Don’t like his ugly comments about a TV personality, political rival or even a political rival’s spouse? Well, he’s only “counterpunching” after someone else “started it.” Trump is ganged-up-upon underdog, not instigator.
Disapprove of his pro-violence rally rhetoric? He’s just protecting his beleaguered voters against those “big, strong, powerful” Black Lives Matter activists, Bernie bros and other “bad dudes.”
Find his xenophobic remarks about our allies, trading partners and immigrants repulsive? He’s merely defending his supporters from foreigners who prey on them economically, culturally and even sexually. (Those Mexican border-crossers are mostly rapists, after all.)
To hear Trump tell it, he and his supporters are the most beaten-down victims this country has ever seen. The system is rigged to keep them from winning, designed to make the weak even weaker. They have been robbed, disenfranchised, bullied and insulted. With the odds so stacked against them, they — and their leader — are not only permitted but also morally obligated to “punch back” as ferociously as they can.