Donald Trump has no shortage of detractors and haters. Many have called for violence against him and his family. It's disgusting and unacceptable. The forces in Congress lead by Democrats and joined by too many Republicans in Washington and in state capitals are conflating specific acts of violence with peaceful protests. They are also using a very Orwellian strategy of calling a speech asking for peaceful protests and turning it into a call for violence.

Let me be clear: the president of the United States had every right to question the counting practices, lack of transparency and rules changes without legislative approval leading up to his defeat. Questioning government is a critical component of American culture and society. It's part of why a Republican form of government can work.

The problem today is that too many people ignore facts and history and regurgitate "talking points" from agenda-driven elites who control the "means of communication".

When the president of the United States is not "allowed" to inspire legal and peaceful protests, then we no longer live in a free country.

When tech billionaires are allowed to go unchecked deciding which speech is allowed and which isn't all the while enjoying the protection from liability from the federal government, then we no longer live in a free country.

When mobs of armed protestors with black shields and incendiary devices can walk unchecked through cities and neighborhoods forcing closures, destroying stores and homes, assaulting and, in some cases, killing people, driving police officers from their precinct buildings and stopping medical care from reaching people behind the rioters line, then we no longer live in a free country.

How did this happen? There are three reasons, in my opinion, that the president failed. At every turn, he had the opportunity to right the wrong, but didn't. President Trump could have solved and even prevented much of what we are now experiencing. Unfortunately, he did the opposite of what he should have done. His Oval Office speech about violence this week was the capstone on a lost war that leaves the rest of us to pick up the pieces and rebuild.

Reason #1: Instead of following Fauci, Birx and Redfield, Trump should've fired them.

Trump allowed the CDC to become a political tool of driving fear instead of solutions. Instead of sticking to using science and the force of the federal government to enhance hospital operations and provide states with the necessary equipment and personnel to treat the sick, the CDC fanned the flames of panic. We heard about "millions" of potential deaths if we don't lock down. Zero evidence that a lockdown would solve anything, but Trump went along.

Then we were told masks don't work to stop viral spread and that claim was backed up by plenty of medical and scientific evidence and facts. When Fauci changed his mind, Trump said nothing.

When the goal of "15 Days to stop the spread" was actually met in mid-April, Trump gave speeches like a ranting student who doesn't like the rules and although mad at the teacher, recognizes that the teacher has the final say. Where in the Constitution does it say your civil, economic and religious liberties are subject to a health scare?

In 2009 and again in 2018, two really bad flu seasons where thousands died, hundreds of kids included, and hospitals were maxed out in many areas, the feds stepped in to help, but there was never even a hint that we should have a lockdown. South Korea, Japan, Sweden all got through this without locking their citizens down. Trump played politics thinking that he could have it all. Rising public anger with the lockdowns would translate into votes in November. He would be the hero of the pandemic. Rushing a vaccine through, that will surely end the lockdowns and he can take credit for reliving your suffering.

Had he been the great leader many of us thought he was, he would have stopped the suffering in April, fired the politicized docs and reassured the nation that he was in charge. After all, we elected him, not the CDC bureaucrats. Then he could have paraded scientist after scientist through the White House press conferences to reassure the fearful of what rational calm thinkers knew all along — COVID was not nearly as deadly as they said and lockdowns will kill more than they save.

Reason #2: Trump should have actively sought justice for the lies about collusion and the campaign spying done under the previous administration.

They spied on his campaign. They lied about collusion and a myriad of other baseless accusations. They started a witch hunt to take down allies of the president on unrelated issues. Over the past four years, "they" are the bureaucrats entrenched throughout our federal government, protected by layers of regulations and civil service codes who seem to operate without consequences even when their actions are targeted illegally at the incoming and sitting president. There should have been a mass firing of anyone at the FBI and any other government agency which participated.

Trump kept too many of these bureaucrats on the team. He trusted people as if he was running a business, thinking that if they crossed one too many lines he could fire them eventually. His confidence in corrupt bureaucrats and delusion that his power as president wasn't somewhat tied to the people around him, was a failure that eventually cost him the office.

Instead of tweeting hate at his enemies from within his own administration, he should have acted, firing them and exposing the things they were doing. The media should have been forced to carry the stories of what egregious actions resulted in termination. Hundreds of bureaucrats should have been terminated within the first 100 days. Andrew Jackson did that and brought in his friends and allies to run the government. It was the smart play. Trump played Andrew Jackson on Twitter, but in reality he was a far cry from the seventh president.

Reason #3: Trump should have aggressively shut down the violence from Antifa/BLM with the military.

Perhaps the biggest mistake and failure of Trump's presidency was he sat back and tweeted anger while our cities burned at the hands of radical, anti-cop, America-hating mobs. The president of the United States has the authority to protect the rights of people in the country regardless of what state we reside. The fact that the president tried to gain political points by blaming the corrupt mayors and governors in Blue states where most of the violence erupted is absurd.

The truth is, he was afraid of the "optics" sending in troops to install order in our cities. True that the optics of the Marines marching on a downtown isn't anything Americans are used to seeing and many would have been horrified. But similar to inner-city residents, regardless of skin color, almost unanimously praised the increase in police patrols in violent cities like Newark, proves the point. How can Americans be left out on their own as radicals burned their homes and businesses and attacked police and, in one case, declared an "Autonomous Zone" (called an insurrection by any reasonable definition), preventing cops and medical personnel from entering?

The president failed to protect the liberties, livelihoods and lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans bullied and persecuted by radicals from BLM and Antifa. He should have federalized the National Guard and sent in the Marines to quell the violence and arrest all the perpetrators. The violence that erupted across our cities in full view of the world changed the course of this nation. Had Trump sent in the troops at the first sign that a governor and/or mayor wasn't going to act to protect the rights and lives of people they were elected to serve, the violence would have ended. Instead, the politicians looked the other way and justified the violence in the name of "social justice".

What about the social justice for those who were beaten, killed and robbed of their homes and businesses? What about the social justice for the brave heroes of law enforcement who were thrown into a military-style melee without the proper support, armaments, protection and training? Instead of using the military to protect citizens, Trump tweeted. I would have mobilized the military within hours to relieve the local cops from that risk. Thousands would have been arrested and would be serving time today.

Instead of handling the real and pervasive violence around the country then, Trump apologizes for the relatively small amount of violence on Capitol Hill. He used an Oval Office speech to condemn violence as if he was the guilty party. Why did he not push back and revisit the actual evidence that he called for peaceful demonstrations against obvious government corruption? He called for unity with the very forces that are focused on the destruction of our economy and values.

In one speech, he devalued the voices of tens of millions of Americans suffering under deadly lockdowns and arbitrary government mandates, which are dehumanizing us and wrecking our communities. This was Trump's Neville Chamberlain moment.

He's beaten. He's tired. He would have been better off resigning the office during the speech and hoping that Pence would pardon him and put an end to the impeachment charade. But no, instead he apologized like a hostage recognizing that the captors cause is the only just cause. Despite facts, despite reality, despite the fact that his enemies will not thank him for the speech, instead they will go after him with a renewed fervor knowing that he is in a weakened state. Sad end to a very promising presidency.

The reality is any normal person would condemn and look for justice for the cop who lost his life after a rioter tosses a fire extinguisher at him. At the same time, normal people would condemn and look for justice for the 35-year-old Air Force vet, Ashli Babbitt, who was shot dead in cold blood by a uniformed gunman. The president didn't even mention her name. Meanwhile, violent felons and would-be cop killers have their names enshrined on the helmets of NFL players. The Left never apologizes for the horrors over the past few months. Instead they justify it all, even the gross violations of COVID restrictions (that shouldn't exist anyway) for "social justice," as the rest of us were fined and prosecuted for breaking them.

The president failed and it resulted in an election that was so close, even a small amount of fraud and dead voters could move a state in the other column. Bottom line is that if he had acted by standing up to the PC bullies, crisis actors and violent mobs, we'd be talking about his second term from the vantage point of a booming economy and safe streets. But look at us now.

Pray that we eventually elect a president with the strength, courage and commitment to the Constitution and the American way of life to ignore the polls, the optics and the haters and be tough enough to fight. Fight like hell for the working and middle class families who are the true representatives of our great country. Regardless of which party that president represents.

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The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.

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