letter to the editor

A ‘Gish Gallop’

Mon, 07/08/2024 - 3:00pm

Dear Editor:

What we saw on CNN last Thursday (June 27) was not a debate. It was a travesty, a grotesque imitation with intent to ridicule. It was never meant to be a grown-up conversation structured to enlighten us 60 million viewers about how the candidates would govern in a second term.

Trump shamelessly spewed 602 lies in 40 minutes – that’s a lie every 3.9 seconds. The CNN fact checker couldn’t keep up with him and neither of the CNN moderators challenged anything he said, though little that he said had any connection to the real world.

His rhetorical assault is known as a “Gish Gallop” – a gas lighting technique used by con men and domestic abusers to make coherent debate impossible. There is no known defense, and it is rarely seen in public because only sociopaths use it.

Trump called America a “hellscape,” the worst country in the world, and has already told us his plan for a second term:  dismantling of the government as we know it, vindictive retribution against those who disagree with him, deportation of millions of hard-working immigrants, destruction of reproductive health care for women, climate degradation, chaos and mayhem. He will be Dictator on Day One. 

How can we even imagine such a man as President again?  

Trump is the candidate who must be called to step down. 

Susan Stedman 

Westport Island