I hope that we can speak honestly. The President did not address the nation yesterday. Instead, he delivered impromptu remarks to a group of local supporters who had assembled on the opposite side of the street from his waiting motorcade. There was no lectern or teleprompter present and the SUVs and emergency vehicles parked in front of the building were not moved to improve the view from those who had gathered to see him.
He could have just waved to the crowd, hopped in the awaiting SUV with the First Lady, and headed on his way. Instead, he stepped up on a makeshift platform, grabbed a hand-held microphone and thanked them, told them that he loved them and said he was there to help and “take care” of them. These are the actions and words of an empathetic man directed to the locals gathered; not the nation.
The crowd cheered loudly and he acknowledged their presence — as any empathetic person would — by referring to them as a “great crowd”. He thanked the Governor, Senators Cruz and Cornyn, and the other unnamed officials who flanked him and commended them for their cooperative efforts. After closing his remarks with an appropriate tribute to the will of the great people of Texas, he dropped the microphone and hoisted the Texas state flag to the raucous approval of the crowd. It was a proud moment that created iconic imagery for those members of the media that were present to witness it.
There is a segment of our population, including major media personalities and politicians, that possess extreme hatred for our President. Irrespective of his motives or performance, we now expect these ‘haters’ to dissect and distort his every action and word in an effort to malign him. Every President during my lifetime has experienced critical opposition but I have never witnessed such extreme fits of rage resulting from otherwise innocuous events. This conversation we are having is another unfortunate example of the banality of their contempt.