For a long stretch I tried to avoid blogging about Donald Trump. He thrives on attention, positive or negative, and I vowed I wouldn’t give him what he wants. Ignoring attention-getting behavior is a natural for teachers. I thought it would be effective in the political arena, too.
But ignoring the behavior in the hopes that it would go away doesn’t always work. Sometimes, without additional strategies, behavior worsens when ignored. That’s what’s happened here – until recently.
As long as he was getting away with it, Trump continued to spout his hateful rhetoric. He encouraged his followers to “knock the crap out of” anyone who might throw a tomato at a rally. If his followers got arrested, he promised to pay their legal fees. Trump also said he wanted to “punch (a reporter) in the face”.
Protesters in Chicago decided that ignoring Trump’s behavior wasn’t working, so they gathered in the streets. And gathered peacefully, too. These people didn’t fight violence with violence; they showed they didn’t support Trump’s bigotry by exercising their right to peaceably assemble. And when the man himself decided not to appear, the tens of thousands cheered.
It’s time, people. It’s time to recognize that this man is dangerous and his bigotry and bias are not going away unless we take action. We need to speak up and let the nation and the world know that this man’s behavior is not acceptable. His hate speech is not acceptable. His violent attitude is not acceptable.
And we’re not going to ignore the Donald’s behavior anymore.