Reply to Republicans | Letters

I fully agree with Martha Fuller’s comments (see “In response to Republicans” guest column) about the “Republican Call for Tolerance” as published on Aug. 30. Nobody on these islands should be subjected to the invective and threats that Republicans experienced at their county fair booth.

And I support her questioning their “wisdom” in displaying a cardboard cutout of the president at their booth when he is held in such low esteem by the great majority of citizens in these islands — who in 2016 voted overwhelmingly against him. Their conscious choice obviously provoked the reaction they deplore.

What did they expect? This is a man their own prominent party member, part-time Orcas Islander Robert Gates — who served as Defense Secretary under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama — called “stubbornly ignorant about the world and how to lead our country and government” as well as “unqualified and unfit to be commander in chief.”

His record during his first seven months of office has only underscored this denunciation. As tweeter-in-chief, he has disparaged women, immigrants, Muslims Latinos and gays, while refusing to condemn the actions of white supremacists and racists — one of whom murdered an opposition protestor and injured many others in Charlottesville.

As Gates stated last September in the Wall Street Journal, this man is unfit to lead our nation. His deeply polarizing statements and actions, supported now by but a third of its citizens, have divided the United States like it has not been divided since the Civil War.

So championing his “leadership” with a cardboard cutout is tantamount to sticking their fingers in the eyes of people they try to call “neighbors.” San Juan Republicans should own their own contribution to what ensued, not protest it.

And politics should ideally be about ideas — not blind allegiance to a hopelessly flawed television personality largely bereft of them.

Michael Riordan