Dark City

After a chaotic start to the Republican National Convention, Donald Trump officially became the GOP candidate for President last Tuesday.  Conservatives such as GOP strategist Ana Navarro were quick to celebrate the historic moment:  “Tonight, a part of me feels like my puppy died.”

Which is how I felt by the end of Trump’s acceptance speech on Thursday night.

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Credit: John Moore/Getty Images

It was as if the decision to reach out to independent voters was shelved to focus on strengthening the core base, resulting in a four-day shit show of hate and culminating in an acceptance speech that could have been written by Andrew Kevin Walker.

Over the course of the convention, only a handful of speakers offered anecdotes humanizing Trump beyond a living embodiment of a South Park episode.

The touting of Trump’s policies took a backseat to the hatred for Hillary Clinton, political correctness, immigrants, refugees, the Black Lives Matter movement and the LGBTQ community.

Monday opened with the #NeverTrump movement making a (failed) last stand to ultimately unbind delegates from their state results and ended in a plagiarism controversy involving potential future First Lady Melania Trump’s speech, to which the campaign wouldn’t resolve until 36 hours later.

Tuesday’s theme, Make America Great Again, was seemingly abandoned by nearly every speaker. Rather than discuss the presumptive nominee’s economic policies, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie presented an indictment against Hillary Clinton to an all-too-enthusiastic crowd. In a slot opening for soap star Kimberlin Brown, former GOP presidential candidate frontrunner Dr. Ben Carson gave a speech that would make Charles Manson shake his head in disbelief when he tied Hillary Clinton to satanism.

Wednesday’s focus on the Trump policies which would make America a “beacon of progress and opportunity” went unheard as Texas Senator Ted Cruz reminded the Quicken Loans Arena this is a party divided when he refused to endorse Trump for president.

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Credit: CNN

The crowd reaction was so hostile to Cruz, CNN’s Manu Raju tweeted how Cruz’s wife, Heidi, had to be escorted off the convention floor by security.

Holding the much coveted slot before the GOP presidential candidate’s speech on Thursday, the candidate’s own daughter, Ivanka Trump, introduced a warmth to what had previously been a very cold stage.

Lovingly recalling making buildings with her legos as a child in her father’s office while her dad orchestrated the construction of real properties, Ivanka painted a Norman Rockwell-like picture we can all envision.

However, any warm sentiment was quickly fleeting when she began describing a man we can’t recognize in Donald Trump:

“He is color blind and gender neutral.”

Well, unless you’re a federal judge of Mexican descent or a woman.

Trump infamously lashed out against federal Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is presiding over a current lawsuit brought against the for-profit Trump university.

Pointing to his plans of building a wall along the border of Mexico, Trump believed that Indiana- born Judge Curiel would not give his case a fair ruling based on his heritage.

Trump’s language was condemned by leaders on both sides of the aisle, including House Speaker Paul Ryan, who referred to Trump’s comments as a “textbook definition” of racism.

In April, Trump didn’t sound “gender neutral” when he credited Clinton’s lead in the polls to one attribute:

“Franky, if Hillary Clinton were a man, I don’t think she’d get 5 percent of the vote.  The only thing she’s got going is the women’s card..”

As Ivanka continues her speech, she finally gets into his policies:

“…he will focus on making quality childcare affordable and accessible for all.”

Unfortunately for her, they aren’t her father’s policies. Trump has rarely discussed the subject of affordable childcare and as of this writing, doesn’t even acknowledge the issue on his official site.

When asked about the subject of affordable childcare last November during an Iowa town hall meeting, Trump offered this solution:

“You know it’s not expensive for a company to do it, you need one person or two people and you need some blocks, you need some swings, you need some toys.”

I imagine this is just as detailed a response as when asking a Petco employee what you need when buying a new dog.

Although Trump doesn’t have a plan regarding affordable childcare, she does:

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Credit: Elise Amendola/Associated Press

In May, Clinton proposed a cap to childcare costs at 10% of a family’s income. Clinton also introduced a new initiative called RAISE (Respect And Increased Salaries for Early Childhood Educators), which would offer funds to states to increase the pay of child care workers.

During her speech, Ivanka continued to advocate for the policy positions of Hillary Clinton… I mean, her father:

“He will fight for equal pay for equal work, and I will fight for this too, right along side of him.”

Does he know this?

Although Trump told hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski he supported women getting equal pay for the same job during an August 2015 appearance on “Morning Joe,” he refused to commit to the cause with a policy simply adding “It’s very hard to say what is the same job.”

I’m starting to get the impression this guy isn’t prepared for the presidency.

In contrast, Hillary Clinton has vowed to support passing the Paycheck Fairness Act; a bill which Senate Republicans blocked twice in 2014.

Making a far less dramatic entrance than he did on Monday night, Donald Trump took the stage and proceeded to give a speech that had every fact checker earning overtime hours.

Early in the speech, Trump was quick to blame the Obama administration for reversing “decades of process made in bringing down crime,” even though overall crime has gone down during President Obama’s tenure.

“Homicides last year increased by 17 percent in America’s fifty largest cities. That’s the largest increase in 25 years.”

Trump pulled the 17% number from a Washington Post study. What he omits from the same study is that “public safety has been improving for two decades” and that there were twice as many homicides in 1991 compared to 2015.

Although the study is unable to pinpoint a specific reason for last year’s uptick, multiple theories are discussed. One you won’t hear Trump repeat on the RNC stage is the possibility of “relaxed gun laws in some states” making firearms more accessible.

Throughout the night, Trump presented no context to the statistics he used, and more importantly, offered no detailed solutions to the problems he discussed.

The GOP presidential candidate presented a constant flow of nightmarish rhetoric, to the point I couldn’t tell if he was giving an acceptance speech or summoning the deadites from the Necronomicon.

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Credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Trump turned the fear mongering up to “11” during his one hour and fifteen minute speech, warning his audience of millions there was no screening process for Syrian refugees (there is) and Iran was on the path to a nuclear weapon (they aren’t).

Multiple times Trump mentioned the “attacks on our police,” but never the names of the many unarmed black men we’ve seen killed on camera.

Last week a major political party nominated a demagogue for President and ratified a party platform described by the Log Cabin Republicans’ President Gregory T. Angelo as “the most anti-LGBT Platform in the Party’s 162-year history.”

The platform also:

  • Recognizes pornography as a public health crisis. 92 Americans lose their lives to Pornhub each day. Wait…no that’s gun violence.
  • Opposes laws which “restrict magazine capacity or ban the sale of the most popular and common modern rifle.”
  • Supports a “human life amendment” to the Constitution to undermine abortion rights.
  • Calls for the defunding of Planned Parenthood.
  • Advocates for the teaching of the bible in public schools.
  • Supports Donald Trump’s wall among the southern border.
  • Advocates for multiple anti-LGBTQ policies, including the debunked, bigoted belief that children raised by heterosexual parents are healthier than those raised by same-sex parents.

When former Texas Gov. Rick Perry was asked at the convention why he would support Trump now, a man he once referred to as “a cancer on conservatism,” he told CNN:

“The central focus for me is the Supreme Court.”

There is only one way to stop Trump from getting the presidency and determining the make up of the Supreme Court for a generation:

Vote for Hillary Clinton.

If you’re voting for Jill Stein or Gary Johnson in “protest” of the DNC this November, you are not throwing away your vote. You’re giving it to Donald Trump.

You may feel you have a moral superiority after casting a vote for Stein in Novmeber, but you will have effectively killed the progressive movement you were fighting for in the process.

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