If the late, great Ronald Reagan spoke of “morning in America,” Donald Trump spoke darkly, on the last day of the Republican National Convention, of “Midnight in America.” By delivering a dire speech about a country misgoverned by its elites, beleaguered by terrorists abroad, and ravaged by rampant crime, a bad economy, illegal immigrants, and bad trade deals at home, he perfectly captured the zeitgeist of the United States in the summer of 2016.

The optimism that existed in the speech consisted of a number of promises of how Donald Trump will personally deal with all of the problems afflicting America and lead it, presumably, back into the light.

He proposes to be the “law and order” president to crack down on cop killing criminals. Trump will lower taxes, scour the government of officious bureaucrats, and renegotiate trade deals to bring back jobs and a roaring economy. He will build the wall to keep out illegal immigrants and the drugs and crimes they bring with them. He will completely destroy ISIS. He will appoint judges and justices who will follow the law and adhere to the Constitution.

And, of course, Trump’s opponent (he never mentioned “Corrupt Hillary” by name) will do none of these things and will keep America in darkness.

She who was rarely named but must be feared has set the Middle East ablaze and would likely do that to the rest of the planet if allowed to.

The speech had the virtue of having more than a hint of truth to it, at least in the perspective of the people Trump is appealing to. America has traveled a long, dark road from the heady “hope and change” year of 2008. It is now demanding that its interests should come first.

Trump will do that and more.

Donald Trump was preceded by his daughter Ivanka, as effective an advocate for the candidate as all of his other children. From what she told the audience, Trump is the wisest father, the cleverest businessman, the fairest dealer, and the most compassionate man who ever walked the Earth. Nothing of the man who savaged his opponents, real and imaginary, in vulgar language existed in her narrative.

Election 2016 has become personalized, in the minds of Trump and his supporters. The packed audience in the arena ate it up and, presumably, so did tens of millions of Americans chafing under disenfranchisement and economic malaise.

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