Don't be a Jerk, Just Say Sorry
by Geraldo Rivera | Jul 09, 2015
Yesterday I had a rare argument with my lovely wife Erica. It was about a relatively trivial matter involving which after-school activity would be most beneficial for Sol our almost ten year old. Erica wanted her to get more involved in math and science. Generally, I was leaning more toward physical activities like swimming and soccer.
Remember the old movie "Love Story," which had the tag line, ‘Love means never having to say you’re sorry?” Baloney.
Sometimes love means swallowing your pride and apologizing, even if you’re not a hundred percent sure you were really wrong in the first place.
To make a long story short, I got impatient, raised my voice, and five minutes later put my macho tail between my legs and told Erica that I was sorry, apologizing for being a jerk.
That’s what South Carolina is doing with the Confederate battle flag. Even though the flag has considerable support among many South Carolinians for reasons that range from understandable to unsavory, still the State House of Representatives voted last night to remove the flag from the Capitol grounds.
It was like the whole State suspended its reservations, saying it was sorry for the legacy of slavery and Jim Crow and especially for the awful church massacre that left nine good people attending a Bible study slaughtered in cold blood.
Governor Nikki Haley said of the action, "it is a new day in South Carolina, a day we can all be proud of.” The bill calls for the flag to come down within 24 hours of her signature, which will probably happen today.
Which brings me to Donald Trump and his inability to say he’s sorry for his noxious statements about Mexican immigrants. You know that I tried, speaking with my friend and former boss on “Celebrity Apprentice.” I asked him to apologize for his wildly inaccurate comments about drug dealers and rapists. He refused, and he keeps painting himself into a shrinking corner of the political room, appealing to the hardest hard core anti-immigration forces in the country.
Ironically, because the rightest of the right wing votes in Republican primaries, in the fractured field of almost twenty candidates, Trump is benefiting from his brashness, sitting in second place in the three early primary states and even higher elsewhere.
But Republicans worry that his inflammatory comments are not merely hurting his political rivals, he is damaging the Republican brand, which realizes that it needs a fair chuck of the Hispanic vote if it hopes to recapture the White House.
It’s gotten so intense that yesterday the head of the Republican National Committee Reince Preibus reportedly spent nearly an hour, according to various sources, trying to convince Trump to dial it down. Instead, and you have to marvel at the man’s stubborn confidence, despite losing lucrative business deals, Trump keeps feeding the beast of controversy actually re-tweeting that Jeb Bush “has to like the Mexican Illegals because of his wife,” Columba, who was born in Mexico.
Trump will probably not win the nomination. But he has tapped into the outrage over illegal immigration and he has unleashed an impassioned conversation about border security. And the fact that many Latinos view his approach as tinged with racism, too bad. He’s not backing down. And the longer he stays the man to beat the longer the odds that the GOP will recapture the White House.