By Maj. Gen. Jerry R. Curry, US Army (Ret.)
If American Revolutionary War Patriot Tom Paine, author of the pamphlet “Common Sense,” was alive today and involved in the nation’s presidential race, he would probably proclaim, “These are the times that try men’s souls. The Republican Party and its political elites will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of the country. But those who fight through to the end deserve our love and thanks … the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.”
The question is not how did we get into this mess, but how do we successfully fight our way out of it. Now is the time for real men and women to buckle on their swords and wade out into the deepest part of the battle, and challenge all opponents.
More than anything else, the American people deserve to be presented with a clear path forward. They deserve a leader of all the people, one who unites the nation instead of dividing it, not just a leader of women, minorities and illegal immigrants but of all Americans.
Once again Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump has jammed both feet into his mouth and, who knows, there may be more to come. This time he was caught on a hot mike coarsely and crudely bragging about groping women. What he said was wrong, dirty, and embarrassing to all Americans, most especially to the Republican Party.
But let us not pretend that this is the first time such vile things have been casually said by someone, on or off mike. And it’s time Republican elites like Paul Ryan got off their high horses and quit acting as though they’ve never heard such locker room talk. That doesn’t mean they should shrink from telling Trump of their being revulsed by his long ago choice of words and actions.
At times we have all said stupid things which we have later truly regretted, though hopefully they were not quite as vile as the words Donald Trump used. Yet, if the presidency can survive eight years of Obama and Hillary, it can easily survive eight years of Trump. He may not have mastered the gentleman’s art of using the English language, but he does know how to lead and succeed, and he loves the United States of America.
Compared to the kind of uncertainty that his opponent Hillary Clinton will bring to the White House with her family, the nation will be much better off with a President Trump. Does anyone really think that Hillary’s husband won’t be humping interns all over the White House when she goes away on presidential business?
Even though it was over ten years ago, Ohio Governor John Kasich is supposedly so greatly offended by Trump’s off-hand comments that he won’t support Trump’s campaign while Tump stumps in this critical state. Surely he must be equally offended about having a rapist and a congressionally certified liar living in the White House. Perhaps he would like to have Hillary certify that if she is elected to office, her husband will not be permitted to visit or live in the White House.
Clearly these are not ordinary times; they are times that try men’s souls. America would be better served if the political leaders of both parties quit whining and shirking their duties, and stopped pretending that they have always lived above the fray. Remember Tom Paine, the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.
Jerry Curry is a retired Army Major General, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense in the Carter administration; Acting Press Secretary to the Secretary of Defense in the Reagan administration; and Administrator of the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration in the Bush Sr. administration.