When people talk to me about Trump, what they don't seem to get is that there's two aspects of my support for the man.
The first is the practical, here-and-now dividends I think Trump's existence in the race is paying in the culture wars. As someone who has spent a good chunk of his life watching 'conservatives' cower in fear of the dreaded 'racist' label - leading to act upon act of groveling, whimpering, and betrayal - I regard Trump's candidacy as a windfall. Not a potential windfall, should he win office. A real, honest-to-God bolt of electricity that has made given life and energy to nationalists and cultural defenders. The effect Trump is having on discussions about the border, about nationalism, about immigration, about #blacklivesmatter, is tremendous. Even if Trump is lying about every position he holds, even if he's just some kind of Manchurian candidate who is going to turn into Bernie Sanders if he wins, the value of his willingness to stand up defiantly against everyone from the media to the GOP establishment is incredible.
But the second reason? I regard him as a worthy gamble. Look - I'm not so naive as to think that Trump is a hardcore right-wing nationalist who was only pretending to be a left-of-the-road New Yorker all these years. It's a nice fantasy, but it's not something I'd bet much money on. People say 'Trump is a salesman - a good one! He'll say anything to get elected. But he's not guaranteed to do what he says!' think they're selling me a reason not to endorse him, but instead they're actually coming close to a major reason I support him: that he seems like a political wildcard.
I know what I'm going to get with Hillary Clinton. Wall Street servitude, leftist social issues and appeasement to an increasingly delirious SJW and corrupted culture. Not interested.
However, the GOP isn't much better. Remember that Trump rose to prominence when Jeb! was supposed to be the anointed candidate, and Rubio was considered to be the backup plan. Oh boy, a State of the Union address probably delivered in Spanish, amnesty, and yet more betrayal on every issue I consider worthwhile. On the upside, I'd be sure to see tax cuts on multinational corporations that do things like demand states veto their religious rights bills or forbid the presence of a confederate flag in their stores, and nominating SCOTUS justices like those famous GOP nominees, Kennedy and Souter.
How can I pass that up? Goodness. Yet somehow, I find it in me to pass.
Some people are bewildered about this, and take two tacks with me.
First is, 'What Trump is saying is racist. He's making us look bad. He's ruining the GOP brand. This is going to hurt our outreach with hispanics and blacks and women, running a guy like this.' To this I can simply say, nothing he's said is racist, and this kind of perpetual fear - and this belief that the only route available is amnesty for illegals, open borders, and cultural surrender on every point - no longer is something I'll entertain. Been there, done that. If you tell me that the American right has no power or will to do anything but roll over, but hopefully pass some tax cuts on the way, then 'let it burn' becomes to me the moderate position. 'Pour gas on the fire' will be my preference, and President Sanders can work his magic.
Second is, 'I'd rather at least get 3% of what I want with a President Rubio than 0% with a President Hillary.' This is usually offered up as the wise, crafty approach: 3% > 0%, ergo, this is the path of wisdom. Once again: if these are the scraps we're fighting over, then to hell with the project. And don't tell me we're laying the foundations for future successes by being pragmatic now. I lived through the GOP holding the senate, the house, and the presidency at once, and it holds two of those things now. Nothing of lasting value was accomplished, and it's because what I regard as valuable, the GOP kingmakers regard as toxic.
Again, no thanks. With Trump, I get to roll the dice, and I pick up some nice cultural victories on the way - something which actually may result in people building upon them, with a bit of luck. If the modern GOP is destroyed in the process, well - little of value will have been lost. In the meantime, I'm starting to like this recent turn of events, where ideas like 'American interests come before foreign ones', 'Illegal immigrants should be sent packing', 'Blacklivesmatter is a farce' and more are said on TV and defended openly, rather than whispered on blogs. I think I'd rather live my life standing by these values - even if they tarnish that precious GOP 'brand' - rather than pretending that, good golly, what would really benefit this country is a few million Syrians and 20 million H1-B visas.