Poison for the sake of poison. Meanness for the sake of meanness.

That’s the saddest thing that’s happened to our politics. Too many politicians have decided, emulating Trump, that being as toxic and poisonous as possible is a better way to appeal to the base than it is to appeal to our better natures. No more “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself” or “ask not what your country can do for you.” Now, it’s about insulting people, dehumanizing anyone different or who disagrees, riling up hatred, stoking division, telling Big Lies that gullible, armed crowd uses as justification to commit violence and murder.

President Biden tries hard at positivity, at aspiration. “There’s nothing Americans can’t do when we do it together.” It’s a sign of how far we’ve fallen that his attempts seem so out of place. It doesn’t get nearly the coverage of “Crooked Hillary,” “Sleepy Joe,” “Liberals want to destroy the country and kill all of you,” or “Democrats are part of a baby-eating cabal of Satan worshippers.”