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Scoot's Blog

Tune in to "The Scoot Show" for lively, candid discussions about news, politics and culture with WWL's "Radical Moderate!"

Weekdays 1pm-4pm

Twitter: @scootwwl
Email: scoot@wwl.com
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Scoot: Did Fox News - not the "liberal media" - sway the election?

President Obama said in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine that Fox News helped sway the election in favor of Donald Trump. At a time when fear that the "liberal media" controls the outcome of elections is widespread, how could Fox News have helped Trump win? Does this mean the fears over the "liberal media" are unfounded?

We talk about the relationship between mass media and society often on our afternoon talk show, and this is a perfect time to set the record straight.

I have always argued that even if the media is, collectively, more liberal than conservative, and if those biases are apparent in the presentation of news and talk show topics, that does not mean the media has the power to determine the outcome of elections.

The media is more a reflection of the audience than something that dictates ideology. It is known that most members of the audience tend to seek the media outlet that best reflects their opinions as a way of confirming their beliefs. It's called "confirmation bias." Put simply, the overwhelming percentage of the audience that tunes into the Fox News, CNN or MSBNC chooses those news sources because their opinions are represented as opposed to seeking a news source that challenges their beliefs.

If the goal of the average listener is to tune into the media source that represents their views, then it is fair to say that the media more reflects the audience than dictates opinions. If the media reflects the audience, which I believe it does, then the fact that Fox News is on in bars and restaurants, as President Obama observed, means that the audience in the bars and restaurants want to watch Fox News.

Fox News did not determine the outcome of the election. A large swath of America between the coasts stood up and demanded change, while too many Democrats expressed complacency by choosing not to vote.

President Obama also blamed Clinton's loss to Democrats lacking a grass-roots effort, which was not the problem. Throughout the campaign, the Democrats' ground game and the Party's political machinery was praised as being superior to the Republican Party's efforts to reach individual voters.

President Obama is doing what many do, and that is finding something to blame other than the rejection of ideology. The Republicans did it, and now the Democrats are doing it.

Republicans have argued that their candidates didn't win because of the influence of the "liberal media." Now, President Obama suggests that Hillary lost because of the influence of Fox News. If the President is wrong to blame the media, then conservatives are also wrong to blame the media!

America changes, and when America changes there is always one group that refuses to accept or even acknowledge the change.
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Scoot: Bourbon Street and the real problem no one wants to talk about

The shots fired on Bourbon Street early Sunday morning of Thanksgiving weekend were the first shots I’ve heard fired during an act of violence, but they were shots heard around the country.

The shooting on Bourbon Street late Saturday night/early Sunday morning quickly became a national news story.

Bourbon Street is one of the most popular streets in America and if you haven’t been on it – you’ve heard about it.  Bourbon Street is also known one of the country’s most popular party spots and the contrast of a shooting in an area known for fun and frivolity leads to creates a compelling headline.

Ten people were shot – one died.  The victims were described at eight men and two women between the ages of 20 – 37.

Sitting on my sofa in my downtown apartment about 1:30 am Sunday morning, I heard the barrage of gunfire that at first sounded like a pack of firecrackers going off, but I knew that it was gunfire.  I jumped up and went to my window and saw groups of people running down Carondelet away from Bourbon Street.

I knew I was safe in my apartment, but there was still something surreal about hearing the actual gunfire and then witnessing the aftermath.  People were running away from the French Quarter in apparent desperation, the sirens of police, fire and EMS vehicles drowned out my television and the number of flashing lights confirmed that something very serious had just occurred a few blocks from my apartment.

I was reminded that so many people in New Orleans, and around the country, live in neighborhoods where the sounds of gunfire are all too common., but to experience this for the first time is startling.

After I heard the shots, I went on the WWL Radio Facebook page and did a live broadcast of what I was seeing and hearing and also posted the video on my page, Scoot on the Air.  


Around midnight that evening, I was walking back to my apartment from parking my car and I sensed something unsettling about the crowd on the street that night.  I have always welcomed the Bayou Classic crowd to my neighborhood.  It’s crowded, but it’s fun.  I can’t really explain it, but I was unusually uncomfortable walking home that night and got a feeling that everyone was not in town to enjoy the game and the celebration.  Sadly, my fear was confirmed.

NOPD is reporting that two men got into an argument and then began shooting at each other, hitting innocent bystanders in the crowd.  This happened in the 100 block of Bourbon – the first block of Bourbon off Canal.

This is a block known for the gathering of groups.  There is less concentration of businesses and activity, but always a large number of people, many choosing to hang out in that block rather than venture down to where the action is on Bourbon Street.  I always found that curious.

The first block of Bourbon is not extremely well lit and there were high-powered spotlights further down Bourbon Street, but not in the first block.  There’s no way of knowing for sure if spotlights would have prevented the shooting, but it’s never a mistake to light up an area known as a spot away from the party area to congregate.

The shooting proves that more police officers on the street are not necessarily the answer to preventing crime.  Near the spot where the shooting occurred, NOPD had about 40 officers present.  This was the night of the big Bayou Classic between Southern University and Grambling State.  A large crowd was expected.  It seems obvious that the types of individuals who are prone to this kind of criminal activity don’t care if the police are nearby.  A police officer in another city was shot in front of the police station.  More cops are good, but more cops will not solve or prevent the problems we now have to deal with.

Following a high-profile shooting like the one Sunday morning on a packed Bourbon Street, people will tell you who or what is to blame and the excuses range from “there are too many guns on the streets” to “there are not enough jobs” to “there are not enough fathers raising the children that result from sex.”  All of these excuses – and they are excuses – fail to address the real problem.

According to NOPD, the shooting erupted when two men got into an argument.  Today, we hear countless stories of gun deaths or injuries resulting an argument where the only way to settle the argument was to pull out a gun – usually illegally obtained – and shoot someone.  That is the part of the problem that too few are willing to address.  Shootings often result from two people who have been conditioned to believe that they only way to settle an argument is with a gun.  That’s not a problem with the police or politicians – that’s a problem with society.

New Orleans businessman Sidney Torres suggested that it’s time to establish metal detector checkpoints at all entrances to a certain stretch of Bourbon Street.  That does not address the problem with individuals in our society, but it would make Bourbon Street safer for tourists and those of us who consider that part of their neighborhood.

There are constitutional issues to consider and there will be a strong protest from many gun activists.  There have also been stabbings on Bourbon Street so removing guns will not make the crown jewel of New Orleans completely safe, but the ease with which some people will use a gun to settle an argument should cut down on the crime and the criminal element that goes to the French Quarter because they have a gun to use to protect their rep or their illegal trade.

But whether there are checkpoints to enter Bourbon Street or not, the real problem is that our society has failed to set standards that do not allow individuals to instinctively think that a gun is the only answer to life.
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Scoot: Surviving Thanksgiving politics

The traditional vision of a Thanksgiving gathering includes family and friends gathered around a table with a golden browned turkey, stuffing spilling out of the turkey, green bean casserole, yams, pumpkin pie and whatever else is part of your Thanksgiving feast.

Thanksgiving is a time to reflect and give thanks with family and friends.  But a peaceful image of Thanksgiving is often contrary to the chaotic reality that most experience at their Thanksgiving dinner!

The Thanksgiving ordeal begins with the challenge of getting there. If traveling by plane – airports are crowded and lines are long.  This is also the time of year when a lot of amateur travelers board planes and many have kids who don’t know how to act on a plane.

For the record, it’s not that society has become less tolerant of children – it’s that society has become less tolerant of parents who can’t control their kids while traveling. DO NOT let your child kick the seat of the passenger in front of them – DO NOT allow them to lie in or run up and down the aisle.  Kids will be kids, but they should all learn to be respectful.  It’s simple – control your children or stay home. Other cultures do a better job than Americans when it comes to controlling children in public settings which proves it can be done.

If traveling by car – prepare your children for the reality of the trip.  With today’s phones, tablets and games, movies, Facebook and texting - no child should complain about sitting in one spot for hours, after all they often do just that at home.  If your child does complain about being bored – use that opportunity to teach them that sometimes life can be boring – learn to deal with it!

Teaching kids to deal with being bored sometimes is preparing them to deal with life.  You might actually use the opportunity of being together in the car to have a real conversation with your kids and give them a chance to talk to you. Make time to just talk with no distractions from electronic wizardry and that mean you stay off your phone, too! 

Talk about the trip, the sights and talk about America. Tell them things you think about and ask them what they think about. You might be surprised what your kids are thinking about and what they already know.

After surviving the ordeal to getting to your destination, then you must deal with the madness of the Thanksgiving dinner. The house will be crowded with family members and friends who don’t see each other often and there will be those family members that don’t get along. Not everyone in the same family shares the same views on political and social issues.  Political ideology is thicker than blood and following the results of the most contentious election in modern history, there will be those who insist on being proud their candidate won or speak doom and gloom about our immediate future as a nation.

Avoiding talking about politics during Thanksgiving is not an easy task.  There are countless things that will inspire debates about politics at the Thanksgiving table.

The price of the turkey could segue into a debate on the economy and what will happen to the economy under a Trump Administration.  And if anyone asks for the “right wing” or the “left wing” of the turkey there is sure to be a conversation about the political right and political left.

And the cranberry sauce is red, the color of conservative states, and there is no blue food on the table to give equal representation the liberal states. 

Why is it that some relatives feel the need to set other family members straight on their political thinking?  Warning – you cannot change their minds and they probably can’t change yours. So, admit that the only result of those Thanksgiving debates will be strained relations.  It is much more difficult to resist the temptation to tell your relative or friend at Thanksgiving why they are wrong than it is to debate their point.

This Thanksgiving, try to be tolerant of the relatives that feel the need to brag about their lives and their kids and though it’s terribly rude, try to tolerate even the family members that must talk loudly on their cellphone to make sure everyone hears their conversation. And since you can’t train their children during this brief gathering and you can’t give them a lesson in parenting, then ignore the behavior of their children which makes it obvious they really have no control over their kids. Whatever you observe will make for a great conversation on the trip home.

In life, our expectations often supersede reality.  Rather than envision that traditional, peaceful Thanksgiving setting with family, friends and a bountiful of food spread on the decorated table, be realistic enough to prepare yourself and your family for the collusion of differing personalities and opinions that you inevitably encounter once a year at Thanksgiving time.

Happy Thanksgiving from “Scoot in the Afternoon!”
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Scoot: Conservatives, liberals coming together on Thanksgiving

The election is over and Donald Trump is the president-elect and not everyone is happy with the outcome.  But it goes beyond not everyone being happy with the outcome – this election has exposed just how deeply divided America is in 2016. 

We are divided along political, religious, racial, sexual orientation and gender lines and from there we are further divided into countless subgroups.  The sad truth is that we are hard pressed to justify calling ourselves the United States of America.  In the climate of the great divide in America, can we approach Thanksgiving as a bipartisan holiday?  

The origin of Thanksgiving was not based on politics or religion and actual documents are scarce and do not provide solid proof of specific details of the first Thanksgiving, but notes passed along through history do give us a hint of that first Thanksgiving.  

In 1621, the new settlers from England and Native Americans came together to give thanks for the first harvest in the New World.  From the accounts passed down over the years, about 90 Native Americans and 53 Pilgrims celebrated the first Thanksgiving.  It is believed that the Native Americans helped the new settlers survive in the New World and for that the settlers were grateful and wanted to give thanks.

The pilgrims and Native Americans were two totally different groups with different customs, different appearances and very different lifestyles.  If those two groups could come together to give thanks – then I would think that conservatives and liberals, whites and blacks, Christians and Jews, males and females and straights and gays can all come together on this Thanksgiving in the same spirit of unity.

It might not be sensational and it might not generate a lot of buzz on the airwaves, but it is important for us to step back from the bitter political debates that separate us and take time to appreciate all we do have in common.  We may see different paths to our goals of happiness and success in America, but our goals are essentially the same.

Even if it is for just one day – Thanksgiving Day – let us come together as families, friends and as a nation for the simple purpose of giving thanks for the many common things we share as Americans. 

It’s a human flaw is to always think about what we don’t have in life, but it is an important human quality to appreciate all we have been blessed with.  Look not at those who have more – look at how much you do have.

If we all do come together this Thanksgiving like the Pilgrims and Native Americans did in 1621 – let’s hope and pray in the years to follow that we treat each other with a little more respect than the early settlers treated the Native Americans after that first Thanksgiving!
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Scoot: Nov 22 - the day the music of the Boomer generation was born

In the years prior to The Beatles’ arrival in America, there were social debates that were beginning to define a new direction for America.  These battles pitted the Moral Majority against activists that were fighting for more personal freedoms and equality.  

As the 1960s began, America’s Moral Majority condemned the use of birth control pills on the basis that removing the consequence of pregnancy from casual sex would cause sexual promiscuity to escalate.  

In 1961, the use of artificial birth control was a crime in Connecticut and a lawsuit over the constitutionality over declaring birth control pills illegal went to the Supreme Court.  The High Court would ultimately rule that banning birth control pills was unconstitutional based on right to privacy. 

In 1962 and 1963, two landmark decisions by the Supreme Court banned school-led prayers in public schools.  The decisions to ban school-led prayers are still viewed by many in today’s new Establishment as the flashpoint in time when the social and moral demise of America began.  

Along with the legalization of artificial birth control and the banning of school-led prayers from public schools, two significant controversies that signaled a nation on the threshold of change, the fight for equal rights for blacks in America was strongly supported by a young generation that sensed the cruel injustice of segregation. 

Adding to the social and legal debates about freedom and equality in the early 60s, there was the ever-present threat of a nuclear war that could destroy the United States.  Schools held drills to instruct young students what to do if the Soviet Union (Russia today) dropped a nuclear bomb on our country.  There were a few families in my neighborhood that had bomb shelters installed in their backyards that would help them survive a nuclear war.  

The fear of instant destruction was part of daily life for a young generation that may have seemed too young to understand the consequences of that threat. A young generation was quietly and subconsciously absorbing the constant talk of nuclear war on the news and in living room conversations with parents and neighbors.  In those days, parents did not consider the impact the news or negative conversations were having on their children’s generation.  It was a different time.

Though a young generation might have appeared to lack a true understanding of the potential consequences, I have a vivid memory of sitting in my grammar school class drawing a detailed picture of U.S. warships surrounding Cuba during the tense Cuban Missile Crisis.  I may not have been aware of the specifics, but I was aware of the fact that my security and the security of my family and this country were facing the threat of destruction if not resolved.
 
As the Cuban Missile Crisis played out on a public stage, a young generation was subconsciously sensing the ambience of an unsafe world that their parent’s generation ruled.  This was the mood in America that just prior to the moment that would prove to be the tipping point in the birth of the anti-Establishment generation of the 60s and the soundtrack of their lives.

On November 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated.  America and the world were stunned by the news that the President of the United States had been murdered in public in front of countless witnesses.  If the technology of today’s media and social media were part of the world in 1963 – the President of the United States would have been killed on live television as a nation watched.  However, even with the media of that era, it wasn’t long before America witnessed the visuals of the assassination.  While a young generation sat in the background, their parents didn’t realize how that moment would dramatically change their children’s generation.

The assassination of the President carried a clear message to an innocent young generation – the Establishment was no longer able to provide security and a sense of security.  Though the effects of the news of the assassination may have been subtle and even subconscious to a young generation, the effects were profound.  The unsettling debates about equality and personal freedoms, the threat of nuclear war and then the assassination of the President of the United States were quietly shook the foundation of a young generation.

With the seed of distrust of the Establishment planted in the collective subconscious of a young generation, their minds were fertile and waiting to be tilled by anything they could use to distinguish their generation from their parents’ generation, which they felt had let them down.

Less than three months after the assassination of President Kennedy, The Beatles hit America on February 7, 1964.  On February 9, 1964, television host Ed Sullivan spoke the words that would introduce a new identity for an entire generation – “Ladies and gentlemen, The Beatles!”  And in that moment, a young generation had unknowingly discovered the beginning of a new identity that would lead to a rebellion and the title of the anti-Establishment generation.

The Beatles’ appearance and sound defied the Establishment.  Looking back at pictures of that young rock band from England, it is challenging to think that their haircuts and music were so revolutionary, but relative to the times, The Beatles represented a defiance that would help a young generation distinguish itself from their parents’ generation – the Establishment. 

Pictures of the early Beatles, based on today’s world, show a group of clean-cut lads in tailored suits who appear to be anything but rebellious.  However, in the context of the world in 1964, their mop-top, unruly hair styles and their unique, new sound were rebellious and revolutionary.  There is always a tendency to justify that past trends and behavior are tame in comparison to present day, however, as with the hair styles of The Beatles, everything must be judged against the backdrop of society at the time in which it was first introduced.

Today’s Establishment is the anti-Establishment generation from the 60s.  

The media reflected the negative reaction of parents in criticizing the appearance and sound of The Beatles. The Beatles have been credited with changing America and creating a young generation that rebelled against the Establishment like no other young generation, but the social mood of the country that was defined by the debates over the Pill, prayer in public schools, the fight for personal freedoms and equality, the ever-present threat of nuclear war and ultimately the assassination of the President of the United States, created the perfect moment for something a young generation could rally around as they declared their independence from the Establishment they had grown to innately distrust. 

The Beatles are often credited with starting the anti-Establishment generation of the 60s, but in the historic moments before The Beatles arrived in America, the foundation for a rebellious generation had been silently forming and it was on this day, November 22, 1963, when President John F. Kenney was assassinated, that everything changed.

Today is the day the music of the Baby Boomer generation was actually born.
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Scoot: Poor losers, poor winners after Trump victory

The concept of being a good looser and a good winner transcends sports.  That concept should encompass every competition in life.  There are times when it is easy to be a good loser or a good winner, but when the competition is intense and combative, being a good loser or a good winner can be challenging.

The 2016 presidential election between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton was the most intense and combative election in memory for anyone who was alive to bear witness to the competition.  It was fierce.  

I often talked about what I anticipated to be a very tense and vocal America after the election because of the bitterness that would be felt by the losing side.  Immediately after the election there were signs of grace and acceptance from Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton and even President Obama, who fiercely campaigned for Clinton.  But there appears to be less grace and acceptance among American citizens.  

One would think that supporters of each candidate would follow the lead of their candidate’s temperament after the election, but that has not been the case.  Less than two weeks after Donald Trump was declared president-elect, there were two examples of poor losers and poor winners.

Friday night, Vice President-elect Mike Pence attended the award-winning play “Hamilton” in New York with his daughter and some of her cousins.  During the curtain call, Brandon Dixon, one of the actors, addressed the VP-elect directly when he said, “We, sir, are the diverse America who are alarmed and anxious that your new administration will not protect us, our planet, our children, our parents, or defend us and uphold our inalienable rights.”  Dixon plays the part of Aaron Burr, America’s third vice-president.  Dixon went on to say, “We truly hope this show had inspired you to uphold our American values and work on behalf of all of us.  All of us.”

Vice President-elect Pence began to leave before the comments were concluded, but was able to hear the full content of the remarks.  Pence was very gracious on the Fox Network show with Chris Wallace Sunday morning when he had nothing negative to say about the actor and actually showed respect for his right to freedom of speech.  Donald Trump, however, tweeted that the vice president-elect was harassed and demanded an apology from the cast.

The message from the actor to the vice president-elect was a good message for any incoming president, but that was not the time or the place to deliver that message.  Brandon Dixon represented the cast in “Hamilton” when he took advantage of the opportunity after curtain call to directly address Pence.

This election was so contentious that some Americans cannot resist looking for opportunities to bring politics into situations that have been politic-free spaces.  Dixon was an example of a poor loser.

The definition of a poor winner is a winner that is incapable of accepting a victory graciously.  A poor winner is a winner that looks for opportunities to boast about the victory to the point of “shoving the win in the face” of the losers.  It isn’t enough to win – what’s important is to voraciously taunt the losers.

An example of poor winners comes in the form of those individuals who have gone out of their way to get Starbucks baristas to call out the name “Trump” in Starbucks locations. 
 
Starbucks is perceived as a liberal company with liberal-leaning top executives.  Some have decided it would be fun to target Starbucks by telling the barista their name is “Trump” when ordering coffee.  It’s tradition at Starbucks to ask the customer’s name, which is shouted out to everyone when their coffee is ready.  By saying their name is “Trump,” they force the baristas to shout out “Trump” in Starbucks.

Technically, the Trump supporting customers at Starbucks were lying when they said their name was “Trump” and I guess there’s a degree of dishonesty in the scheme, but the idea of getting baristas at a company, like Starbucks, to shout out the name of President-elect Trump is funny to some.  But it seems like a classic example of a poor winner.  It’s an example of shoving the win in the face of the losers.  Shouldn’t it be enough to win?

It’s easy to be a poor loser, but it’s also easy to be a poor winner.  The temptation to be a poor winner is enhanced by the overwhelming sense of confidence one feels once they become the victor, especially if the victor overcame the position of being an underdog.  

When adults are poor losers or poor winners they are no different from the kids who are criticized for being poor losers or poor winners.  But we should be teaching them how to act in the face of victory or defeat – not actually acting like kids.
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Scoot: I gotta feeling "tonight's gonna be a good night" for Saints!

Over the past few seasons, the Saints have been a team that has not always risen to the occasion, but I have a feeling that tonight we will see a Saints team that is different.

The last minute crushing and controversial defeat by the Denver Broncos Sunday in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome would give Saints teams in the past few years a reason to feel and play demoralized, but there is something about the way this Saints team is playing and responding to adversity that should give the Who Dat Nation reason to feel good about the game tonight against the Panthers in Carolina.

Drew Brees has been different.  Sean Payton has been different.  There is talk of a unified chemistry among the players in the locker room that gives a sense that complacency has been replaced with determination.

The Saints have come back strong after a 0 – 3 start to the season and the loss against the Broncos and other teams this year have been both heartbreaking and encouraging.  If there was a turning point, it was the game in San Diego against the Chargers.

Drew Brees returned to San Diego for the first time since he was a Charger and he appeared to have an added incentive to win that game. Brees also maintains a home in San Diego and spends part of the off-season there.  For Brees, personal motivation was obvious from the opening kickoff.  The Saints beat the Chargers 35-34.

It is true that the Chargers made fatal mistakes toward the end of the game, but the Saints did show signs of determination that we have not always seen.

The Saints lost to the Broncos because they were not prepared to respond to a set up to block the kick.  It can be argued that the Broncos player that picked up the blocked kick stepped out of bounds, but it should never reached that point.  After the game Sunday, the Saints were down, but ready to play that game out of their system.  Brees said he was glad it was a short week because they wanted to get right back on the field.

One frustration Saints fans still have with the team is what appears to be a lack of focus and discipline.  The mistakes made by the Saints are avoidable and usually the result of a lack of concentration or lapses in effort.  

However, there is now a sense of “we suffered a defeat – but we are not defeated.”  What is most encouraging is that the Saints seem eager to prove they are a team destined to be in the playoffs – and that’s not something you can say about the Saints the past few seasons.

And the Saints will be wearing the visually appealing all-white uniforms, which I think should become part of their uniform rotation.  Expect the Saints to have an attitude in the game against the Panthers tonight.  A bad attitude!

Quoting the Black Eyed Peas song:  “I gotta feeling that tonight’s going to be a good night!”
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Scoot: How will voters react to "Trump Change?"

Since becoming the president-elect, Donald Trump appears to have changed.  Trump seems less insistent on preciously fulfilling all of his campaign promises that attracted some, and offended others, during the campaign.

In an interview with Leslie Stahl of CBS’ “60 Minutes,”  Donald Trump admitted there may not be a wall like the one he said would be built during the campaign.  Trump also stopped short of saying that 11 million illegal immigrants currently in America will be immediately deported as promised.

During one of the heated debates with Hillary Clinton, Trump said directly to her that if elected president he would appoint a special prosecutor to investigate her use of a private server and that she could end up in jail.  

At many rallies when Trump would talk about going after Clinton the crowds chanted, “Lock her up, lock her up!”  But Sunday night, Donald Trump said that the Clintons are not bad people and was no longer insistent on a special prosecutor to look into her email controversy and left that only as an option.

Donald Trump ran as a candidate who was not a politician and his success was built on the idea that as a non-politician, he was telling it like it is and was not making campaign promises that would be ignored if elected.  But, now that Trump is the president-elect, there are signs that some of his campaign promises may not be fulfilled as promised.  

If Trump does change and become more presidential and less bombastic, will his diehard supporters condemn him for not following through on the big and bold campaign promises that led to his victory on Election Day?  Or, will they remain so loyal that they will forgive him and justify his decisions as decisions that needed to be made now that he is going to be the President of the United States?

Since many apparently voted for Trump because they thought he was the better alternative to Clinton, even if they were not hardcore Trump supporters, there is a large group of Trump voters that is thrilled he is not standing by all of the divisive campaign promises he made during the campaign.

The day after the election I commented on the show that Trump seemed different in his victory speech in the early morning hours and in an interview later and that what we may be witnessing is how sometimes the job can define the person.

Donald Trump is a brilliant marketer, and that’s a great way to describe a successful politician.  Trump obviously knew how to tap into the anti-political status quo sentiment in America and he now appears to better understand the powerful and honorable position to which he has been elected.

Successful people know how to allow a position to help define who they are and how they will lead.  For those who have been distraught since Trump won the election – the idea that the job of the presidency will redefine Donald Trump is welcoming.

But in a final irony – Donald Trump may be proving that he, too, was a candidate who was will to say whatever it took to get elected.  It will be interesting to watch how voters react to the Trump change.
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Scoot: If the liberal media is so powerful, how did Trump win?

There is an organized and coordinated effort on the part of the liberal media to make certain Hillary Clinton wins the election!  The slanted reporting by the liberal media hides or downplays damaging information about Hillary, while highlighting any negative information about Trump!  This country is being controlled by a liberal media elite and the major corporations that own the media! 

These were common themes that ran throughout the campaign and I often defended the media against those who insisted that the liberal media was working to elect Hillary Clinton and there was nothing the citizens could do about it.

If the liberal media is as powerful and influential as many argue, then how did Donald Trump win the election?  

The discussion about the liberal media came up often on the show during the election and in particular, in the final month before Election Day.  I consistently made the point that the media, or the liberal media in the minds of many, does not have the power to determine the outcome of elections.  My point was always met with the rebuttal that many Americans are uninformed and will blindly follow media.  I countered that point with the fact that the fear of a liberal media influencing elections has been around for several decades, and during that time Republicans won the White House.  

Those with bold opinions that are proven to be flawed never want to recognize they were wrong after the fact.  In the case of the widely held belief that the biased liberal media would ensure a Clinton victory, will those who so vehemently argued that the liberal media controlled the outcome of elections recognize that their argument was without foundation?

I have always admitted that the media, collectively, leans left, but there are now enough right leaning media outlets to provide balance.  The media leans left as a result of the individuals who, throughout history, have chosen a career in media and not because there is an orchestrated corporate conspiracy.  It is also the audience’s opinions that are reflected in the media.

The desire to confirm one’s opinions and political ideology drives individuals to various media outlets.  The goal on the part of the masses is to have their own bias confirmed – not seek media that forces them to consider facts and realities that are inconvenient to their point-of-view.

This is not an “I-told-you-so-moment” – but this is a moment to think about the erroneous arguments that the liberal media is controlling the outcome of elections.  If the liberal media has the power many proclaim it has – how did Donald Trump win the election?

It may be human nature to place blame on something when you’re wrong, but that doesn’t mean the blame is justified.  There is a long list of reasons why Hillary lost the election to Trump and none of them should include the liberal media.  Fact:  if the liberal media were as influential as many argue – Trump would not be president-elect.

If you have been made to fear the liberal media, Trump’s victory should convince you that the media is not responsible for the personal opinions that drive individuals to make decisions about candidates and other important issues.

If a Democrat wins it is not because the liberal media influenced the outcome of the election – it might just be because enough Americans believed that was the best candidate.

Trump won the election because enough Americans believed he was the best candidate.  Only time will tell us if he is the right candidate.

Photo via USA Today
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Scoot: Trump wins the White House - how will we act now?

It is appropriate that a bizarre campaign concludes with a bizarre ending.  Today is the “day after the election” and Donald Trump is the president-elect of the United States of America!

It was inevitable that one group of voters would be distraught today as a result of the outcome of the election and that is certainly the case.  The anticipation of a victory early in the evening at the Clinton headquarters in New York turned to tears and dismay on the faces of her supporters.

The level of excitement at the Clinton headquarters was inspired by the polls going into the election yesterday.  The polls were wrong.  But why were the polls wrong in projecting the winner?

It is obvious now that there was a large contingent of voters that were not measured by the pollsters and in the privacy of the voting booth cast their vote for Trump.  But why were the polls wrong?

I often talk about the how judgmental Americans have become and I believe it was the fear of judgment that concealed the underground Trump vote.  The polls may have been wrong because many Americans feared judgment of their choice for president to the degree that they did not want to be honest with the pollsters and admit they were voting for Trump, but once alone in the voting booth – they voted for Trump.

Trump even did better with the Latino vote than Mitt Romney in 2012.  There were so many extraordinary things about the results.  Going into election night, I’m sure the majority of Republicans would have agreed to let the popular vote, not the electoral vote, determine the winner, but as of midday Wednesday, Hillary Clinton was leading in the popular vote and Donald Trump had won the electoral vote.  Now, those same Republicans are completely satisfied with the electoral vote determining the outcome of presidential elections.

Where does America go from here?  It is as important to be a gracious winner as it is a gracious loser.  Early this morning after being declared the winner, Donald Trump delivered a speech with a welcoming tone.  It should be the hope of all Americans that Trump rises to the level of the presidency and does solve many of the problems he promised to solve while campaigning.

This morning, Hillary Clinton delivered her concession speech.  Missing was the contentious attitude that was so prominent during the campaign.  Clinton said that she will offer to work with Trump for the good of our country and that she hopes to inspire people to never stop believing in what is important to them.

Whoever won this election would be the one who could usher in a new effort to unite America.  The burden to unite our country now lies in the hands of Donald Trump, but it is also the responsibility of the Clinton supporters to have an open mind to the new president.

We face a challenge and we will ultimately decide how we respond to the challenge.  If Trump succeeds as a president – then America should succeed, but with partisan politics in play, it’s realistic to question whether everyone will hope for a successful Trump administration.

I have to believe that this country is better than the viciousness of the campaign and that this is another major crossroads in the history of our nation.  Americans voted for change and some change is coming, but expectations that there will be sudden change will probably be met with disappointment.  If you don’t expect too much you may not be letdown.

Trump supporters and Clinton supporters both share the responsibility to work together as Americans even when there is disagreement.

We have been looking for a sign that change was needed.  Maybe the outcome of this election is that sign.  

Photo via USA Today
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