Donald Trump’s presidency isn’t looking any better: 6 despicable things the president-elect did last week – Salon
It has been one of the longest weeks in human history and the Donald Trump presidency has not even begun yet. Any notion that reasonable, well-intentioned people should give him a chance — hey, maybe he was just kidding about all that hateful, bigoted stuff he spewed on the campaign trail — was immediately dispelled. One of his first official acts was to name Steve Bannon, the mastermind of the “alt-right” fake-news website Breitbart, to chief propagandist. The president-elect dodged the media, regained control of his Twitter account and proceeded to confirm all of our worst fears about him.
If it was not already clear, Trump plans to surround himself with sycophantic yes-men who share his views and will gleefully set about laying waste to civil liberties and justice. Also, his unelected children will be playing major roles in the new White House, it appears, while also running his businesses.
We won, he and his team have told anyone who disagrees with them. They have every plan to claim all the spoils. Here is a partial list of both the horrors and the mere affronts to decency Trump has visited upon us this week.
1. He tapped Jeff Sessions as U.S. attorney general.
Sessions has been rewarded for being one of the earliest lap dogs for Trump with one of the most powerful positions in the country, attorney general. The two men share a deep love of racist policing, hatred of civil rights and desire to roll back the clock to approximately the 1950s. That would place us well before the Voting Rights Act, the Civil Rights Act, Roe v. Wade and nationwide legalization of gay marriage. Sessions would also be perfectly positioned to undo some of the gains made during the Obama administration to reverse the worst effects of the 1994 Omnibus Crime bill that rained mass incarceration down on vast portions of the black and Latino populations. The two share a hatred and demonization of marijuana; Sessions once hilariously joked that he liked the KKK until he heard they smoked weed. Another piece of common ground, both hate immigrants, with Sessions saying in 2006 that no one from the Dominican Republic has anything of value to contribute to the United States.
Alabama Sen. Sessions was deemed too openly racist to be a federal judge by Senate Republicans in 1986 after President Ronald Reagan nominated the then-U.S. attorney from Alabama. Former colleagues gave devastating testimony about Sessions’ blatant racism. But Senate Republicans are not what they used to be.
There’s no evidence that the years have dimmed Sessions’ racist views, which are apparently right in line with his new boss man. On Friday, Sessions praised Trump’s demand for the death penalty for the Central Park Five in 1989, saying it shows Trump has always been a “law and order” guy. The five men have been fully exonerated by DNA evidence and shown to have been victims of police railroading. Despite all this inconvenient truth, Trump has continued to stand by his earlier bloodlust, and now the nation’s likely top prosecutor has praised him for it.
That is some very twisted law and order.
2. His surrogate floated the Muslim registry idea and justified it by citing one of the most shameful eras in American history.
One of the more terrifying campaign ideas Trump floated was the idea of a registry for Muslims in this country. Undaunted by the comparison between this and treatment of Jews in Nazi Germany, the president-elect has made it clear that this awful breach of human rights and act of outright religious persecution is still very much a possibility.
Carl Higbie, a prominent Trump backer and spokesman for a major super PAC that backed him, laid out the legal justification for this atrocity on Wednesday to a horrified Megyn Kelly. Higbie’s argument was that the mass internment of Japanese Americans during World War II was a “precedent” for Trump’s Muslim registry idea, and therefore a Muslim registry has “constitutional muster.”
Kelly tried in various ways to express her utter shock and dismay that Japanese internment camps were being used as some sort of positive example of how the United States should behave today.
Higbie may just be a Trump-loving supporter with no official role, but word is that the Muslim registry is definitely being considered. A day earlier, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who is an actual member of Trump’s transition team, said Trump’s advisers were discussing whether to send him a formal proposal for a national registry of immigrants and visitors from Muslim countries. Kobach, whose other claim to fame is crafting am Arizona law making it legal for police to profile Latinos, was said to be in line for the attorney general position. Now he’ll have to wait for another plum position, like czar of immigration.
There is every indication that Trump has great respect for fellow hotheads, as long as they are sufficiently sycophantic and Islamophobic. Retired General Michael Flynn, Trump’s truly frightening pick for national security adviser, perfectly fits the bill.