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R-E-S-P-E-C-T, What That Word Means to Me

If you remember who sang that song*, when**, and who wrote it*** (answers below), you’re probably a Baby Boomer – and you might decide this election.



Respect – or lack thereof – has received attention recently, so let’s compare candidates’ histories regarding it.





We’ll combine Moderates’ third Basic Belief and third Vital Value (since they represent similar principles), using our Moderate Leadership Test (MLT) to evaluate candidates. See previous posts, July 23 and July 30, for info on MLT; and August 6 and August 13, for scores on our first 2 Basic Beliefs.

We’ve based our scores on facts, not opinions, after researching Trump’s and Biden’s records. Please share YOUR scores in Comments after posts.

TMM’s third Basic Belief:

Fellow Americans holding different beliefs should NOT be demonized or attacked.

TMM’s third Vital Value:

We should respect our fellow Americans and their beliefs, including those different from our own, and show them the respect they deserve.

MLT’s criteria for both:

Have candidates displayed respect for opponents and their positions? Debated opponents emphasizing facts, not personal attacks?



A long history showing little respect for:

Veterans, POWs, Military Leaders

A recent Atlantic Magazine article reported President Trump refused to attend a 2018 ceremony in France honoring Allies’ World War I dead:

“Trump rejected the… visit because he feared his hair would become disheveled in the rain, and… he did not believe it important to honor American war dead, according to four people with firsthand knowledge of… that day… Trump said, ‘Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers’… Trump referred to the more than 1,800 marines who lost their lives… as ‘suckers’ for getting killed.”

Trump denies that, but he’s accused of disrespecting American war heroes before. In 2015, Trump ridiculed late Senator John McCain (R-AZ), imprisoned and tortured for years in North Vietnam: “He’s not a war hero. I like people who weren’t captured.”

Shameful, disrespecting not just McCain, but ALL our POWs – especially since Trump used a dubious claim of bone spurs to AVOID military service.



In 2016, Trump criticized the Gold Star parents of Humayun Khan, an Army captain killed in Iraq – because they’re Muslims.



Trump recently disparaged U.S. military leaders, saying “they want to do nothing but fight wars so all those wonderful companies that make the bombs and make the planes and make everything else stay happy.”


In 2005, Trump was recorded saying “when you’re a star… you can do anything… grab ‘em by the p***y.”

He called 2016 opponent Hillary Clinton “a nasty woman”, among other things.

Recently, Trump’s Department of Justice took over his defense in a lawsuit accusing him of raping a woman in the mid-90s. At the time, Trump commented, “she’s not my type.” Adding insult to injury, taxpayers will now pay for his defense.


In 2016, Trump called campaign opponents insulting names: Republicans “Lyin’ Ted” (Cruz), “Little Marco” (Rubio), “Low-Energy Jeb” (Bush); Democratic candidates “Crazy Bernie” (Sanders), “Goofy Elizabeth” (Warren); and eventual nominee “Crooked Hillary” (Clinton).

Recently, Trump called Biden “a stupid person” and “against God”. Besides disrespectful, that second insult is false, since Biden is a devout Catholic. And ironic, since Trump is not an active member of any church.



Asked by a reporter in March if he wanted to address “Americans who are scared” about COVID, Trump attacked him as a “terrible reporter” who asked “a very nasty question”.



Trump’s long history of displaying DISRESPECT earns this score:  F



Former VP Biden, unlike Trump, has spent many years in public office – requiring respect across the aisle to be successful.

His friendship with McCain, 2008 Republican presidential nominee (against Biden’s President Obama), provides proof. Biden and McCain remained close friends for decades. Biden was asked to eulogize McCain at his funeral and serve as pallbearer – in contrast to Trump, who wasn’t invited and spitefully said, “we’re not going to support that loser’s funeral”, disrespecting McCain and POWs again.

Another example: Biden’s working relationship with highly-partisan Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and other Republicans.

Biden and McConnell respected each other, reaching compromises on a stimulus bill (saving the economy and ending 2009’s Great Recession) and a targeted extension of tax cuts (avoiding a threatened 2010 Senate shutdown).

Biden’s long history of displaying RESPECT earns this score:  A


Moderates, what does that word, R-E-S-P-E-C-T, mean to YOU? In the song, it means “give me my propers”. Let’s decide which candidate gives “propers” to EVERYBODY, including veterans, POWs, military leaders, women, opponents, and reporters – then VOTE.




* Aretha Franklin

** 1967

*** Otis Redding


Images: Google Images

Respect – Give It To Get It: Twitter

Respect – Hands: Respectful Relationships

Trump with umbrella: National Post

Trump at Family Leadership Summit: Politico

Gold Star parents and son: Daily Mail

Trump – Access Hollywood: YouTube

GOP Debate: NBC News

Trump at podium: Sun Sentinel

Biden and McCain:

McConnell and Biden: AFP via Getty Images

Redding and Franklin: 2Loud2OldMusic



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