To all those disenfranchised trumplings/domestic terrorists — some dressed as runners-up in what looked to me like a Village People masquerade contest — who attached their Confederate flags and odious 2020 Trump banners to that massive interstate clown car train wreck at our Capitol on Wednesday, I am so glad to hear your empathetic führer “loves you” and “feels your pain.”
I feel your pain, too.
Now, Faux Viking Man and your merry mob rule crew, it’s time to take off your berserker horns, climb into your big boy jammies and walk out your collective pain. Then, in time, you too can legitimately vote the bum out of office, which — if you were paying any attention back in November — is exactly what the rest of us legally did. It’s called participatory democracy, Bubba, and — though painful at times for some — this participatory democracy of ours clobbers us all in the end.
Who among us, Republican or Democrat, hasn’t at times felt the pain of majority rule? Or, as the case may be, an insufferable oligarchy ineptly posing as majority rule. Because — and let’s be honest with ourselves now —who among us hasn’t suffered from the cumulative effects of Post Trumpatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) over these last four years?
So now, let’s all be good American neighbors and citizens again. Which means I will remove my old 1968 Pat Paulsen for President poster from my window if you, good neighbor, agree to remove your retro 2020 Trump election banner from your flagpole.
So, good neighbor, please take down your banner, in the name of everyone’s pain.
Since Jefferson first penned the words “created equal,” we have struggled with the concept of equality — racial, social, economic and constitutional equality — in this country. It seems to me even in the best of times our country takes only incremental steps down that long and difficult path. And, sometimes, that aspiring road toward human equality feels more like the road not taken. This week, thanks to Donald Trump, America took two giant goose steps down that road rarely taken — but in the wrong direction, as we’ve come to expect. We all saw it on CNN and MSNBC and Fox.
This time, had Trump’s delusional posturing not been so consequential, he would remain as usual an object of national scorn and ridicule — a gross caricature of some self-absorbed 18th century monarch, a Mel Brooks parody of Louis XVI, perhaps. “I love my people. Pull!”
Instead of human catapults, this week we saw peaceful protesters in Lafayette Park and national police using helicopters, tear gas and rubber bullets — plus Trump’s own bizarre threat of “ominous weapons” and “vicious dogs” — put a disgraceful end to that peaceful (and constitutionally protected) demonstration. Oh my, oh my, oh my, what transgressions did these demonstrators commit to bring such royal wrath down upon their heads? Lest we forget, those folks were protesting yet another police murder of an unarmed black man. They were protesting the institutional racism we have long ignored in this country. They were protesting the racial, social and economic inequalities that tear this country apart.
Frankly, who blames them? And, frankly, what a missed opportunity, a Churchill moment, to take an incremental step down that long and difficult path toward national unity.
Yet — as any deposed monarch will tell you — when the opposition grows exponentially, the king soon runs out of royal hounds.
It’s hard for anyone to have empathy for a man who has no empathy for anyone except himself. A man who castigates journalists who ask legitimate “nasty” questions and are “unappreciative” of the fine work he does. A man who brags about his COVID-19 press conference ratings and what a truly “great” and “amazing” and “fantastic” and “tremendous” and “incredible” job he is doing even though he inherited a thankless job from a previous “failed” and “broken” administration. Really, Donald?
About the only thing this self-aggrandizing perfect storm of a president hasn’t taken credit for is the new COVID-19 emergency face mask made from day-old pancakes and his own “incredible” lack of ownership to this crisis.
What a perfect time to self-quarantine from Donald Trump and stream old movies instead. Last night in the name of social distancing that is what I did. I couldn’t help compare General Turgidson’s argument for preemptive nuclear strike “ten to twenty million dead, depending on the breaks” to Trump’s “if we could hold that down to 100,000 and 200,000, we altogether have done a very good job.”
Just so we’re on the same Trump/Turgidson tag team page here — we are talking body counts. Scarier yet, Trump’s new statistical revelation may prove — like his earlier packed churches all over our country by Easter hallucinations — aspirational at best.
Given the Grand Equivocator’s pathological allergies to truth, no one really knows what he’ll say next. I, for one, know not what future pearls of sophist wisdom might spew from the cleaved lips of our new General Turgidson. I do suspect those words will prove more unnerving than all the chilly stuff found in "Dr. Strangelove." That’s because, unlike "Dr. Strangelove," Donald Trump isn’t fiction.