Sometimes, a fierce reaction to the shortest, most flippant of letters genuinely surprises me. Other times, I can hear the angry replies the moment I decide to publish a letter; that happened this week.
In the Nov. 19 L.A. Times, a letter writer dismissed impeachment as inconsequential to his opinion of President Trump. His reason: The stock market is doing well, and “if the market is doing well, anyone could be running the country, even Bugs Bunny, and I would be perfectly happy to reelect that president.”
Over the years, many of our letter writers have bristled at using the roaring stock market as an indicator of a president’s success. A letter that exalts the market as the single greatest reason for reelecting Trump, then, understandably prompted a strong reaction by some readers.
Penelope Burley of Santa Rosa Valley excoriates single-issue voting:
A letter writer said that if the stock market is doing well, he doesn’t care who the president is and would vote for him again.
This kind of mindless one-issue thinking and voting led us to see a disastrously unqualified, unfit, unpredictable and unhinged reality TV show host being elected president in 2016. What a dangerously myopic stance to cling to when you consider the president of the United States is the leader of the free world.
We can only hope that Americans will do their homework in 2020, look at the big picture and realize that Trump will go down in history as the worst, most corrupt and despised president of all time. His successor will inherit the unenviable task of trying to clean up the enormous destruction left in his wake.
Craig Wood of Palmdale makes a similar point:
The reader who could not care less whether Trump gets impeached over the Ukraine scandal said he will vote to reelect the president as long as the stock market is doing well.
This type of thinking explains how a person like Trump could have been elected president. These are people for whom only a single issue matters in determining their vote, whether it’s gun rights, abortion, immigration or the health of their 401(k) accounts.
Trump has masterfully capitalized on such narrow-mindedness.
South Pasadena resident Patricia LoVerme wants more community mindedness:
This letter illustrates the basis for the division in our country: what is good for me versus what is good for us.
The stock market is strong, in part, because the business community has high confidence that it will not be hamstrung by unnecessary regulations. Regulations are enacted for reasons, such as protecting water, air and the public lands we value.
Science has been sidelined. A member of my family said: “Why should I care about global warming? I’ll be dead.”
The nation is divided. Our worldviews are at odds. We can only hope that, going forward, more Americans value the public good over personal wealth. The planet’s existence depends on it.