Bikers for Trump

In keeping with his very strong support among the military and veteran communities, Donald Trump finds himself the only remaining Presidential candidate welcome at Rolling Thunder.
Mr. Trump was addressing a gathering at the 29th annual Rolling Thunder motorcycle run, a vast event over Memorial Day weekend that is dedicated to accounting for military members taken as prisoners of war or listed as missing in action. Bikers assembled at the Pentagon before riding en masse into the nation’s capital, with many dressed in leather vests covered in patches, their bikes rumbling throughout the afternoon....

Nancy Regg, a spokeswoman for Rolling Thunder, said the group had invited Mr. Trump to appear. The group did not extend an invitation to Hillary Clinton or Senator Bernie Sanders, she said.

Richard McFadden, 58, an annual Rolling Thunder attendee from North Carolina, said Mrs. Clinton would not have been welcome.

“Just like asking Jane Fonda to show up, it’d be a very, very bad thing,” said Mr. McFadden, who works in computer support and wore a button that read, “Hillary for Prison 2016.”

Mr. Trump’s supporters include a group called “Bikers for Trump,” which has more than 46,000 “likes” on Facebook. Speaking on Sunday, Mr. Trump told the crowd of seeing large numbers of bikers at his campaign events.

“I said, ‘What are they all doing here?’ and my people would say, ‘They’re here to protect you, Mr. Trump,’” he said. “It’s an amazing thing. And I want to tell you, some of these people are tough.”

But when he shakes their hands, “there is love, and it’s an incredible feeling, and that’s why I wanted to be with you today,” he said.
The article notes how odd it is that Trump is so welcome there given his remarks about Senator McCain's days as a POW. Even when reminded of the comments, people at the rally shrugged them off.

Possibly this is because Trump -- in spite of his many flaws -- shows evidence of a patriotism that looks like what Chesterton called a "primal loyalty." Chesterton wanted you to be a patriot of the world, in the sense of being loyal to and loving of the Creation made by God. There is a general point about what it is to really be loyal to something, though, whether God or Country or family. Chesterton asks if this should be a natural or a supernatural loyalty, which he suggests is equivalent to asking if it should be a reasonable or an unreasonable loyalty.

This same paradox may be at work with Trump, and the love he draws from people who are united by this kind of supernatural loyalty to America. To America, I say, rather than to the Federal Government of the United States: to the Constitution, but the Constitution as they understand the Constitution rather than as the Supreme Court interprets it. That's the kind of patriotism I feel deep in my heart, and it may be that Trump feels it in his own weird way also. That recognition allows these veterans to forgive him all his other flaws, all his very many flaws, because they see that he shares in this primal loyalty.

I won't follow him for very many reasons -- for reasons, to return to Chesterton's commentary. Maybe he's right that an unreasonable loyalty is stronger than a reasonable one. Certainly it seems to explain why Trump is running so strong with veterans in spite of things like his remarks about John McCain.


J Melcher said...

McCain, like Kerry, has very little credibility with me or others who tend to suppose that Nixon and Le Duc Tho might have lied about POWs and MIAs in the 1970s. McCain, (and Kerry) had opportunity to investigate those potential lies in the 1990s, and in general reinforced the official story rather than penetrated it. Either the official story, the first draft, was surprisingly -- historically unique in being -- free of political and diplomatic bias; or the Senators' investigation was inadequate.

I note with some interest that Hillary promises to reopen the UFO question. She is taken, and takes the believers in, UFOs at least semi-seriously. But the hundreds or thousands of voters who fly the black POW/MIA flag are a faction she considers unworthy of appeasing. As if the reasons and chances that the US government might lie about the existence of Vietnamese-held POWs are less than that it might lie about alien-life-piloted UFOs.

My distrust of McCain on this issue doesn't go to his honesty, per se. But I do question his psychological readiness to accept that perhaps he himself did, however unknowingly, fail in his mission. That mission, as Stockdale set it before him; was to remain until other less conspicuous prisoners were returned. What would it cost the Senator's soul to learn other men in other camps spent years in pain after he himself escaped? Given the choice to accept evidence of such a painful idea, or to reject claims as unfounded, to which choice would this particular Senator be inclined? (Senator KERRY's motives for believing the tales told by Le Duc Tho are no doubt different.)

It would be fascinating to hear the question put to Hillary so directly: "Do you still believe Richard Nixon's claims about Vietnamese POWs and MIAs?"

Grim said...

A reasonable point. It's just surprising to see Trump so welcome in spite of his draft-dodging, mocking of a famous POW, and claims that having lots of sex in the '80s was 'his personal Vietnam.'

J Melcher said...

Distrusting Hillary -- or prior nominees Kerry and McCain -- has little to do with embracing Mr Trump. I would not literally embrace "The Donald" whatever his views on the Military; he has a bunch of baggage on other issues and what were loosely called his "New York values" are a real problem for me. In the Republican primaries I had a baker's dozen favorites before Trump.

That said, I recall George II was said to have remarked about Major General James Wolfe, who was accused of running mad: "Mad, is he? Then I wish to God he would BITE my other generals." Lincoln appears to have rephrased the sentiment when advised that U.S. Grant was a drunk: “If I can only find out where he buys his wonderful whiskey, I will send a barrel to every general in the Federal army.” Trump, like Wolfe or Grant, FIGHTS. If I knew that Trump's regard of the press corps could induced; I would be striving to infect or intoxicate several hundred more pusillanimous candidates.

Grim said...

Oh, aye, he fights. But what's he fighting for? I can only conclude that we have no idea, and that possibly he doesn't either.

Still, you're right: the need for a fighter is so obvious at this hour that people may simply accept him on the grounds that he is one. It would have been better to get a fighter with principles, but perhaps a fighter without principles is to be preferred to a principled non-fighter.

I suppose we'll sort out what he'll do with the power once he gets it. I can only hope that it will somehow be related to "Making America Great Again." It's a worthy goal, although as per the last post I don't see how you can do it without drastically thinning the bureaucracy.

Joel Leggett said...

I feel fairly confident that the answer to the question, "What's he fighting for" is simply, and exclusively, for himself.

Donald is in it for Donald. He has successfully fooled a lot of patriotic people into believing his campaign is about making America "Great again." In actuality, it's is nothing more than a brazen attempt to "Make Trump Great again." That is one of the reasons I detest him. He is shamelessly trading on the loyalty of patriotic citizens to promote himself. I hope there is a special place in Hell for such charlatans.

I am a biker that is most definitely NOT for Trump.

Ymar Sakar said...

So when is Trump going to stop the Waco 2 and various other massacres of white people in this country?

Or was that one of those fish hooks they threw for the masses, like FDR claimed he was going to avoid war.

If white biker club members could have saved themselves from the State, they shouldn't have voted Democrat evil and bought into the system. Kind of contrary to their stated aims even.