I don’t want to believe that Joe Paterno knew about the stuff Jerry Sandusky was doing with underage boys at Penn State, but he did.
I don’t want to believe that Lance Armstrong cheated to win the Tour de France 7 times, but I’d bet my left nut that he did. What, too soon? He’s a cheater, and he’s healthy now, so I can make fun of him. It’s in the Geneva Convention, look it up.
I don’t want to believe that Dr. Huxtable roofied a bunch of women and then raped them, but he did, and he’s in deep Jello pudding now.
I don’t want to believe that Ray Rice beat the hell out of his wife in an elevator in Atlantic City, but there’s a gnarly video that says he did.
I don’t want to believe Barry Bonds, Mark McGuire and Sammy Sosa each took a metric ton of steroids to hit those home runs, but their abnormally enlarged craniums suggest they did.
I don’t want to believe that O.J. Simpson killed his ex-wife and her boyfriend, but even though the glove did not fit, everyone knows he was the real killer.
I don’t want to believe that Anthony Weiner, a.k.a. Carlos Danger, did the dirty stuff he did, but he tearfully admitted that he did. You’re better off, Huma.
I don’t want to believe that Michael Vick ran a dogfighting ring, but the courts and the NFL sure think he did. I’m not one to pick a fight with an NFL player, but I’d make an exception here.
I don’t want to believe that Tiger Woods is a drug-addled serial philanderer, but several videos and rough-looking mug shots tell us that he is.
I don’t want to believe that Bill Clinton had sexual relations with that woman, but there’s a stained blue dress that strongly suggests that he did.
And believe it or not, I don’t want to believe that Donald Trump is a narcissistic, pathological liar. I don’t want to believe that he values his own petty “wins” over doing what’s best for the country. I don’t want to believe that the leader of the free world wakes up every morning and punches out revenge tweets as if he’s the Keyboard Warrior in Chief. I don’t want to believe that the President of the United States refuses most of his intel briefings and prefers to get his news from Fox and Friends. I don’t want to believe that Mr. Trump was complicit with the Russian government to affect the election. I don’t want to believe that he’s less of an American than the rest of us.
I truly want Mr. Trump to succeed, even if I don’t agree with his policies. There’s no joy in seeing the right wing crumble and fall off, because I’m a passenger on this plane.
But I’m also a realist. Occam’s Razor says that all things being equal, the simplest explanation is usually right. Stated differently, “If you hear hoofbeats in the hallway, think of horses, not zebras.”
So, which do you think is more likely?
Is it more likely that a tycoon played fast and loose with the rules? Or is it instead that the entire media establishment is simply colluding to make him look bad?
Is it more likely that Junior was promised dirt on dad’s opponent by the Russian government, the proof of which Junior published himself? Or is it instead that the New York Times is literally pulling arbitrary nonsense from the clear blue sky?
Is it more likely that a businessman who promised instant change to Washington is now drowning in the swamp? Or is it that the entire “establishment” is blocking the former CEO’s otherwise efficient, effective, brilliant maneuvers?
Is it more likely that for-profit CNN, owned by Time Warner, a publicly traded, advertising-funded company, is skewing the news to make the President look bad? Or is it instead that the cadre of highly educated journalists is now drowning in a deluge of daily revelations that the President’s team is creating?
Is it more likely that a secret cabal of Obama disciples is hiding in the depths of the Executive Branch, disrupting the current administration? Or is it instead that, even with all three branches in line with one party, that party is still too splintered and dysfunctional to achieve much progress?
I wanted to believe that the arrogant, abrasive character Donald Trump played on TV for years would prove to be just that: a character. I wanted to believe that the real Donald Trump would rise to the demands of the office and prove his detractors wrong. I wanted to believe that through smart nominations, Donald Trump would make up for his own blind spots.
Each day, he proves that my optimism was really just naiveté. I’m continually surprised at how many people are willingly looking past his blatant, dangerous missteps. I can’t understand how so many intelligent, independent, and freethinking people turn a blind eye to the simplest explanations for his embarrassing and dangerous behavior.
I hear hoofbeats. And while I guess I could be surprised by a zebra, this whole situation sure smells an awful lot like horseshit.