Sic transit gloria envy

In a recent effort to become more like the feminists, a number of people who ought to know better came up with a new sort of relativity theory that would have done Arthur and Gloria proud. Donald Trump, they concede, has committed adultery. King David and John Kennedy also committed adultery. People think well of King David, and of John Kennedy. Therefore, they say, in a strange sort of logic, people should think well of Trump.

But the flaw in the theory, as Ramesh Ponnuru points out, is that this is a strangely reductive conception of character, and that committing adultery was not the main thing that these people had done with their lives. Like Alexander Hamilton, Martin Luther King Jr., and Franklin Roosevelt, whose private lives also were not without blemish, the American president and the Biblical King had courage, resolution, knowledge and fortitude. They had built or saved nations, waged wars or fought in them, seriously thought about aspects of government, and fought some of history’s more inhuman and brutal regimes.

Trump, by contrast, has been and done none of these. He is a coward, a creep and a vulgarian who attracts a large number of bigoted followers and spent much of his life running scams.