Sure, it’s easy to make fun of Donald Trump. The front-page of the New York Daily News portrayed him as a clown.
The mocking mainstream media had a field day after Trump announced that he was running for President. The speech was “like it was plagiarized from an old drunk man mumbling to himself in a bar,” wrote Chicago Tribune columnist, Red Huppke.
Others called Trump egotistical, bombastic, a bloviating buffoon.
The Daily Show’s Jon Stewart sounded positively gleeful about the Trump event saying “it was over a half-hour of the most beautifully ridiculous jibber-jabber ever to pour forth from the mouth of a billionaire.”
How hilarious. It’s easy to sit back and have a good laugh at those we despise.
But there’s a dark side to the thrill of political hating. It contributes to a nasty climate of cynicism, distrust and even despair.
“We citizens need to look inward a little,” says Arthur C. Brooks, President of the American Enterprise Institute.
“Whether or not we want to admit it, political hate is a demand-driven phenomenon. We are the ones creating a big market for it.”
This week Donald Trump is the most searched Presidential candidate on Google.
Do your own calculation. For every newspaper article, radio or TV story about a new idea or a constructive way to think about a political problem, there must be a hundred examples of ridicule, sensation or mockery.
What the heck are we doing to our public square?
I agree with Arthur Brooks. You can fight back. Whatever your own view of the world, “avoid indulging in snarky, contemptuous dismissals of Americans on the other side.”