We can say that the unfathomable has happened.
America, a country that boasts of its sophistication, its superior civilized standards, its intellectual accomplishments and general civility in the political arena has seen the rise of a political commoner to the top of its ranks by the unleashing of unprecedented unintellectual savagery concomitant with an avaricious ingestion by a group of millions that claims selective sociopolitical chastisement.
That this historic seismic shift occurs on the back of the historic election of the country’s first black President for two consecutive terms cannot be overlooked because it is this occurrence that awakened the politics of anger and the demonizing of Presidents – maligning them by the color of their skin and assigning them religion by the sound of their names.
For all of its accomplishments and declared post – civil rights maturity, its recognition of its ‘land of immigrants’, there was an undercurrent in America, a growing sentiment of victimhood by millions who were being fed a robust diet of combustible commentary by Conservative Ultra-Right Wing Talk Radio/Television.
The rise of Barrack Obama was a foreshadowing of the loss of rights by those who were the true first class citizens of this nation that decries a class system in other countries and first class citizen rights . The situation had gotten critical enough to cast the aside the pretense of comfortable cohabitation. The political conversation had to be one framed with incendiary language, suggestive of plots and conspiracies to subvert the land, its laws and its founding fathers, appealing to the base reflexes, consuming , corralling thoughts for when this America, now weakened by a liberal President and porous borders would be in the hands of the descendants of the May Flower.
This was the atmosphere that bred a Trump; the frame of mind that entertained a Trump; millions of people, steered off course by intense anti-intellectualism; acutely vulnerable to the hostile takeover of normal politesse and political comity, that only he, Donald, could execute…mostly because it required the coarse, unctuous bawling and puerile gesticulations that he has perfected and largely because it requires a negligible volume of gray matter to deliver this package of politics to millions of Americans who have claimed civil assault because their President is a Muslim and the borders do not have an electrified fence.
But the rise of a Trump doesn’t just happen after a few rallies peppered with jibing and jawing.
Though there is still, largely, a sentiment of implausibility that this man of few social graces and even less political acumen can not only run for office but be one of two contenders for the job of leader, we cannot be dismissive of some of what may have driven millions to vote Trump – to validate one of the most uncivilized political campaigns in the country’s history.
The World Trade Center may have been replaced by an architectural wonder but it has not replaced the wondering at national readiness to prevent this level of carnage, going forward. And, we are quietly growing accustomed to the different color codes of terror alert; wearing our clogs to travel because we anticipate having to take our shoes off; tolerant of an FBI that has too much bureaucracy to decide whether a person is an imminent threat and seems to know this only after mass murder committed by that very person after years of surveillance; angry that so many who have received citizenship have become enemies within.
This is what forms the stanzas of the battle cry of a Trump; encourages the kind of bellicose repetition that creates mass appeal by parasitical politicians like him who happen upon demagoguery purely by accident and opportunity. Trump has mastered the technique of optimizing his statements by inserting watch words like Muslims and Mosques and immigration and surveillance and guns and women and ‘the blacks’ and ‘the gays’ and everything else that will endear him to those who are seeking a militaristic option to preserve their majority. Xenophobia has become his conduit to winning.
With statements purposed to be both ludicrous and scathing, this politician of happenstance, challenged by simple linear thinking, devoid of any sense of the mechanics of diplomacy and definitely unaware that beheading and burning at the stake are no longer the recourse of civilized nations, is now poised to win his party’s leadership and be a key contender for the leadership of America – a country that boasts of its human rights record, prides itself on its encompassing culture, its sophistication, its intellectual and diplomatic accomplishments and its negotiative skills, particularly in the domain of disarmament of weaponry.
He has gotten to the top by way of Trumpian proposals like religion tests to enter the country and English- only public spaces. Like a rabid animal, he has cornered his party in to supporting him by controlling and threatening to unleash the ignorance of millions who still see Americanism as a color coded experience. Political Action Committees that once saw him as buffoon with a big mouth and access to financial credit are now being forced to choose between ideological loyalty or national integrity.
For many, it’s inconceivable, even laughable that this author of books that read like a shyster’s manual on how to get the American tax payer to finance his way to becoming a billionaire, is up for the country’s top job, the world’s top job, with a resume that touts money and misogyny in comparable proportion.
But, in reality, Trump’s ascendancy to this improbable height confirms a few things. Race–baiting and religious bashing have a home in America. The susceptibility to mass suggestion, by a bellicose bawler is greater than what most would associate with a democracy. History has provided many examples of what happens when ethnic and religious demagogues ride in to office on the back of bigotry and fear mongering.
It also confirms that stupidity isn’t illegal and it actually adds a vital ingredient to the political process.
Not that, for one minute, do I think Trump will enter the oval office unless he bought a ticket (from an outlet) or was graced with an invitation by some event organizer.
But it is curious to note how the laughter at his candidacy comes across now; with less mirth, with slight trepidation, with wavering in the question as to whether he can really win this thing.
Trump has swallowed his party and millions of Americans by gorging on a diet of vaulting ambitions and a misplaced sense of nationhood, with a desert of ‘egging on’ by people corrupted of mind, bereft of truth and incapable of thinking beyond the reptilian level.
I am one who is predicting for Trump a case of acute political dyspepsia – indigestion associated with swallowing more politics than the stomach was constructed to ingest.
For all of his apparent victories and inroads in to new political territory, Trump’s overall shallowness condemns him to a distant second behind his opponent.