I’ve been watching Fran Lebowitz on NETFLIX, listening to Colin Jost on Audible, and reading The Order of the Day.

The first two, big fun.

The third, in the words of the BBC: “Extraordinary, disturbingly relevant.”

(“. . . Goering had had it up to here with those stupid Austrians.  Why couldn’t they just leave him the hell alone, already!  But Hitler saw things differently.  Miklas had better accept that resignation, he screeched, a telephone receiver in each hand.  That’s an order!  It’s strange how the most dyed-in-the-wool tyrants still vaguely respect due process, as if they want to make it appear as though they aren’t abusing procedure, even while riding roughshod over every convention.”)

The other thing I’ve been doing:  trying to figure out how to get Still Trumpers to reconsider.

It won’t be easy — witness A QAnon ‘Digital Soldier’ Marches On, Undeterred by Theory’s Unraveling.

(This particular soldier, a woman in her 50s with a Harvard degree.)

These four minutes make you think: which America are we?

We are both.

But look:

Objectively, either Trump did win by a landslide or he didn’t.  (He didn’t.)

Objectively, either millions of good people were tricked into believing he did or they weren’t.  (They were.)

Someone has to be correct here.  The truth cannot lie “someplace in the middle.”

The earth is flat, as almost everyone once believed, or it is round, as almost everyone believes now.

The answer isn’t based on an opinion poll — it’s based on what’s true.

The people caught up in Trump’s cult truly believe they’re on the right side of all this.  I don’t blame them for getting scammed, I blame Trump for scamming them.

And all those, like Rupert Murdoch and Ted Cruz and Fox News — and Zuckerberg — who knowingly enabled him.

It’s so hard.

A college classmate emails that he’s gotten the following from several of his friends over the past few days, and that it sums up how he feels, too:

Win, lose or fraud…President Trump. I just want to say thank you for the last four years. 

Thank you for making it cool to be an American again.  [Many of us thought it was cool when, say, we saved ourselves and the world from a deadly Ebola pandemic. Or when we saved ourselves and the world from the global depression on the edge of which it teetered at the end of 2008.  Or when we led the world in adopting the Paris Climate Accord.] 

Thank you for showing us that we don’t need to be under China’s thumb anymore economically, or any other way. [By scuttling Obama’s TPP, we handed China a huge win.  Then imposed tariffs on average Americans buying Chinese goods.  And drove American farmers to suicide.]   

Thank you for one of the strongest economies we’ve ever experienced in my lifetime.  [Trump is the only president other than Herbert Hoover to have lost jobs on his watch.  Fewer jobs were added in his first three years than in Obama’s last three — and Obama did that while bringing the deficit under control, while Trump exploded it even before Covid.]  

Thank you for all you have done for the minority communities.  [If true, why didn’t they vote to re-elect him?]

Thank you for making it feel good to love our country and to be a proud patriot again. [Many of us were prouder before Trump began siding with journalist-murdering dictators and making ours the only country on earth to exit the Paris Climate Accord.]

Thirteen more thank you’s follow — those are just the first five — for each of which one could offer a different point of view.

But my goal is not to get Trump fans to feel about Trump as I do.

For me, it would be enough to have my classmate say . . .

<< Well, he did a lot of good things — and MAYBE some not so good things — but either way, Biden won.  In Georgia, the closest of the contested states, the paper ballots were counted and recounted (and recounted again) by Republicans who themselves had hoped Trump would win. >>

So, just as the crowd on the Mall at Trump’s Inauguration was NOT “the largest in history” — an objective fact — so, too, sadly, did not enough Trump supporters turn out to reelect him.

We shouldn’t be gleeful watching rioters storm the Capitol for the first time since the War of 1812.

We shouldn’t cheer as the Confederate Flag is waved inside the Capitol.

That’s not the kind of patriotism that will make us stronger or more prosperous.

We shouldn’t try to kill Nancy Pelosi and Mike Pence . . . or tell people Hillary was running a pedophile ring out of the basement of a pizza parlor that had no basement . . . or tell them that FBI directors can’t be trusted but Putin can . . . or that the Wall Street Journal can’t be trusted but that Q can.

Let’s start looking instead for common ground, of which there is just so, so much.