Watching the Republican convention was like watching magic. With brushes full of illusion, speaker after speaker tried to paint black as white and blue as red.

Charlie Kirk declares Trump is “the bodyguard of Western Civilization” and “guardian of America.” This is an attempt to deny that increasing racial tensions and growing violence on our streets are a direct result of this president’s racist tweets and off-the-cuff remarks, and of his penchant for sending squads of border enforcers and ICE troops into troubled cities to further fan the flames.

These strong-arm tactics are billed as a remedy for the “weakness” of Democratic leaders, who prefer negotiation and focus on mutual interests to resolve tensions. In other words, the “weak” leaders prefer Western democracy’s focus on bringing people together to find common ground.

Trump “unleashed the economic might of this nation like no other president,” claims another speaker, a repeated theme glossing over economic reality. Fact: The long rise in both stock and job markets started under the Obama administration, which pulled us out of the 2008 collapse presided over by another Republican, George W. Bush. (PBS: 6.91 million jobs were created under Obama; 5.85 million under Trump during his first two years.)

Right now, however, the party’s over. More people are out of work in our country than at any time since the Great Depression. That’s because despite all our resources, we still have no national policy to get the pandemic under control, and no one leading us in this fight.

President Trump doesn’t want to (or can’t) deal with the virus. Yet I just heard Republican speakers say that he “has improved health” and “lifts you up to live your American dream.” Really?

Are we going to fall for this razzle-dazzle?

JANE MENEGHINI

150 Rivermead Road

Peterborough