On Saturday, August 4, a photo of two men wearing t-shirts proclaiming, “I’d rather be a Russian than a Democrat” went viral. The two men were attending a rally in Ohio, where Donald Trump was supporting Republican Troy Balderson, who is running in the special election. “I’d rather be a Russian than a Democrat” seems to directly contradict “Make America Great Again,” emblazoned, ironically (or not), on the baseball cap one of them was wearing.
To say “I’d rather be a Russian than a Democrat” is, on one hand, a little like the “Yeah, butting” (“Yeah, but at least he’s not Hillary”) that has become a trend whenever Democrats find any fault with Trump. In this case, it’s “I support a president who is cozying up to Russia, but at least I’m not a Democrat.”
Some are already explaining away the t-shirts as “just a joke,” and that Democrats are overreacting. Perhaps, but these men are not the only ones who have implied that they’d prefer Putin over a fellow American citizen. About a year ago, a photo of a woman holding a sign that read, “Thank you Russia” went viral. And a new YouTube video promotes the t-shirts for sale. Will we begin seeing more and more such sentiments as the Mueller investigation continues?
It’s troubling when people either don’t know history, or don’t care about Putin and his legacy. It’s downright alarming when people proclaim that Putin and all he stands for (murder and the denial of human rights come immediately to mind) are preferable to Americans who support human rights and basic freedoms.
One might be inclined to laugh (if it weren’t so horrifying) at the irony of two Trump supporters wearing “I’d rather be a Russian than a Democrat” t-shirts. They come from the same group of people who vigorously wave the American flag, claim to stand by our military, and choose to be offended by athletes who “take a knee” during the National Anthem.
On the other hand, is the slogan, “I’d rather be a Russian than a Democrat” all that far off from what a typical Trump supporter advocates? They do, after all, denigrate our free press; support the recent policy of cruelty to children and their families at the Mexican border, and continually parrot Donald Trump’s disregard for such basic American foundations as the U.S. Constitution. Perhaps “I’d rather be a Russian than a Democrat” is closer to the truth than even a Trump supporter realizes when he says it.
‘Pro-Russia’ t-shirts at Trump rally go viral, sending Democrats into meltdown | Today News [2018-06-08]
Trump speaks at Ohio rally |CNN [2018-08-04]