Christine Flowers, 3/25/2016 [Archive]

Be Careful What You Ask For When Talking Trump

By Christine Flowers

Here in Philadelphia, I often fill in for the regular hosts on our local talk radio station. Usually, I have a lot of fun engaging with listeners, but there are issues where I've parted company from the overwhelmingly conservative-to-libertarian listeners, including immigration reform and guns.

Generally, I feel that I'm among friends when I sit behind the microphone. At least I did, until I realized that I'm either not as conservative as I thought, or we've actually entered End Times and I'm one of the few who didn't get sucked up into the Rapture.

During my guest hosting stint, I intended to devote only one segment to the GOP frontrunner, but it ended up expanding to two full hours of Trumpversation. I've realized that when people want to talk about something, all the best-laid plans of discussing esoteric topics like Michelle Obama's wardrobe, Hillary Clinton's vocal chords and Debbie Wasserman Schultz's hair go out the window.

So during this one segment, I asked people in the audience who supported Trump to give me one clear and solid reason why they thought he'd be good for the country. I told the listeners I didn't want to hear the usual "He'll make America Great Again!" I warned them not to speak in platitudes like, "He's not part of the establishment." I begged them, in good faith, to explain one aspect of his candidacy that would have an immediate and real impact on the economy, on immigration, on the courts, on national security, on anything that would justify voting for him. I asked for something practical, not ideological. I really expected some specifics, because there are smart people who listen to talk radio, significantly smarter than most people give them credit for.

One fellow named Tom called in to say that he thought Trump would be good because it was time to get rid of the lawyers. As a lawyer, I didn't take any personal offense, but when I inquired as to what Tom meant by that he said, "Lawyers write the laws that make them rich, and Trump will get rid of the lawyers. Then he'll put in better lawyers."

That had me scratching my head, especially because Trump is (1) rich and (2) intimately familiar with lawyers who are (3) rich. I know that Tom meant his candidate would get rid of the bureaucracy, and that is a legitimate concern, but he wasn't able to tell me how he'd do it.

Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Jeb Bush and even Ben Carson had actual plans. But Trump just has a lot of double adjectives like "really, really" and "so, so" and "totally, totally" to communicate when people ask him what he's going to do to improve the country. Well that's not totally totally, really really, so so fair of me. He has said he'd build a wall. And he has said that Mexico would pay for it.

Which was news to Mexico. Totalmente, totalmente.

But Tom's call didn't demoralize me as much as the last one I got, the one from a man named Sam in Jenkintown who, well, let me give you the exact conversation which I have transcribed from the show:

Christine: "Let's go to Sam in Jenkintown. Welcome to the program, Sam."

Sam: "Good afternoon ma'am. Listen, I'm a Donald Trump fan and a Ted Cruz fan, but I was born in 1946, and Donald Trump, he talks like my father, like my grandfather, like all the people did in them days. I don't think he can really come out and say what he really wants to do, because he wants to do, like he wants to get rid of the Mexicans, get rid of the Muslims. I'm all for that, they're ruining the country."

Christine: "I'm sorry... let me make sure that I got you correctly. You want to get rid of all the Mexicans and all the Muslims in the country?"

Sam: "That would be good, yeah, cause they don't bringing nothing to the country ma'am. Like when my ancestors came into the country they were plumbers, carpenters, bricklayers... These people come here they have no skills, they have nothing, you gotta put them on Social Security. I'm on Social Security, they're taking my money..."

At that point I cut Sam off and went to a commercial. And I realized that when you ask people for specifics, you better be prepared to get them. And boy, did I get them.

Talk to you after the break.


©2016 Christine Flowers. Flowers is an attorney and a columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News, and can be reached at

Download Christine Flowers's color photo - Download Christine Flowers's black and white mug shot photo
Why not run a cartoon with the column? We recommend the cartoons below as a good compliment to Christine Flowers's topic.
Click on the thumbnail images to preview and download the cartoons.

Related Cartoons

Trump and Cruz COLOR
By: Pat Bagley

March 24, 2016

Trump and Cruz
By: Pat Bagley

March 24, 2016

Trump trash talk
By: Adam Zyglis

March 25, 2016

Trump trash talk COLOR
By: Adam Zyglis

March 25, 2016

By: David Fitzsimmons

March 21, 2016

Free Speech for Donald
By: David Fitzsimmons

March 23, 2016

By: David Fitzsimmons

March 21, 2016

COLOR Free Speech for Donald
By: David Fitzsimmons

March 23, 2016

We do not accept and will not review unsolicited submissions from cartoonists.
Sales & Information: (805) 969-2829
Billing Information: (805)
Technical Support:

FREE cartoons for your website if you're already a paying print subscriber!
Artwork and columns are copyrighted by each creator. All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service