In the matter of Donald Trump: A response to the responders

Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally last week in Charlotte. (Evan Vucci/Associated Press)

It is becoming increasingly difficult to have a civil conversation across the electoral battle lines, and the events of the past week have hardly made things any easier. But I meant it when I said, in my earlier posting (“An open letter to Volokh Conspiracy readers who are Trump supporters“), that I was hoping to engage readers who are Donald Trump supporters in something resembling a civil conversation. And insofar as a conversation is necessarily a two-way street, I thought it incumbent upon me to give some sort of response/reaction to the comments I received.

The posting generated more comments than is the norm here for the Volokh Conspiracy — 718 comments at last count, more than anything I’ve written in the past — but I did read them (though I admit that toward the end I was skipping the replies, and the replies to the replies), and I did try to get at least a sense of what Trump supporters are thinking.

Anger
Fear
Sadness
Disgust
Joy
Anger
Fear
Sadness
Disgust
Joy

Keywords in this article

Keyword Sentiment Site Avg. Compared
better president + 0.24 0.24
0.00
Trump’s stability + 0.00 0.00
0.00
Trump’s hands + 0.00 -0.04
0.04
Evan Vucci/Associated Press + 0.00 0.00
0.00
nuclear arsenal + 0.00 -0.04
0.04
U.S. nuclear arsenal + 0.00 0.02
-0.02
misbegotten 12-year-old boy + 0.00 0.00
0.00
scientist David Gelernter + 0.00 0.00
0.00
Trump -0.12 -0.07
-0.05
electoral battle lines -0.24 -0.24
0.00
civil conversation -0.27 -0.56
0.29
Donald Trump supporters -0.31 -0.18
-0.13
Trump supporters -0.34 -0.09
-0.25
personal idiosyncratic threshold -0.38 -0.38
0.00
nuclear button -0.39 -0.03
-0.36
Donald Trump -0.45 -0.14
-0.31
Clinton -0.45 -0.18
-0.27
Volokh Conspiracy readers -0.46 -0.41
-0.05
hypothetical Satan-Clinton matchup -0.54 -0.54
0.00
Mr. Trump -0.57 -0.08
-0.49