Saturday, October 8, 2016

A Choice, Not an Echo

Politics should be the most illustrious example of the art of compromise.  In fact, the establishment of our system of government arose out of one proposed in 1787.  I can accept that I will not agree with every policy position of any candidate for office.  For, as Mr. Churchill noted, if two people agree on everything, one of them is unnecessary. 

I am at a loss to explain how a major party nominated Donald Trump to be their candidate for President.  While the Republicans of my youth completed their abandonment of me when Ronaldus Maximus gave that infamous speech in Neshoba County, Mississippi (Google that location and the source of its notoriety), they have mostly nominated men of competence.  

Instead, this time they have chosen a man who, in the words of National Review columnist David Brooks, is running for President with less preparation than you or I would undertake to buy a sofa.  He has no interest in policy, people or our government.  Yet, that’s not his most fatal flaw.

We all know a Donald Trump, hopefully, only one.  We first met him early in middle school.  You remember; the rich kid who was the class bully during our most awkward years.  We tittered nervously when he made fun of the nerdy kids or he popped the bra strap of the first girl to wear one.  We may have even stood by when he directed his cruel vitriol against one of our friends.  We tolerated any behavior, so long as he did not come after us, since our self-esteem was already shaky.  We longed to be one of those who followed him, sharing in the glory that he projected upon himself.  He never admitted fault; if he flunked a test, it was because the teacher didn’t like him.  If he wasn’t the star of the game, the coach or referee was unfair. I even have his picture:

Remember Biff?  I’ll bet the first time you saw Back to the Future, you identified someone in your past who was just like him.  I’ll also bet you experienced a sensation of schadenfreude when, at the end of that first film, he had become an obsequious toady to Mr. McFly.  Sic semper bullies.

Now, it’s been revealed that Biff Trump has said something especially heinous about women.  I must confess my surprise, not at the news, but that people find this so incredulous.  His statement is consistent with what he has said since he announced his candidacy.  You know the litany of his verbose transgressions, everything from calling Mexicans rapists to fat-shaming women, all the while denying he said this or that, despite ample proof to the contrary.  Failing that, he blamed his inadequacies on a malfunctioning microphone, a rigged system or his crooked adversaries.  And, I’ve only referenced but two of the hundreds of insults and inappropriate bilious comments that have spewed from his over-inflated potty mouth over the past year.

Even more astonishing is the number of supporters who are only now running for cover.  I’m talking about the leaders of the Grand Old Party in Congress, various governors, even his own running mate, who act shocked that he has said such a thing.  Of course, his lapdog, Sean Hannity, remains firmly in his pocket, although I have not seen anything from the other toadies.  You know, the Biff chorus brings to mind another crew:
Well, so-called Republican leaders, you have abased yourselves for far too long at the altar of Biff.  You made him, now stick with him.  It’s a little late for you to profess surprise that this tax-cheating, narcissistic, misogynistic, bigoted bully is anything but what he has so often purported to be over the past 18 months.  He has been this his entire life, for all to see.  For all of them that have pretended he’s not all that bad, I can only hope that you go down in flames with him next month.  You deserve nothing better.