Menu
The New York Times
May 13, 2024
Opinion Columnist

Killing Dogs. Taunting the Homeless. Praising Al Capone. This Is Trump’s Party.

IndieDems Comment:

Plus:

The AJC headline:

Georgia GOP elects election deniers to key posts

(Excerpts)

FULL STORY

IndieDems Comment:

With few exceptions, Georgia Republicans continue to wallow in the same immoral sewer as their guru Trump. The question at this point is not whether Trump is a lying, xenophobic, racist, bullying rapist & misogynist. That has been proven beyond the shadow of a doubt. The question is: how in God’s name can Republicans and other misguided Americans continue to support this immoral cretin?

And why do American religious leaders have no criticism of this reprobate who continues to wantonly violate three of God's Commandments, the ones against lying, committing adultery, and stealing? IndieDems has provided the questions that need to be addressed to those clerics. First of all, to your own preacher, reverend, priest. Ready for you to copy and paste:

https://indiedems.com/.../indiedems-scoops-evangelical.../

The elections in Georgia on May 21 are generally billed as primary contests for Democratic and Republicans candidates. But tucked away on the ballot are two “non-partisan” elections for judges that will actually be decided on May21.

The U.S. House Seat in the 11th Congressional District

Two Democrats—Antonia Daza and Katy L. Stamper—are competing in the primary race for the U.S. 11th Congressional District. The Republican incumbent, Barry Loudermilk, is facing two Republican primary challengers, Lori Pesta and Michael Pons.

Daza was born in Venezuela and earned a bachelor's degree from the Colegio Universitario Monseñor de Talavera in 2002 before moving to Georgia and earning a bachelor's degree from Oglethorpe University in 2021. According to Ballotpedia, Daza says he challenged authority from a young age, and his worldview crystallized around democratic values and fighting oppression. His political activism in Venezuela put him at odds with the Venezuelan government, and he sought asylum in the U.S. in 2003.

Antonio founded Daza Dance in 2008 and has participated in Atlanta’s cultural community ever since. He believes that too may Americans are hindered in reaching their full potential due to discrimination, a lack of opportunities, and a lack of resources. As a U.S. Congressman, he will advocate policies designed to provide all Americans with adequate health care and education. He strongly supports comprehensive federal voter protection legislation.

According to Ballotpedia, Katy Stamper was born in Texas. She received a high school diploma from Temple High School, a bachelor's degree in political science from Emory College, and a J.D. from the University of Georgia in 1986. Stamper served in the U.S. Army. Her career experience includes working as a lawyer and managing a small business. On her campaign website, Stamper says as a U.S. Representative, she will “take on the issues that affect everyday Americans, the same issues being ignored by self-serving career politicians.” Her priorities:

Non-partisan Judicial Offices to be Decided on May 21

One seat on the Georgia Supreme Court is being contested. The candidates are not running under political party banners, but their careers pretty well show their political leanings. Former Democratic U.S. Rep. John Barrow is challenging incumbent Justice Andrew Pinson for a six-year term.  Republican Gov. Brian Kemp appointed Pinson in 2022 and this is his first time facing election. Three other Supreme Court Justices are running unopposed.

One incumbent on the Georgia Court of Appeals is not running for re-election and the seat is being contested, between Jeff Davis and Tabitha Ponder. In past primaries, Davis has usually voted Republican, and Ponder usually Democratic. Davis runs a general civil and criminal law firm where he often advises government entities on ethics and compliance issues. Ponder is a part-time magistrate judge for Cobb County and runs a mediation practice with Miles Mediation and Arbitration. She has mainly focused on injury law and real estate.

DETAILS

Ballotpedia Sample Ballot Lookup
Know who's running for office in your districts

From the AJC:

Georgia deserves better from Marjorie Taylor Greene, Mike Collins

Excerpts:

IndieDems comment:

Collins’ words were flagrantly racist and insulting. Greene’s brazen publicity stunt distracted the House from doing its real business. Collins and Greene, of course, consider themselves to be committed Christians serving the interests of their constituents,  and so far as IndieDems can determine, no religious or Republican leaders in Georgia has declared otherwise.

FULL STORY

On May 2, pro-Palestinians, including a Black female, staged a demonstration outside the University of Mississippi. A group of White men yelled racial slurs at the Black, insulted her physical features, and called her "Lizzo," the name of a Black rapper with a larger than average girth. One of the men who was screaming at her mimicked the voice and actions of a monkey.

Rep Mike Collins from Georgia a video of the incident on X, and praised it by adding a comment,  "Ole Miss taking care of business." (BlackEnterprise.com posted the link: Ole Miss taking care of business. pic.twitter.com/JiL9hs2pHz .)


A Georgia Republican involved in Jan. 6 attack wants to return to US Capitol — as member of Congress

Chuck Hand is competing to challenge Democratic U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop in the southwest Georgia U.S. House district. He and his wife were convicted of a misdemeanor in  the incident.

Here are the headlines in a reader's inbox on April 25, 2024:

Republicans have no morals, no brains, no shame.

RAWSTORY+4/22/24

Excerpts

FULL STORY

(Excerpts)

FULL STORY

Editor’s note: This survey with its questions is being sent initially to selective clerics of various Christian denominations in Metro Atlanta. Background: No matter how extremist Donald Trump’s lies, demagoguery, character assassination, and dishonesty have debased America’s political dialogue, he can always gain some leeway by claiming they’re all “fake news,” or only different by degree with other politicians. More deeply disturbing is the claim by him and his followers to be, not only Christians, but the truest Christians of all. Trump recently has given this theme more prominence, even to the point of comparing himself to Jesus Christ.  

We non-Republicans look at the words and deeds of Trump, and ask, how in God’s name can people who endorse this toxic brew claim to be Christians? In the cause of civilized debate, I have taken Trump’s explicit words, and stated my position, based on my understanding of Christian principles. Then, I ask the cleric whether he/she agrees or disagrees with my statement. In short: I have made no attack on the clerical recipient.

I am using as a template the copy sent to Senior Pastor Clay Smith of the Johnson Ferry Baptist Church of Marietta. Other copies will go to other pastors, reverends, preachers, priests, bishops, archbishops, etc. I hope others will give wide dissemination to this letter and send it, not only to clerics, but to political allies, friends, colleagues--the general public. No attribution is necessary.  I consider this template to be entirely in the public domain.


Lead Pastor Jeremy Morton
First Baptist Church of Woodstock
1905 Highway 92
Woodstock, GA 30188

Dear Pastor Morton,

I am an 80-year-old native Georgian and a Vietnam combat veteran who spent his 30-year career In Washington, D.C working with a national security agency. Having spent my career trying to serve my country as best as I could, I remain deeply concerned about its future. I give you these credentials to weigh when I state that I believe I base my political decisions on the same use of facts and rational analysis that informed my career as an analyst.

My problem, Pastor Morton, is that I am unable to discern any facts or rational analysis that would lead any American to support Donald Trump for president for the third time in a row. I and Trump’s supporters seem to live in two totally separate dimensions of reality. The facts I look at describe Trump as an immoral, racist, xenophobic, misogynistic, narcissistic, dumb-as-a-brick congenital liar and miscreant who is waging a war against America’s basic moral and democratic values, and who has taken God’s Ten Commandments and Jesus’ Golden Rule, spat on them, ripped them to shreds, tossed them on the ground, and trampled them into the mud.

We normal Americans have become accustomed to hearing Donald Trump speak words that a few years ago would have been considered so repugnant, only a few of them would have ended the political career of anyone who spoke them. Ended almost any career, in fact. We watched in horror as it became clear that an overwhelming majority of Republicans approved the insulting, abusive, character-assassination language as normal.

Many of us early on were disturbed by the extent to which Republicans calling themselves Christians had rallied to Trump’s side. We held out hope that only a minority of misguided extremists would sign on to this prostitution of the message of Jesus Christ. Trump’s defeat in 2020 greatly eased our concern.

But events this year, as Trump pressed his campaign to be re-elected President, has set the alarm bells ringing even louder than in the waning days of his first term. Trump’s words have become markedly more extremist by the week, and the more extremist they become, the louder Republicans applaud. And a new factor has entered the picture that is even more appalling: Trump more than ever is asserting his rhetoric reflects the Christian principles espoused by Jesus Christ.

It seems a good time to engage Christian voices like yours in discovering whether this travesty of their faith is gaining traction, using Trump’s exact words to frame the discussion. I have set up a two-step approach: 1). I express a statement giving my opinion of Trump’s words based on my understanding of the Christian principles espoused by Jesus 2). I ask you whether you agree or disagree with my statement.

Let’s start with some of Trump’s more recent examples:

In March 2024, Trump called his political opponents “vermin”—a term frequently used by Adolf Hitler—and said about migrants “…these are not people. These are animals” and “the country is being poisoned” by migrants.

My statement: Based on my Christian principles, I believe anyone who has called his political opponents “vermin” and called migrants “animals” who are “poisoning” America should not hold public office in the United States.

My question: Based on your Christian principles, Pastor Morton, do you agree or disagree with my statement?

Trump said that the persons who either plead guilty or were convicted by a jury and were jailed over their violent acts during the Jan. 6, 2021 riot at the Capitol are “hostages” and “unbelievable patriots.” (Not criminals). He has said he would consider blanket pardons for some of those charged.

My statement: Based on my Christian principles, I believe these words prove that Donald Trump has utter contempt for the rule of law, a basic American value that upholds the values Christians espouse.

My question: Based on your Christian principles, Pastor Morton, do you agree or disagree with my statement?

Polls show an astonishing number of Christian Republicans who believe Donald Trump is God’s chosen man to save America. According to a prominent political observer, “The result is a religious movement steeped in fanaticism but stripped of virtue. The Christian virtues touted in the New Testament — ‘love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control’ — have been replaced in MAGA Christianity by the very vileness the same passage warned against, including ‘hatreds, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, dissensions’ and ‘factions.’ ”

 My question: Based on your Christian principles, Pastor Morton, do you agree or disagree with that conclusion?

 Trump has an extensive track record that establishes his racism. He:

My statement: Based on my Christian principles, these words and deeds establish Trump as a racist who lives a life contrary to the teachings of Jesus, and who is unfit to hold public office in the United States.

My question: Based on your Christian principles, Pastor Morton, do you agree or disagree with my statement?

In the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election, Trump made up a Big Lie that two Black election workers in Georgia had attempted to illegally manipulate the counting of ballots in the 2020 election. He and his lawyer, Rudolf Giuliani, gave media interviews to publicize the lie. In a telephone conversation with the GA Secretary of State, trying to get him to prevent Georgia's electoral vote going to Biden, Trump referred to one of the women as a “professional vote-scammer and hustler.” Trump’s false accusations subjected the workers to vicious threats and harassment, turning their lives into a living hell.

Trump kept the vile lie about Ruby Freeman and Wandrea Shaye Moss going for three years until a trial exonerated the two, and the jury ordered Giuliani to pay almost $150 million in damages.

My statement: Based on my Christian principles, Trump’s gross mistreatment and flagrant character assassination of two innocent Christians are so alien to the teachings of Jesus Christ, Trump has shown himself not only unfit to be president, he has shown he is unfit to be called a Christian.

My question: Based on your Christian principles, Pastor Morton, do you agree or disagree with my statement?

 Running neck and neck with Trump’s reprehensible treatment of the election workers was another case that demonstrated Trump’s separation from Christian doctrine. In the mid-1990s, Trump sexually assaulted a woman named E. Jean Carroll. As is common in such cases, the victim refused to press charges out of a feeling of shame and the dread of the publicity circus that would ensue, likely ending—according to precedent—with the criminal being found not guilty.

But in 2019, Carroll revealed the assault in the New York magazine as an excerpt from a book she had written. Trump vociferously denied the allegation and called Carroll a liar. Carroll brought defamation claims against Trump. Changes in New York state law in 2022 allowed Carroll to broaden her legal accusations. She filed a new lawsuit seeking damages for the alleged assault itself and for new acts of defamation by Trump.  On May 9, 2023, a federal jury in New York found Trump liable for defamation and sexual abuse and awarded Carroll a total of $5 million in damages.

The jury’s decision did not phase Trump one iota. He immediately proceeded to show what a warped, twisted, and depraved soul he really is by resuming his public insults and defamation of his sex assault victim. Carroll had no alternative but to force him to face a jury one more time, not on the physical assault charges, but to determine how much Trump would have to pay in fines and punitive damages.

During the second trial in January 2024, Trump outside the courtroom kept up a barrage of verbal attacks on his victim, and repeated his accusation that she was lying in a brief personal appearance on the witness stand. His lawyers in the courtroom did the same. The judge several times admonished Trump for exceeding the guidelines for his testimony.

On Jan. 262024, the second jury ordered Trump to pay $83.3 million to Carroll for defaming her.

My statement: Based on my Christian principles of “love they neighbor as thyself,” I believe Trump’s assault on Carroll, followed by his contemptuous treatment of her, renders him unfit to hold public office.

My question: Based on your Christian principles, Pastor Morton, do you agree or disagree with my statement?

Trump over and over again has expressed his fulsome praise for democracy-hating, murderous thugs Vladimir Putin, North Korean leader Kim Jung Un, Chinese President Xi, and Hungarian strongman Orban. Trump has even called Hezbollah, one of the world’s worst terrorist organizations, "very smart."

My statement: Based on my Christian principles, I believe anyone who has praised ruthless dictators who have repudiated America’s basic moral and democratic values should not hold public office in the United States.

My question: Based on your Christian principles, Pastor Morton, do you agree or disagree with my statement?

Last year, Trump suggested that General Mark Milley, the highly respected former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, deserved execution. In 2022, Trump took to social media to call for the termination of the Constitution in order to overturn the 2020 election and “reinstate” him to power. He based his deranged demands on his own false allegations that the 2020 election had been stolen from him.

My statement: Based on my Christian principles, I believe that anyone who has called for the murder of an Army general or for the suspension of the Constitution should not hold public office in the United States.

My question: Based on your Christian principles, Pastor Morton, do you agree or disagree with my statement?

In an interview published on March 18, 2024, Trump said “Jews who support Democrats hate Israel and their religion.” A few hours later, facing mounting criticism from Jewish groups, Mr. Trump’s campaign repeated his incendiary charge, declaring that “Trump is right,” and that the Democratic Party “has turned into a full-blown anti-Israel, antisemitic, pro-terrorist cabal.”

Remarkably, very few Republicans who call themselves Christians have criticized these beyond-outrageous remarks by the man they want to make President of the United States. Their tolerance for warped, twisted, and depraved filth from Trump is bottomless. I ask again: where is there one iota of the teachings of Jesus Christ in these words?

My statement: Based on my Christian principles, I believe anyone who has said “Jews who support Democrats hate Israel and their religion” should not hold public office in the United States.

My question: Based on your Christian principles, Pastor Morton, do you agree or disagree with my statement?

Trump has repeatedly made disparaging remarks about U.S. service members and veterans. On a trip to France in 2018, media reports said Trump had called soldiers “losers” and “suckers” and refused to visit their graves. Former Trump White House chief of staff John Kelly last year confirmed Trump had made these statements. And Trump during his 2016 election campaign and while serving as president repeatedly demeaned the military service of John McCain. After the White House flag was lowered following McCain’s death, Trump ordered it to be restored to full height even while McCain’s memorial services were still underway.

My statement: Based on my Christian principles, I believe that anyone who has insulted our soldiers and demeaned the military service of a hero like John McCain should not hold public office in the United States.

My question: Based on your Christian principles, Pastor Morton, do you agree or disagree with my statement?

Your Assessment of Other Trump Remarks

The Fundamental Issues

The idea that Donald Trump represents Jesus Christ is pure blasphemy, a load of hogwash from the word go. You only have to turn to God’s Ten Commandments to prove the nonsense of equating Trump and Jesus. The Commandments are the solid core of the Judeo-Christian ethos. And Jesus explicitly stated in Matthew 5:17: “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.” Three of those Commandments say:

Donald Trump has lived his adult life in wanton disregard of those three Commandments, as the public record plainly shows. One of his current criminal trials involves his paying hush money to one of the many mistresses with whom he committed adultery. Another of those trials has proven his manipulation of finances in order to steal money. Trump University was an outright scam.

Bearing false witness? Trump is a congenital liar, and a practitioner of the Hitlerian Big Lie, most notably the one about how fraud stole the 2020 election from him. The well-documented Fact Checker’s database shows Trump made 30,573 false or misleading claims as President.

It is equally misleading to claim that Trump’s position on abortion equates him with Jesus. Jesus Christ never said one word about abortion. In fact, web search engines like Biblegateway.com show that the word “abortion” is not to be found in the Bible.

In sum, anyone who uses the Commandment “Thou shalt not kill” to condemn abortion and to try to bolster Trump’s alleged Christian connection is accomplishing exactly the opposite of what they intend. When they use that one Commandment while ignoring Trump’s disregard for the other three, they have defined themselves as the quintessential cafeteria-Christian, the person who goes through  the Bible, picks and chooses what he likes, throws the rest in the dustbin—and proclaims the portions that he likes are the what Christianity is all about.

Trump's recent words simply prove conclusively what he has been demonstrating in one way or other since he announced his presidential bid in 2015: Donald Trump not only has no respect for America's basic democratic and moral values, he would cast them completely aside is he is re-elected president. The "rule of law" and common human decency mean nothing to him. As the public record plainly shows, Trump has nothing but contempt for God's Commandments that forbid lying, committing adultery, and stealing.

It is entirely possible, Pastor Morton, that some members of your congregation will end up joining the ranks of the misguided souls who believe Trump represents Christ on earth. The Bible provides you with the theological evidence to refute such nonsense. But you also have solid secular evidence to draw on: the fact that so many prominent Republicans have broken with Trump and are refusing to support his re-election—including former senior officials in his Administration.

The leader of the pack: former Vice President Mike Pence announced in March that he would not support Trump’s presidential bid. Other formers senior officials who oppose returning Trump to the White House are: former Defense Secretary Mark Esper, former Attorney General William Barr, and former chief of staff John Kelly. And, of course, there’s Liz Cheney. Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) said that Trump’s calling the convicted Jan 6 hostages was “unacceptable”—and just this week, prominent Republican strategist Carl Rove spoke the same words.

I look forward, Pastor Morton, to your response to my letter. I am dumbfounded at the lack of clerical voices denouncing the immoral reprobate Donald Trump. Sometimes I feel transported back to the days of segregation in Georgia, when Blacks and their white civil rights allies were being murdered, beaten, lynched, and blown to bits by bombs placed in churches—and our pulpits remained largely silent, instead of ringing with voices of condemnation.

I will wait a few days for you to absorb and reply before posting this on social media.

Sincerely,

Tom Barksdale

Tom Barksdale
1025 Rose Creek Dr. – Suite 620
Woodstock, GA 30189

Governor Brian Kemp
206 Washington St.
Suite 203, State Capitol
Atlanta, GA 30334

Dear Governor Kemp:

I’m one of your constituents who considers himself well within the range of a normal American. I am an 80-year-old native Georgian and a Vietnam combat veteran who spent his 30-year career in Washington, D.C working with a national security agency. I give you these credentials to weigh when I state that I am a life-long Democrat. I believe I base my political decisions on the same use of facts and rational analysis that informed my career as an analyst.

My problem, Governor, is that I am unable to discern any facts or rational analysis that would lead you to support Donald Trump for president for the third time in a row. You and I seem to live in two totally separate dimensions of reality. The facts I look at describe Trump as an immoral, racist, xenophobic, misogynistic, narcissistic, dumb-as-a-brick congenital liar and miscreant who is waging a war against America’s basic moral and democratic values, and who has taken God’s Ten Commandments and Jesus’ Golden Rule, spat on them, ripped them to shreds, tossed them on the ground, and trampled them into the mud.

And yet, after nine years of this person wantonly displaying all the above characteristics, you gleefully line up to kiss his behind and support his re-election.

(See: Kemp hitching his wagon to the lunatic fringe)

Rather than engage in abstract partisan bickering, I thought the best approach would be to start with Trump’s own words as the basis for discussion. Here are the words spoken by Trump recently which have received Brian Kemp’s stamp of approval:

”If we don’t win this election, I don’t think you’ll ever have another election in this country.” He also said, “If I am not re-elected, there will be a bloodbath for the country,” although he attempted to link the latter statement to what would happen to the automobile industry. Gov. Kemp, how can you approve those words?

Gov. Kemp, how can you approve of Trump saying about migrants “…these are not people. These are animals” and claim that foreign leaders are offloading their prison populations at the southern border, sending gang members and other undesirables to the United States.

The “country is being poisoned” by migrants. “We can be nice about it…But we have people coming in from prisons and jails, long-term murderers, people with sentences that the rest of their lives they’re going to spend in some jail in some country that many people have never even heard of.”

Gov. Kemp, how can you approve of Trump saying that the persons who either plead guilty or were convicted by a jury and were jailed over their violent acts during the Jan. 6, 2021 riot at the Capitol are “hostages” and “unbelievable patriots.” (Not criminals). He has said he would consider blanket pardons for some of those charged. These words prove that Donald Trump and Brian Kemp have utter contempt for the rule of law, don’t they, Governor?

Gov. Kemp, how can you approve of Trump letting it be known that he intends to enlist his 2016 campaign manager and convicted criminal Paul Manafort as a campaign adviser later this year? After resigning his position in the 2016 campaign, Manafort was convicted on bank and tax fraud felonies. He also was accused of hiding millions he made consulting for pro-Russian Ukrainian politicians. He served time in prison before Trump pardoned him in the final days of his presidency.

I don’t recall the position you took, Gov. Kemp, on Trump’s pardon of many of the officials convicted of crimes in his Administration. No other President has so abused the pardoning power like this. Another example of tramping on the rule of law. Perhaps you can enlighten us, Gov. Kemp, on your assessment of Trump’s use of the president’s pardoning power, now that your hero has stated he will misuse it again to free the Jan 6 mobsters.

Now that Trump intends to reappoint this reprobate to a high position, Gov. Kemp, what is your position on the findings of the bipartisan Senate committee that investigated Russian interference in the 2016 elections and concluded that Manafort’s receptivity to Russian outreach was a “grave counterintelligence threat” that had made the 2016 campaign susceptible to “malign Russian influence?” The committee’s alarming findings obviously never caused you to waver in supporting Trump, despite Trump’s ties to Manafort. As of March 21, 2024, Kemp has shown no problem with Trump renewing his ties to this criminal who has strong ties to Russia.

(To understand what Gov. Kemp finds tolerable, see “A review of all the warnings about Paul Manafort from a 2020 bipartisan Senate report)

The Trump-engineered incident, Gov. Kemp, that causes me to question whether you have any semblance of a moral conscience was Trump’s Big Lie alleging that two Georgia election workers engaged in criminal activity to manipulate the ballot count in the 2020 election. Trump joined his lawyer, Rudolf Giuliani, in a publicity campaign to spread the lie, unleashing a torrent of threats and intimidation of the two that turned their lives into a living hell. Trump kept the vile lie about Ruby Freeman and Wandrea Shaye Moss going for three years until a trial exonerated the two, and the jury orders Giuliani to pay almost $150 million in damages.

Brian Kemp never uttered one word of criticism of Trump’s gross mistreatment and flagrant character assassination of two innocent Georgians. Where is one iota of Brian Kemp being guided by Jesus’ teachings in this affair? (My conclusion is based on three Internet searches. If they somehow missed Kemp’s words and deeds, please let me know).

Gov. Kemp, how can you possibly claim loyalty to America’s basic democratic values while supporting for President of the United States someone who over and over again expresses his fulsome praise for democracy-hating thugs Vladimir Putin, North Korean leader Kim Jung Un, Chinese President Xi, and Hungarian strongman Orban. Even Trump’s calling the terrorist organization Hezbollah "very smart," Gov. Kemp, did not alter your commitment to putting this dictator-loving authoritarian back in the White House.  Not a problem, says Gov. Kemp.

(Last year, Trump suggested that General Mark Milley, the highly respected Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, deserved execution. Not a whisper of dissent by you, Gov. Kemp. In 2022, Trump took to social media to call for the termination of the Constitution to overturn the 2020 election and “reinstate” him to power. He based his deranged demand on his own false allegations that the 2020 election had been stolen from him. You have expressed your views on this insanity, Gov. Kemp, by working to re-elect Trump as President, so he can use the power of the presidency to pursue his treasonous agenda).

In an interview published on March 18, Trump said “Jews who support Democrats hate Israel and their religion.” A few hours later, facing mounting criticism from Jewish groups, Mr. Trump’s campaign repeated his incendiary charge, declaring that “Trump is right,” and that the Democratic Party “has turned into a full-blown anti-Israel, antisemitic, pro-terrorist cabal.”

Gee, Governor Kemp. As a Democrat, am I supposed to demean myself by even bothering to refute these beyond-outrageous remarks by the man you want to make President of the United States? Your tolerance, Governor, for warped, twisted, and depraved filth from Donald Trump is bottomless. I ask again: where is there one iota of the teachings of Jesus Christ in these words?

This despicable remark about Jews, Governor, is, in my opinion, about equal to the personal insult you and Trump have hurled in my face. Former Trump White House chief of staff John Kelly last year confirmed that Trump had repeatedly made disparaging remarks about U.S. service members and veterans. On a trip to France in 2018, media reports said Trump had called the soldiers “losers” and “suckers” and refused to visit their graves.

And Trump during his 2016 election campaign and while serving as president repeatedly demeaned the military service of John McCain. After the White House flag was lowered following McCain’s death, Trump ordered it to be restored to full height even while McCain’s memorial services were still underway.

I am bereft of any understanding, Gov. Kemp, of how you and Trump can call me a loser and a sucker for serving in the armed forces of the United States. I accept the reality that my service means nothing to you, Trump, or most other Trumpist Republicans. Your accepting as normal nine years of Trump’s insults, libel, and character assassination of American service members offers a revealing insight into Brian Kemp’s heart and soul—and what an ugly picture it is.

I can only fall back once more on the famous words lawyer John Welch hurled into the face of Joseph McCarthy, the 1950s GOP equivalent of Trump’s lying demagogue, which drove a dagger into McCarthy’s sinister career: “Little did I dream that you could be so reckless and so cruel. Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you (Brian Kemp) left no sense of decency?”

Trump’s words, Governor Kemp, are dangerous, demagogic, despicable, and full of outright lies. They far exceed whatever has been considered as within the mainstream of acceptable political speech in the past, however heated it may have been. Do I really have to explain to Brian Kemp the extremist nature of Trump’s words? Do I have to convince Governor Kemp that Trump is waging a war against America’s basic democratic values, against the Judeo-Christian ethos, against common human decency?

What makes your sycophantic support of a corrupt miscreant like Trump even more astounding, Gov. Kemp, is the fact that so many prominent Republicans have broken with Trump and are refusing to support his re-election—including former senior officials in his Administration. The leader of the pack: former Vice President Mike Pence announced in March that he would not support Trump’s presidential bid. Other formers senior officials who oppose returning Trump to the White House are: former Defense Secretary Mark Esper, former Attorney General William Barr, and former chief of staff John Kelly. And, of course, there’s Liz Cheney. Senator Bill Cassidy  (R-LA) said that Trump’s calling the convicted Jan 6 hostages was “unacceptable.”

Their outspoken opposition speaks to Trump’s manifest flaws and how they are visible to those who know him best. “These former advisers have shared hair-raising observations of Trump’s outbursts, mind-set and personal depravity.” See "Ex-Trump advisers alert voters to his unfitness" for the explicit damning words of Esper, Barr, and Kelly. Former National Security Adviser John Bolton said on CNN: “He doesn’t understand the job, particularly” in regard to national security.

One last plea, Gov. Kemp. Please explain to your constituents how you came to be so much smarter than Mike Pence, Mark Esper, William Barr, John Bolton, John Kelly, Bill Cassidy, and Liz Cheney—combined.

Look forward to receiving your response.

Sincerely,

Tom Barksdale