Letters to the Editor: How Trump’s constant lying has ruined the basic social order in America

Supporters of President Trump rally in Phoenix on Nov. 4.
Supporters of President Trump rally outside the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office in Phoenix as election workers tabulate ballots on Nov. 4.
(Associated Press)

To the editor: In one sense, the outcome of the presidential election matters very little, because we have all lost so much of our basic understandings and shared assumptions that are necessary for social order and civility. Regardless of who wins, the social foundation of the United States has been severely damaged and is not likely to recover anytime soon. (“Even if he loses, Trump has won,” Opinion, Nov. 4)

Many sociologists say that the most important thing you can know about someone is what they take for granted. Many shared views have been quashed during four years of President Trump’s more than 22,000 lies and misleading claims. Mining opinion polls, hundreds of hours of news, talk shows and conversations with many people shows what many Americans now take for granted, and it is not encouraging.

Society runs on basic assumptions about rights, liberty, justice and routine social processes. Although these have often been problematic for minority group members, they are now less certain for many Americans. This is disastrous for democracy and will be a lingering accomplishment of the Trump administration.


David L. Altheide, Solana Beach, Calif.

The writer, a sociologist, is a professor emeritus at the Arizona State University School of Social Transformation.


To the editor: Journalists at the Los Angeles Times too often show their disdain for voters who express their independence by voting for Trump. You expose your own bias. Your reporters expose their bias.

In an article on Latino voters supporting Trump, the reporter asked, “Why didn’t more Latinos vote for [former Vice President Joe] Biden and why did so many, relatively speaking, vote for Donald Trump?”

In his op-ed column, Nicholas Goldberg wrote, “The fact that tens of millions voted for him again, knowing what they know, is just mind-boggling.”

You put Republicans under a microscope and give less scrutiny to riots and the shootings of law enforcement officers.

Herb Young, Beverly Hills


To the editor: It is automatically assumed that when “tens of millions of people” vote for Trump, it is because they like him. More attention should be paid to the fact that Republicans dislike the Democratic ideology.

Here is the problem: If half the country voted Republican in this election, when we had someone with a volatile personality running, it could be assumed that even more Republican votes will be garnered in the presidential election four years from now.

The difference: Trump will be gone, and a new conservative nominee will be running for president.

Jo-Anne Collins, Fountain Valley


To the editor: I could not agree more with Goldberg calling Trump’s irresponsible handling of climate change a “crime against humanity.”

Our children, grandchildren and grandchildren’s grandchildren will pay for this presidency in the form of increasingly severe droughts, wildfires, hurricanes, species loss and flooded coastal cities. These disasters will impact food production, housing, healthcare, jobs and our standard of living.

It sickens me to think about the cost of the last four years. Climate change is not simply going to disappear.

Mr. President, future generations beg you to go away, now, before you do any more damage.

Marilyn Judson, Santa Monica


To the editor: Some Trump voters might agree with Goldberg’s comment on climate change. More than 70% of Americans understand that global warming is happening, and about 60% understand that it is mostly human-caused, according to the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication.

Trump’s reckless policy decisions are at odds with what most Americans want. Three-quarters of us say we would support regulating carbon emissions, and two-thirds would like to see fossil fuel companies pay a carbon tax.

Many Trump voters may actually welcome the new administration’s science-based approach to addressing climate change.

David Sims, Long Beach


To the editor: Goldberg’s consternation over the choices of Trump supporters seems predicated on a simplistic view of the electorate. I expect that for many of us, whom and what we were voting against mattered more than whom we were voting for.

I was voting against Sen. Kamala Harris, Biden’s running mate. His attempts to shore up his socialist bona fides with the liberals’ progressive wing came at a high cost.

James E. Moore II, Los Angeles