In response to your questions about the beliefs of Republicans and how to understand what’s happening in our country …
Firstly, I believe that most Republicans do believe in family values, morality, the rule of law and the Constitution. As far as "King Donald" [my sister’s term] goes, he's a loud mouth; insults people, and engages mouth before brain. I understand why many people, including many Republicans, don't like him. However, I do believe that he has done some pretty good things for the country in the area of lowering taxes, reducing unemployment, creating jobs, and fulfilling promises he made to the people who elected him. If he could only keep his mouth shut, I believe he might be viewed as a pretty good President.
I don't have any magic answers to help you understand what's happening to our country, but I'll give you my 2-cents worth. I believe technology has worsened human interactions. While we can get a text message to each other in seconds, it is far too easy to criticize someone, post that criticism and let the whole world see it before thinking of how the other person might receive our words.
When we all were growing up, the media presented news; now it seems we only have opinion channels and none of them broadcast anything that is close to balanced news. So we’re all influenced by these opinion channels who broadcast non-stop trash talk. I believe the giants of yesteryear's TV news would roll over in their graves to see and hear what is passing for news today.
Until Clinton, the news channels pretty much let the personal actions of the President
(Democrat or Republican) go unreported.
We never saw news clips of Kennedy shacking up with Marilyn Monroe. Also, Eisenhower and FDR have since been reported to having had affairs (not of State), but those also never made the news back then. Clinton's activities were pretty much the first Presidential personal activities that made the big news. Today, it seems anything and anyone is fair game if deemed “newsworthy” by one whose comments are protected by the 1st Amendment.
The nightly talk shows are also different than days of yore. None of the current ones even approach Johnny Carson's shows. While he wasn't perfect, Johnny tended to laugh with his guests, not at them. The vast majority of Hollywood is now anti-Trump; the media (except for FOX News) is all anti-Trump, so when all you hear is 24x7 how bad Trump is, it has to impact your opinion.
The only channels that I believe broadcast news are BBC and the Weather Channel. It's a sad state of affairs when the Weather Channel and a foreign news channel are the only TV shows than seem to broadcast US news, rather than opinions.
So, I think we’re all having our brains influenced by a number of TV talk show celebrities and a whole host of TV news anchors who are getting paid millions to spread their poison. I don't know how to stop this other than switch them off, which will reduce their revenue. Since I’ve stopped, or at least reduced, my listening to opinion channels, I feel a lot more positive. I'm also getting a lot more books read, but am getting tired of watching the weather news.