Ichabod's Kin
A place for politics, pop culture, and social issues

WE DODGED A BULLET

          As history warns, democracy’s most lethal challenges come from within, not without. Donald Trump, until his ego thrust him into politics, presented himself to the world as a much different man: aggressive, yes, but charming and not a tad affably soft-spoken. Then he morphed into a monster: loud, insolent and name-calling–shedding hosts of public friends on whom, as well as countless others, he declared all-out war.

          That should have been an unmistakable clue, a warning that a mad dog was about the premises, and to extend a friendly hand was only to have it bitten. But Donald is at last a promoter, not a warrior, beneficiary of multiple deferments from manly conflict; laughably Gen. Bone-spurs at best, warring via courts and the intimidation of expensive lawsuits that sane people deem frivolous and unworthy–all learned at the feet of the disreputable Roy Cohn, lawyer to the equally disreputable Joe McCarthy of senatorial infamy whose creation of the so-called Red Scare hurt more innocent Americans than it thwarted the bugbear of domestic communism.

          Mankind is a herd animal, yes, but as Freud added, correctly– “with a leader”–and Donald is just that; it’s a cult and he’s the cult leader. When people believe any and everything from the mouth of one person, drink the tea and give the cup to their children, they’re in a cult. In its most basic expression: when two people think exactly alike, one of them isn’t thinking. I too assumed that Trump’s early threat that he could commit murder on Fifth Avenue in the Big Apple and get away with it, was mere hyperbole, public theater, but no longer: were that to occur, who could now doubt that his minions would say, Well, better that than the prospect of Joe Biden and his “socialism.”?

Many of Donald’s followers, like him, are a people of grievance; for years a people scorned, or so they felt. Their social cohort was not the one seen on TV or at iconic public celebrations—which is why they stuck with their evangelists despite the latter’s hypocrisy. But that has changed: their Awards shows and celebrity levels are good as any, and were merely undercover prior to that—researchers long knew that Country singers were far out-selling the Sinatra/Como/Williams etc. crowd. But all the public got to see in entertainment mags were the Rat Pack and their ilk.

So why should the aggrieved care? Actually they don’t. It’s a culture war more than anything. The Civil War was urban industrial North against an agrarian South, and the elephant of slavery inflamed the difference. Today it’s still two different kinds of people, staring across an unbridgeable divide, and race is still in the mix. Strange it is, however, that a rich blowhard northerner should be the modern standard bearer of the Red State crowd.

Some liberal moralists deem that they can woo Trumpkins with love, whatever that means: by being neutral, or pretending to be; not ruffling feathers; being good listeners. Lotsa luck. This too is a war, less with weapons than with words and influences. M.L. King, Jr. said he loved his enemies but didn’t flatter himself that it was the solvent of racial evil; only laws with teeth in them were the best means of legislating morality.

The real liberal fear is that Don will keep the GOP in a stranglehold and run again in 2024. File that under #AintGonnaHappen: Loss of power is a game-changer. When Truman fired Gen. MacArthur, amid an angry chorus of militarists Doug roared back to the U.S. to run against Harry and take his job. But without his eagle-crested hat, aviator glasses and corncob pipe, he was just a balding old man in a gray suit who settled for delivering a long, slow swan-song. Donald will be met by a score of other egotistical wannabes hoping to be president four years from now.

We’ve dodged a bullet. Trump is fired and all who come in second in the presidential sweepstakes are otherwise known as: Losers.

One Response to “WE DODGED A BULLET”

  1. Good column. Haven’t seen anything from you in awhile. Please use my gmail address and not this one.

    Sent from my iPad

    >


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