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An essay donated by Contributing Editor Susan Humphreys:

Donald Trump: His Own Worst Enemy or Best Advocate?

Part 18

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This essay is one of a group of essays on President Trump's activities during the Fall of 2017

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Webmaster's comment:

The following essay takes a dim view of President Trump. It might well upset readers who have a high opinion of him. Normally, this site presents all sides to each topic. If you would like to present your views, please write them down and submit them to us for review. See the visitors essays' guide.

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I began to pity President Trump this week. The poor guy just can’t get a break. He keeps shooting himself in the foot and he can’t stop himself.

The debacle in late 2017-OCT was over a call he made to a soldiers widow. When he was criticized by a Congress woman for his insensitivity in handling the call, he struck back. Then General Kelly stepped in to try to calm the waters with a truly moving speech only to destroy all he had gained by making false accusations against the Congresswoman.

I tried to imagine what it must be like to be a person that feels so insecure, so impotent, so small, that the only way he can build himself up is by tearing others down.

I tried to imagine what it must be like to be a person that feels so insecure, so impotent, so small that he constantly has to tell the world how great he is. How he is better than everyone who came before him.

I have begun to wonder if perhaps the man is dyslexic? Or did he just struggle to learn how to read? Could that be why he doesn’t like to read and demands that his briefings be short and full of graphics? He was born at a time when dyslexia wasn’t understood and children were called dumb or lazy for their inability to read. Rich kids, like Trump, would have been automatically passed ahead each year whether they did the work or passed the tests or not. Dyslexics learned to compensate for their problems by cheating or by using charm. Some even learned how to at least partly overcome their disability and to be able to read well enough to get by.

I have begun to wonder what he must have been like as a child? Was he smaller than others? Did he mature slower than others? Did he come from a dysfunctional family? Was he raised by a series of nannies or servants and never got the love a child craves from his parents? I’ve begun to wonder what happened to make him the man he is today? And I have begun to pity him for being that man.

Extreme narcissism is a compensating measure: you love yourself more to compensate for the love you don’t get from others. Bullying is a defensive measure. Bragging and boasting are both compensating and defensive measures. The bullying, the bragging turn people off, drive people away, and create the need for greater narcissism.

Some call the man pathetic. Some call the man deranged. Some call the man a fool. I can see that he is all of those things and so I call the man sad. What a waste of human potential. And that doesn’t take into consideration what he is doing to this nation and its people. I’m just thinking here about what he has done and continues to do to himself.

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The news this week was filled with pictures of destruction. ISIS (a.k.a. Daesh) was pushed out of the last of the cities they controlled. The pictures showed what was left of those cities. I couldn’t help but wonder if the winners realized how much they lost in order to win. I’m not sure there are any winners there. How sad, what a waste. Lives lost, infrastructure destroyed, money that could have been spent improving the lives of the people spent in destroying their lives and their city.

But then I thought what must it be like to be a person that joins ISIS? And then I thought they must be similar, a more extreme version for sure, but still similar to the Evangelicals that signed the Nashville Statement last month or the Catholics that signed the Filial Correction to Pope Francis.

During the election campaign a year ago I began to wonder what it must be like to be a person that supports Trump? A person that is willing to overlook his character flaws for the promises he made or the chance to gain political power over one’s enemies. What must it be like to believe that winning is worth any cost?

There are two things in this world that can’t be bought at any price. They aren’t bestowed as gifts or awarded to you. You don’t inherit them from a parent. They have to be earned. Once earned, no one can take them away from you. You however can lose them, discard them, throw them away. Once lost, you will probably never earn them back. These two things are Honor and Integrity. Is what some folks have lost in honor, in integrity, in self-respect and respect from others worth what they think they have gained?

Last month an article on the Religious News website from Martin E. Marty of the Martin Marty Center at the University of Chicago Divinity School was entitled "Freud and other ‘god-killers’ are here to stay." 1 I wrote Mr. Marty a letter and pointed out that it wasn’t Freud, Nietzsche, Marx or Darwin who killed or were killing God. It was Christians themselves, with their fear, their hate, their intolerance of the "other", their dislike of all of those that aren’t just like them. Why would anyone want to become a Christian and become just like them?

I must add a line here. I know all Christians aren’t haters, all Christians aren’t intolerant. BUT the ones that are, have often become the public face of Christianity.

What must it be like to be afraid of change, to be afraid of strangers to the point that your fears turn to hate of change, hate of strangers, hate of those who aren’t afraid of either.

What must it be like to be afraid of science, or history because they might expose the errors in your theology?


What must it be like to be a person that hates?

  • have your fears turn to hate for the scientist, or historian or the person who respects both?

  • be a person that shouts hate filled words at women entering Planned Parenthood clinics?

  • be a person that hates homosexuals, and feels the need to deny them their rights as human beings, as free citizens of this nation?

  • be a business owner that refuses to serve a gay couple?

  • be a White Supremacist, so insecure in your own skin that you have to attack others (verbally and sometimes physically) for theirs?

  • think that guns make you tough or stronger or more powerful? Are those people so insecure, so frightened, so impotent that the only way they can make themselves feel strong is by having a bigger arsenal than their neighbors? The practitioners of Yoga and the Martial Arts teach us that TRUE POWER comes from self-discipline, self-control, self-restraint, self-motivation, self-respect. Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount said blessed are the Meek for they shall inherit the earth. He didn’t bless the war mongers, or the bullies, or the haters.

  • be the type of person that thinks violence (verbal or physical) will solve their problems? That violence will make them forget their own shortcomings?

  • be they type of person that thinks violence (verbal or physical) or hate, will cover up and help them forget the type of person they have become?

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I cast the I Ching this morning and cast #27 Nourishment: "The superior man controls his mouth, what comes out of it and what he puts into it."

Does that remind you of one of Jesus sayings: "It isn’t what you put into your mouth that defiles you but what comes out of it." Matthew 15:11.

The "change lines" of Nourishment are valuable to consider.

  • If line 1 is a nine it reminds you "You have everything you need, yet are filled with resentment. You envy those who have encumbered their lives with more than you have."

  • If line 2 is a six: " You are able to provide nourishment for yourself, yet you continue to accept it from other sources." I think there are folks that can only get nourishment from other sources, (sometimes only by tearing down others) they don’t know how, or are so insecure they can’t find nourishment within themselves.

  • If line 3 is a six: " The man’s actions inhibit proper nourishment." Trump keeps undoing anything he gains with his tweets.

It is certainly easier to blame the Immigrant, the homosexual, the Atheist, the scientist or historian, the intellectual, fake news, the "other" -- the one who isn’t like you -- for YOUR problems. But the reality is the trouble, the source of your problems lies within you.

As Pogo once said "We have met the enemy and he is us."

What must it be like to be your own worst enemy -- and to either not realize it, or to try to ignore it because you know you can’t restrain yourself -- rather than becoming your own best advocate?

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This topic continues in the next essay

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Reference used:

The following information source was used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlink is not necessarily still active today.

  1. Martin E. Marty, "Freud and other ‘god-killers’ are here to stay," Religion News Service, 2017-OCT-04, at: http://religionnews.com/

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How you may have arrived here:

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Author: Contributing Editor Susan Humphreys
Originally posted on: 2017-NOV-11

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