The Honored Adversary: Listening To George F. Will

The Honored Adversary: Listening To George F. Will

Okay. Let’s be upfront about this. We don’t like him. We never really did.

We mean, George F. Will, the conservative writer who, somehow, gets a column in that left of center newspaper, The Washington Post. We don’t like his right wing opinions. We don’t like his nasty little button-down shirts. We don’t like his anal-retentive little rimless glasses. We just don’t like him. Period.

That said…

Well, sometimes he gets it. Last week, on 13 Oct, 2017, his column in the Post was titled, “Sinister figures lurk around our careless president,” and in it, Will looks very long and very hard at some of the people floating about the Orange One in the White House—people like Stephen Miller, currently a senior advisor of the Trump Administration. His conclusion? That even now the Oval Office is unnaturally influenced by men and (presumably) women who are pretty close to being overt fascists.

Or, if not fascist, then they are (to use Will’s own term) “Pre-Lincoln,” in that they envision an America in which citizenship is determined not by one’s allegiance to an ideal of an “American creed” of liberty, equality, and opportunity but rather by the color of one’s skin and the origins of one’s family. Thus, Jeffrey Dahmer would be an acceptable citizen of that, pre-Lincolnesque America, in spite of the fact that he was eating people, because he was a white male. Maya Angelou, in spite of her accomplishments, would not be because she wasn’t…

And, he concludes, the fact that such Pre-Lincolnesque people are around the president should terrify us.

Admittedly, at this point, a liberal or progressive would be quite justifying in saying, “this is what we’ve been saying all along. What took him so long to figure it out?” And maybe there’s something to that objection.

But, still, consider. Will, a man on the Right, is saying these things. He is taking a position with which we can agree, and he is speaking with force and intelligence.

So…maybe…

Those of us who are Liberals, and Progressives, and Greens, and Christian Democrats, and Social Democrats, need to think about that. Maybe, we need to wonder.

Can we make common cause with men and women like Will? Whom we may not like, and who have very different ideas from our own?

But who agree with us in one essential, all-important thing. To wit, that Trump and those shadowy, sinister figures behind him…

Are a deadly threat to all we jointly…left, right, and center…hold dear.

And can we then, somehow, work together?

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