Peggy Noonan is perhaps the last of the great conservative thinkers and writers from the Reagan era, so her opinions carry a great deal of currency with me (and with others).
On this, however, she is tragically wrong. From the pages of the Wall Street Journal:
Those who oppose Mr. Trump should do it seriously and with respect for his supporters. If he is not conservative, make your case and explain what conservatism is. No one at this point needs your snotty potshots or your supposedly withering one-liners. I confess I have lost patience with many of those declaring they cannot in good conscience support him, not because reasons of conscience are not crucial—they are, and if they apply they should be declared. But some making these declarations managed in good conscience, indeed with the highest degree of self-regard, to back the immigration proposals of George W. Bush that contributed so much to the crisis that produced Mr. Trump. They invented Sarah Palin. They managed to support the global attitudes and structures that left the working class jobless. They dreamed up the Iraq war.
Of coiurse, it would be helpful if — in response to such high-minded evaluations that Peggy is asking for — Trump supporters did not imitate their candidate… and respond with “supposedly withering one-liners,” etc.
Sadly the world is trained to think in 140 characters or less… Goldberg’s observation “if it’s funny (or vulgar) it must be true” seems to have captured the Republican nomination.
Why should Trump’s critics hold themselves to a different form of informational exchange?