In a Hole and Sinking Fast

Jewish Light Editorial

When you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop digging. That’s sound advice for someone whose words and deeds are injurious to himself or others — someone like President Donald Trump in the aftermath of his description of Haiti and “African” nations as “shithole” countries whose immigrants we should not welcome over those from countries “like Norway.”

Trump has denied making the blatantly racist statement, but several members of Congress insisted he did use the term at a White House meeting called to discuss a bipartisan bill to give about 800,000 “Dreamers” legal status.

Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., told reporters that the president used that language not once but several times. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., also confirmed reports of Trump’s slur. In view of the president’s record of using falsehoods disguised as “alternative facts,” his denials lack plausibility.

So once again, the out-of-control Twitter Trump has undone the more disciplined TelePrompTer Trump. 


Last Thursday, Trump presided at a remarkable meeting with a bipartisan group of lawmakers that was held in full view of the media. The president drew positive reviews even from some of his detractors for his “presidential” and expansive handling of the discussion. 

At the end of that meeting, it appeared that a deal was in place to make permanent the program that would allow Dreamers to stay, along with some funding for border security. 

“You bring me a deal and I’ll sign it,” Trump said, adding that if there was any strong opposition, he “would take the heat.”

Trump certainly helped himself by seeming statesmanlike and on message. He appeared competent and mentally fit, in marked contrast to Michael Wolff’s portrayal of him in Wolff’s explosive book “Fire and Fury.”

Then, two days after Trump’s Triumph at the Tuesday meeting, the world witnessed Trump’s Tragedy when he fell into the very “shithole” that he had dug for himself.  After widespread criticism and denunciations of his crude language, the president said that any deal to protect the Dreamers was dead and blamed Democrats for its demise. Sad!

Trump’s pattern of two steps forward and 1,000 steps back is wearing thin, not only among his opponents but even among a growing number of his supporters. And he has no one to blame but himself. 

He should stop digging the hole he finds himself in and start showing more respect and statesmanship if he wants to rescue a presidency that is sinking lower all the time.