The law has many concepts useful for the non-legal world. One of my favorites is "stipulate." When opposing sides in a case agree on a certain fact, or set of facts, they can stipulate those facts, meaning—if I understand correctly—that they don't have to argue over them.
"We will stipulate that my client was indeed in the store the morning it was robbed, but will show that he left without taking anything."
Privately, I stipulate situations because I don't want to belabor them. Donald Trump is a liar, a bully and a fraud. This is clear to everyone it is ever going to be clear to, and anyone who doesn't see that by now never will. There is no need to wave around various examples of new lies, new examples of his beating up on the weak, fresh instances of chicanery. We get it. We've gotten it. We're going to get it.
Stipulating this allows a person thoroughly disgusted with our nation's dive into shame to divert his gaze from the oozing and grotesque horror unfolding hourly in Washington or, on the weekends, Florida. There is life outside of Trump's little shoebox diorama of a world, and I want to look at that.
There is a risk that the president will be tuned out so thoroughly, that the utter wrongness of his words and actions will be muted to a degree that is dangerous. We don't want to risk accepting his behavior by silence. We don't want to ignore the horror, repetitive though it may be. Sometimes we have to force ourselves to look, on general principles. As a patriotic duty.
Thus let me post a trio of his tweets Sunday, coming to the defense of a Fox host who was canned after suggesting that Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar couldn't be a good American because she wears a hijab. To read the president's tweets in chronological order, start from the bottom.
This, 48 hours after 50 Muslims were slaughtered in New Zealand by a white nationalist who praised Trump before committing his atrocity.
Judge Pirro was a Fox ranter—I can't comment on her because I've never seen her in action. But she seems to be among those mirroring Trump's thoughts back to him. Notice how the president of the United States calls for a TV host to be re-instated—itself a mile beneath the dignity of the presidency in normal times—then blames Fox News dumping her on the "Radical Left Democrats"—if they had control over Fox, one assumes the network would be sucked into the gaping hellmouth that opens up under it.
In the second, a common theme: noticing the hatred they foment, against Muslims, against Hispanics, against whatever victim they've got their sights on at the moment, is "political correctness," a pearl-clutching collapse on the fainting couch of over-refinement.
"Be strong & prosper, be weak & die." Where did he get that? It sounds like a snippet of Klingon philosophy that lodged in the Trumpian brain after watching "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan."
And the third tweet. "Your competitors are jealous." Envy is a major motivating factor in the Trump world, second perhaps only to fear, so of course they see it everywhere they look. So many times I've heard from readers who can't wrap their head around opposing Trump for the aforementioned lies, bullying and fraud—it's just crrrrazy to them—nor perceive his valueless, pitiable life, but, dazzled by the gold-plated excess he wallows in, declare that those who oppose him are just "jealous" of his lux lifestyle. Like being Donald Trump were not a fate I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy.
See why Trump is best ignored? Because if you don't, you have to think about this shit. And honestly, we haven't even parsed half of his grotesquely petty and sickening tweets on Sunday. With more certain to come today. I suppose we have to look, as punishment, for being part of a nation that permitted this. Then we have to look away. It's heartbreaking.