Matthew Reddin

Donald Trump: Thank You for Everything

The genius of Donald Trump is something to celebrate. In a solitary week, he’s unified a disparate nation and shot ancient literature back into prominence. Beat that, Obama.

 

You have to hand it to #45, he’s certainly brought a great number of people together. Take a look at how he has united the Left to come together to protest en masse against his presidency. They finally have themselves their own Tea Party movement—except the signs are all grammatically correct and they’re protesting racism, xenophobia, misogyny, and abuse of human rights as opposed to the apparent insanity that was affordable healthcare laws (poor people getting coverage equates to dictatorship, apparently).

The Democrats have been cleft in two because Bernie Sanders and his friends were too radical for the centrist Hillary folks and they never found common ground … until now. Thanks to Trump. The man’s a uniter!

That Trump? Bless his cotton socks. He’s united millions of women to march in solidarity and knit adorable “pussy hats” to make a statement about the role of women in a “post-truth” world. I love defiant belligerence almost as much as I do arts ‘n’ crafts.

There’s every other non-hipster male who will unite with the vast, unkempt hipster brood to grow a beard. Not to be tragically hip, but to shield themselves against the effects of the now-inevitable nuclear winter.

Or there’s how Airbnb is now giving free accommodation to those directly affected by his Muslim ban.

Or how New York taxi drivers called a blanket ban on trips to JFK Airport—in response to which, Uber tried to fill the gap and charge ludicrous levies; people responding to this by deleting the app, what with it being a dick move and the Uber founder being a Trump supporter.

The circle of life.

Thanks to Trump, we now have all had to—at one point or another—explain to someone we’re either related to, know, or work with, exactly what a “golden shower” is and that conversation is the kind of soul crusher that only the folks bonded by shared trauma can truly appreciate.

#45’s series of ill-conceived, legally dubious, and not-fully-thought-through Executive Orders has given rise to a great number of people rediscovering exactly what “Orwellian” means and sent sales of 1984 skyrocketing. Getting more people to read is an excellent thing.

If only they’d known then what so many, frustratingly, knew … um … then.

We’re also learning how a bicameral legislature works and what it’s going to take to get the man impeached. It’s a long road to cover, but if #42 can get done for lying about getting some clandestine … ahem, “trouser-friendly kisses,” well … weirder things have happened. This year. Shit, this week. This morning!

The great joy that has come from this fledgling administration is seeing, among all the racism, hate, division, post-truth and alternative facts, there has been genuine, inspiring political activism, completely without parallel since the Vietnam war.

There’s the fact that so many are now getting a painful understanding of history; electing a ludicrously unqualified reality TV star to the highest office in the land seemed to be the symptom of a nation robbed of (at least) intellectual curiosity and (at worst) any real sense of the past. It’s like they had a time machine and still didn’t use it to stop Hitler. Now they’re getting an understanding of the genuine parallels between banning Muslims from a small, truncated list of Muslim nations (the ones where Trump has no business interests) and how the U.S. stopped asylum-seeking European Jews from doing the same in the late ’30s. You know, the ones who got sent back from whence they came … and went on to die at Auschwitz. Those ones.

It’s ironic that the U.S. (a nation which for the longest time, if cultural output is any guide, seemed to have no real sense of irony) is now finding out the hard way exactly what irony is. After all, consider that the campaign which defeated the more qualified candidate with less votes, based on the fact that she had a private email server, is now an administration staffed by people with (you guessed it) private email servers and a Commander in Chief who Tweets his never-ending litany of thought nuggets from an unsecured Android handset. If Alanis Morissette were alive today, her head would be spinning.

The great joy that has come from this fledgling administration is seeing sights like those reported, in real time, by the media at large (well … except Fox News; one might presume they reported that flags were colorful and that ice cream was still tasty). Take for example that the Arab Spring has found its way to the major population centers of the U.S.; their own people’s uprising may take place—and in a seasonally appropriate time, to boot; and, on a more pleasing note, among all the racism, hate, division, post-truth, and alternative facts (another word-boner from Kellyanne Conway), there has been genuine, inspiring political activism, completely without parallel since the Vietnam war.

And also, Trump got Meryl Streep’s goat and she called him out on it whilst receiving the Cecil B. DeMille Award this month! Now, he countered her “attack” by saying that she’s “overrated.” This led people to print out her list of awards and nominations throughout her career and it takes up to 19 pages to complete. Meryl Streep is awesome and more people know the full extent of this now. Thanks, Don!

So, Hail Trump. Hail that poorly dressed, bafflingly coiffured, insanely bronzed, inarticulate, cognitive dissonance-deficient, fascist demagogue! Mad props for galvanizing the Left so swiftly. Kudos for waking people up. Thanks for the opportunity to reach out to our Muslim friends, neighbors, and colleagues when ordinarily I would not have done so, what with my contempt for people in general. People? The worst.

And bless you to your core, Donny J, for inspiring such gold on the Internet. The memes. The signs. The genius. It’s as inspiring as it is hilarious.

#ThanksTrump

 

 

Matthew Reddin

Matt Reddin has been writing nonsense about film, TV, books, music, and live theatre for a touch over 20 years. He’s gone from the halcyon days of street press in Perth, to regional dailies, national magazines, and major metropolitan newspapers. Now, in between bouts of sporadically yelling at clouds, he vents his creative spleen at www.lessercolumn.com.au

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