Most of the public’s attention recently has been focused on contempt for Donald Trump’s horrible treatment of women. A few Trumpets [Trump Idiots] have tried their desperate best to pretend that, “bad boy talk,” or, “locker room banter,” from eleven years ago is irrelevant, but the vast majority seems to know better. 1) We understand the difference between impolite remarks about a woman’s anatomy and bragging about how fun it is to molest women. 2) We have heard enough of Trump’s reckless disregard for others – from Mexicans and Muslims to women and POWs – to know that these comments from eleven years ago could have been made eleven minutes ago. Trump’s character is well known, deeply entrenched, and unlikely to change.
There is another story, however, that highlights an even sicker aspect of Trump’s soul and hasn’t received its fair share of attention. More than two decades ago a woman was brutally raped in New York’s Central Park while jogging at night. The woman was white and the five young men arrested for the crime were all black and Latino. Under pressure from the police and a disregard for the rights of the accused, all five defendants cracked and confessed to their involvement in the rape. They were later convicted based only on these false confessions. Many people were caught up in this emotional moment and their worst elements came to the surface in calls for something to be done. Donald Trump took out a full page newspaper ad calling for the return of the death penalty in New York and chose to make himself a very public face of the angry (white) body politic.
Documentarian Ken Burns captured the hysteria and tragedy of this case masterfully in The Central Park Five (2013), which is currently playing on Amazon Prime. I say “tragedy” because we now know beyond any reasonable doubt that all five defendants were wrongfully convicted, serving between five and thirteen years in prison, until DNA evidence completely exonerated them and the actual assailant, a convicted murder and serial rapist, was found. You would think this would be a cautionary tale and men like Trump would learn not to rush to judgement or let themselves be fueled by hate, but self reflection is clearly not The Donald’s strong suit. To this day he refuses to accept the facts and thinks the $40,000,000 New York paid out to these greatly abused citizens was an injustice. Donald’s judgements (i.e. feelings) are the only thing that matters in Donald’s mind.
When Trump speaks of, “Law and Order,” remember this case and realize what he is really saying. In another time, when you could get away with that kind of thing, he would have been the head of the lynch mob raining “justice” down upon these boys. His, “stop and frisk,” mentality is not only the wrong answer to our current problems, it is a Yuge reason why we have those problems in the first place. There is no intellectually honest way to spin it. This racist, sexist, buffoon of a conman, exemplifies everything that has held America back from being as great as it can possibly be.