“You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore.” – William Faulkner
Over the last few weeks, ideological conservatives have separated themselves into two groups: the pro-Trumps, and the anti-Trumps. The divide between the two groups has become so stark that people are forgetting there are other options. People on both sides have begun to think in black and white, creating a false dilemma. You’re either all in for Trump, or he makes your blood boil so intensely it makes your skin hot to the touch.
One particular focus of the anti-Trumps has been Ann Coulter. For quite some time, Ann Coulter has professed her belief that immigration is the defining issue of our time. She’s made clear that if we don’t fix the immigration crisis, nothing else matters, because immigration is the antecedent of all other political issues. She even wrote a book about it (which I recommend reading. It’s excellent).
As bold as Trump has been regarding immigration, one can understand why Ann Coulter would chant “Go Trump, go!” on a regular basis. After Trump released his immigration plan, Coulter tweeted the following:
The greatest political document since the Magna Carta – http://t.co/l7nq8gN7i5
— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) August 16, 2015
The reaction I saw on Facebook was incredible. People called Coulter an idiot, a racist, and slung endless and quite lame ad hominem attacks at her. What these people don’t understand is that Ann Coulter is smarter than all of them. What’s she’s doing in supporting Trump so vociferously is a kind of behavioral hyperbole.
As far as Coulter is concerned, immigration is the issue that precedes all other issues; if we don’t fix immigration, everything else falls apart. If we grant amnesty, and if we continue to allow thousands of illegals to cross the border without reprisal, what follows? Amnestied illegals will be given voting rights, they will block-vote Democrat, and conservatives will never again win a national election. Even Chris Matthews admitted as much.
Coulter understands that if conservatives lose, there is no defunding Planned Parenthood, there is no alternative to Obamacare, state’s rights will be obliterated, and constitutional conservatism will breathe its last labored breath.
She also knows very well that Republicans are equally to blame—only in a more subtle way. The Republican establishment (Boehner, McConnell, etc) have been slowly pressing a knife into the gut of conservatism for years, making more obvious moves only recently in the wake of people like Ted Cruz and Mike Lee finally standing up and defying them.
Given the pressure from both sides—Democrat and Republican—Trump’s popularity comes as no surprise. He’s not Washington. Period. And given his focus on immigration—Coulter’s signature issue—it should surprise no one that she’s promoting him.
But here’s the thing: Ann Coulter isn’t promoting Donald Trump; she’s promoting his boldness, his fearlessness, and more specifically, his willingness to confront the immigration issue head on.
By pushing Trump’s candidacy, Coulter is pushing immigration reform in a way that actually matters.
For decades, we’ve heard the same rhetoric about the border from Democrats and Republicans, but neither party really wants a secure border; neither party really wants to change how the immigration system works. Both parties receive benefits from a porous border and a broken immigration system.
Trump comes on the scene and offers a blistering assessment of the situation at hand, then presents a forceful immigration proposal that—if implemented—would actually be good for something. Instead of mealy-mouthed rhetoric about immigration like we can expect from John ‘build the dang fence’ McCain every six years, Trump has actually addressed the issue head on.
It can be argued that several of Trump’s proposals aren’t feasible. It can also be argued that to overcome an extraordinary crisis, one must reach for extraordinary solutions. If even a fraction of Trump’s plan is workable, something will actually have been accomplished.
More specifics need to be addressed, but as of yet, Trump’s proposal is the most aggressive solution I’ve seen to this incredible problem. Moreover, most politicians wouldn’t have the balls to take such a tough, but honest position on this issue. Immigration is the true third rail of politics.
Trump’s celebrity and in-your-face attitude have combined to create the perfect storm. This Trumpnado can be used to tear apart the status quo, uproot the go-along club, and force the conversation. Trump’s proposal will act as a guiding light around which the other candidates will have to gather.
If we don’t have Trump, we don’t have this perfect storm. So long as Trump continues to be seen and highlighted, this critical issue will also get national attention.
That’s presumably why Ann Coulter is promoting Trump. That’s why I’m promoting Trump. I don’t want a Trump presidency for a multitude of reasons—I doubt she does either. However, by promoting him, we can use him to shine a spotlight on immigration. It’s behavioral hyperbole.
So before you slam Ann Coulter for aggressively supporting Trump, think about why she would be doing such a thing. Oh, she’s an idiot. Yeah, keep thinking that. Look at her body of work and dismiss her methods at your own peril. It may turn out that you’re the idiot.