Jonathon van Maren

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If Trump didn’t hate Planned Parenthood before…he does now

Jonathon van Maren Jonathon van Maren Follow Jonathon

Jan. 25, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) - On Saturday, hundreds of thousands of progressive activists packed the US capital for the Women’s March on Washington, a full-throated and angry rejection of Donald J. Trump as president of the United States.

From my position in the middle of the crowd, I saw hundreds of signs that read “F*** Trump,” dozens of others that called him every name imaginable, grotesque caricatures of the new president, and one particularly repugnant sketch of him giving a woman oral sex. From the stage, Madonna launched an expletive-laced attack on Trump, while actress Ashley Judd referred to him as “Hitler,” a name reflected in many of the slogans on the signs. The message from the progressive movement to Trump, from the LGBT crowd to the abortion activists, was a simple one: We hate you. You are our enemy. And we will try to destroy you.

Planned Parenthood could have tried to influence and lobby Trump to retain their federal funding or win some compromises. The gay rights activists could have praised him for being the first Republican president who seemed open to supporting their movement. Instead, they called Trump Hitler.

The media portrayed the March as historic, and at least in regards to the size they are probably right in that assessment. But I believe that the so-called progressive movement may also look back at their decision to declare Donald Trump the enemy to be an historic mistake

After all, if there is one thing we know about the new president for certain, it is that when people declare war on him, he is apt to take them up on the challenge. What the secular progressives are doing is ensuring that their influence on the president of the United States for the next four, if not eight, years is absolutely zero—and are instead creating an implacable enemy known for his habit of punching back twice as hard. He also happens to possess control of nearly all levers of power, relieving him of the obligation to cut deals with his ideological opponents to pass his agenda.

From the beginning of Trump’s candidacy, I and many others were convinced that Donald Trump was not a social conservative. We were convinced that his pro-life position was one of political convenience and not of principle. He said that Planned Parenthood did “a lot of good things.” He seemed sympathetic to the objectives of the gay rights movement, and even waved a rainbow flag at one of his rallies. For much of his life, he was a liberal and a Democrat, which is not surprising since he was a New York businessman and reality TV show star. We were convinced that because he did not appear to share our values, he would not bother to prioritize or even act on our concerns should he gain the White House. In short, many of us thought he would use the Republican Party as a political vehicle, but revert to his socially liberal views should he gain power.

But then the entire secular progressive movement, their high-pitched rhetoric indicating hysteria, turned Trump into the epicentre of a massive moral panic. He was racist, xenophobic, transphobic, homophobic, fascist, and a good many other things. Comparisons to Hitler and Mussolini became routine.

Much of it was bewildering—how could gay rights activists be so sure that a man who said gay ‘marriage’ was settled law and waved a rainbow flag at his rallies was dedicated to opposing their agenda? How could abortion activists be so positive that a New Yorker who declared himself completely pro-choice a few short years ago would be willing to enact a pro-life agenda? It seems that they didn’t even stop to consider the cost of so thoroughly demonizing someone who might potentially be sympathetic to their socially liberal agenda—or at least ideologically indifferent to the agenda of social conservatives.

If we know one thing about Donald Trump, it is that he prizes loyalty first and foremost. His running mate Mike Pence, a principled pro-lifer and rock-ribbed conservative, earned Trump’s loyalty on the campaign trail and by sticking with the Trump ticket during the Billy Bush media firestorm. So did other conservatives. As a result, Trump returned their loyalty. He made a list of firm pro-life commitments, and has already signed an executive order banning all funding for groups promoting or providing abortions overseas. It seems that he is committed to defunding Planned Parenthood. In post-election interviews, he has not backed away from his pro-life promises.

Is his conversion to the pro-life position genuine? Perhaps. I have certainly seen enough people change their minds on abortion to know that it is very possible, and with the influence of men like Mike Pence, maybe even likely. But what we know for certain is that when Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry and the LGBT rainbow warriors decided to declare war on Donald Trump, they set any bridges they might have used to influence his decision-making ablaze.

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Donald Trump, from what we can tell, sees the world as made up of two groups of people: His friends, and his enemies. He is very loyal to his friends, and he is ruthless with his enemies. This comes through in his books, in his interactions with the media, and with his responses to criticism that he feels unwarranted.

Regardless of Trump’s ideological views—which seemed, for the most part, to be incoherent during the campaign—the secular progressive set voluntarily migrated into enemy territory, and have since proceeded to call him every savage name they can think of. Many conservatives, on the other hand, have gained his trust by allying with him and sticking with him. Others fall into the category of “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.” The New Yorker who lived as a liberal and held liberal views for much of his life is now the declared enemy of those who once shared his values, and is allied with some of the best pro-life politicians in the country.

Politically speaking, it seems to me that the declaration of war launched at the Women’s March on Washington was a very unwise move. Donald Trump’s family members appear to be quite socially liberal, and he is infamously susceptible to flattery. Planned Parenthood could have tried to influence and lobby Trump to retain their federal funding or win some compromises. The gay rights activists could have praised him for being the first Republican president who seemed open to supporting their movement—George W. Bush, after all, put forward the idea of protecting traditional marriage through a constitutional amendment.

Instead, they called Trump Hitler. 

The progressive activists have made a massive miscalculation: one that, as a social conservative, I could not be more thrilled about. They removed themselves from any place of potential influence.

If Trump didn’t hate Planned Parenthood before, he certainly does after they headlined a rally dedicated to trashing him on his second day in office. If he was sympathetic to the socially liberal aims of the progressive set before, it’s unlikely that he retains much fondness for them after they marched past the White House carrying signs that read “F*** Trump.”

Men like Mike Pence, on the other hand, have earned his loyalty and his trust. That is very good news for the pro-life and pro-family movement. 

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Jonathon van Maren

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Jonathon Van Maren is a public speaker, writer, and pro-life activist. His commentary has been translated into more than eight languages and published widely online as well as print newspapers such as the Jewish Independent, the National Post, the Hamilton Spectator and others. He has received an award for combating anti-Semitism in print from the Jewish organization B’nai Brith. His commentary has been featured on CTV Primetime, Global News, EWTN, and the CBC as well as dozens of radio stations and news outlets in Canada and the United States.

He speaks on a wide variety of cultural topics across North America at universities, high schools, churches, and other functions. Some of these topics include abortion, pornography, the Sexual Revolution, and euthanasia. Jonathon holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in history from Simon Fraser University, and is the communications director for the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform.

Jonathon’s first book, The Culture War, was released in 2016.