To be sure, Don Jr.’s “Triggered: How the Left Thrives on Hate and Tries to Silence Us” is a well-reasoned, chatty manifesto for the free enterprise system and his father’s agenda. But the book makes it clear his broadsides against the woke generation, advocates of socialism, and his father’s most vicious critics are aimed at the radical left, not at Democrats in general.
“The problem with using racism as a label for everything you don’t like, of course, is that racism is still a real problem that persists in this country — not nearly to the extent that the left would have you believe, of course, but it’s still one of our major issues,” Mr. Trump writes. “Real people face real racism every day. And when you use it as a buzzword to try to win a losing argument, it does a disservice to those who live under it.”
As for Muslims, a taxi driver from the Middle East told Mr. Trump that he agreed with his father’s temporary ban on immigration from countries that harbor radical Islamists. “The vast majority of Muslims feel the same, because they’re the targets of radical Islam, too,” the president’s oldest son notes.
Mr. Trump demolishes the left’s delusion that socialism is the solution to all of America’s problems. Mr. Trump’s grandparents told him what it was like to live in Communist-ruled Czechoslovakia, where his mother was born.
“The government issued tickets for food, but by the time my grandmother got her turn, there would be nothing left,” he says. “My grandfather once waited eight hours for an orange. My grandmother made all of my mother’s dresses by hand because the store shelves were empty when she was allowed to shop.”
The entire time Czechoslovakia was a Soviet state, his grandparents were under constant surveillance, Mr. Trump says.
As a child, he visited the country with his grandfather.
“I experienced the bread lines and the poverty myself,” he says. “When I talk about why socialism is bad, it’s not because I’ve read articles about it or seen people about talking about it on Twitter. I’ve been there, and I know why no one who’s actually lived under these systems ever advocates for them.”
As he grew older, Mr. Trump came to understand the engine that makes the United States so successful and what made socialist Czechoslovakia such a disaster. That engine “was called the market, and the missing piece was called capitalism,” he says.
Perhaps my favorite passage in “Triggered” is when Mr. Trump goes after the “far-left social justice warrior movement,” again distinguishing those in the movement from all Democrats.
“When you ask its adherents what they believe, they’ll usually say something like ‘equality for everyone’ (which, in liberal speak, translates to ‘equality for me but not for thee’), but they can never tell you what that looks like or how to pay for it,” Mr. Trump writes.
“They believe in a fictional place where everyone has exactly the same amount of money, and we’ve all morphed into one androgynous gender identity,” Mr. Trump says. “That place is sort of like the Soviet Union in the 1960s, only on Mars.
“All they really know is that the world isn’t fair, and that someone — preferably someone white, male, and conservative — needs to be punished for it. They want everyone in the world to be as angry and miserable as they are. But they aren’t working toward anything, and they don’t know how to build things. Left with nothing tangible, liberals get more radical, hate more people, and keep lowering the bar for what’s considered ‘offensive.’”
“Did you ever think you would live in a country where the president of the United States would have to stand up during his State of the Union address and declare that we ‘would never become a socialist country’? But here we are,” Mr. Trump writes, spotlighting the political choices that Americans now face.
• Ronald Kessler, a former Washington Post and Wall Street Journal investigative reporter, is the author of “The Trump White House: Changing the Rules of the Game.”
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