim Jong-un has prompted an equally dangerous response from Kim, insisting that Trump’s insults (“Little Rocket Man”) and promise to “destroy North Korea,” is an open “declaration of war.”

Meanwhile, Trump has outraged hundreds of NFL players and owners with his charge that their protestations are unpatriotic, and that his opposition has nothing to with race.

Lately, even with hurricanes demolishing the island nations of the Caribbean, Trump has only tweeted his concern about the devastation in Puerto Rico. He has been so consumed with winning the culture war that he finally got around to the disaster in Puerto Rico, promising to visit there next Tuesday.

If Trump isn’t already completely unsettled—which many view as a permanent state of mind—news came that key members of his presidential campaign, including the departed Steve Bannon and Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, used their personal email addresses to convey government matters. Such action was the charge Trump used against Hillary Clinton and a major plank in his platform.

From moment to moment, it’s not easy to discern what might be the most critical item on his political and cultural agenda, but with the battle now raging between him and the NFL players, coaches and owners, to say nothing of the tweets from NBA stars LeBron James and Stephen Curry, the culture war is getting the most attention.

Seeking comfort from arm-in-arm men of the gridiron, Trump applauded the members of NASCAR, saying he was “so proud of NASCAR” and that it did not “put up with disrespecting our country or our flag. They said it loud and clear!”

Monday, NASCAR released a statement citing its respect for the national anthem and said that the anthem has “always been a hallmark of our pre-face events.” On the other hand, Dale Earnhardt Jr., an icon of NASCAR, tweeted his support of the protesters: “All Americans R granted rights 2 peaceful protests. Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable,” he concluded, quoting President Kennedy.

How all of this turmoil will play out remains to be seen. Almost lost in the recent brouhaha is Colin Kaepernick, the quarterback who began the kneeling in protest during the playing of the anthem.

One thing that could cool things off might be one of the clubs offering the quarterback a contract.

That’s almost as unlikely as Trump’s capitulation on the culture wars.