During the first episode of Hulu’s series “A Handmaid’s Tale”, which takes place in
the not-too-distant future, one of the characters explains to a group of women, whose sole
purpose is to breed the next generation, that what seems unusual to them now will become
the new normal. Such is the case with our government, our country, and certainly our
president. Political gaffs and inappropriate comments that in the past would seem scandalous
are now the new norm and a day without them almost feels empty.
It is kind of like living under the fly pattern for jets landing at the regional airport. At
first, one wants to move as that is no place to live. Eventually, when guests come over and
comment about the noise, the homeowner retorts that they don’t notice it anymore. We are
not at the not noticing stage yet with the Trump administration, but rather we are in the stage
that proceeds it. The outrageous statements and the taking the presidency where no man has
gone before is the new normal and unfortunately, there might be that tendency that shortly,
we won’t even hear it.
It is traumatic alone that this is the new norm. But what we cannot do is to allow it
to become unheard or as the homeowner would have it, so acceptable that it is not noticed.
We must remain vigilant to always hear things that should not be acceptable to us as a
country and not acceptable from our government or from our leader. Yet the problem arises,
how do we keep up with the daily scandal and how do we not forget the previous one
because a new, more outrageous one occurs?
In just one 10 day news cycle, we as a country were confronted with: The President
firing FBI Director James Comey; The justification for the firing was a memo written by the
second in command of the attorney general’s office, Rod Rosenstein; this of course was
followed up with President Trump himself saying that the reason why he fired Comey was
due to the Russia investigation; which was then followed up by us learning that he fired
James Comey and joked about it with the Russians in the Oval Office; which was added to
the fact that he told the Russians that Comey was a nut job; this of course was done during
the same meeting in which he gave away national secrets to the Russians; and then of course,
the President lamenting that everything going on with him is a witch hunt. Anyone of these
could carry the normal week news cycle in and of itself. Yet, before one is totally ferreted
out and analyzed as to the import on this country and on the presidency, another one quickly
follows on its heels, chasing the other from the national consciousness.
This normalcy is not normal. This is not the country that we have developed over
nearly 230 years. This is not how our country is supposed to work and we dare say, it is not
working. Although on a personal level we might be thrilled that some of the President’s
agenda seems to be stalled by his constant putting his foot in his mouth. Nevertheless, his
agenda should be stalled because it is the wrong agenda and by and large, it is anti-American
people. Rather, than the stalling occurring because of his incompetence, his bravado, his lack
of focus and his being consumed with himself.
It is really eye opening how much Donald Trump did not and does not understand how
Government works. This could really explain his mantra during the campaign “Drain the
Swamp”. Based upon his demanding of loyalty from FBI Director Comey to his requesting
of intelligence and security officials such as Admiral Rodgers to announce there was no
evidence of Trump/Russia collusion before the investigation was complete, shows he views
the presidency as a monarchy. He has no conception of checks and balances, nor does he
understand he is subservient to the people and the Constitution. He believes all are
subservient to him and he is the country.
His “Drain the Swamp” is akin to olden days “Off with Their Heads”. One cannot
trust someone who had allegiance to a predecessor. He never understood and still doesn’t
that our government is a continuum. Those that make the government work, whether elected
or hired, are constrained by laws and allegiance to the country. His draining the government
of these professionals has left a void in manpower and experience.
To Donald Trump, Washington was a swamp. Only by draining it and then restocking
it with his own brand of amphibians and reptiles could the swamp be cleansed. However,
what he views as a cleaning is simply replacing alligators with crocodiles, frogs with toads
and pythons with boa constrictors. But regardless that some of these new inhabitants do not
understand how this ecosystem works is of no matter. As long as their fidelty is to him, the
King, that is all that matters.
We do not pretend to be psychologists, although most Americans now have their own
psychological take on the current occupant of the Oval Office. However, for most presidents
a good day is one in which their name is not spoken of in the press and they are left to do
things behind the scenes, such as dealing with foreign leaders or talking to members of
Congress. A good day for most presidents occurs when a bill goes sailing through Congress
for them to just put their signature on. A good day for most presidents is one in which there
is a photo op where they can put on a smiling face, shake a hand and go back to business.
For this president, a day like that would be torture. Rumor has it that in the daily
briefings, the briefers insert the name Trump as often as possible, knowing that seeing the
name causes this president to wish to read further on. For this president, being the news of
the day, whether good or bad, seems to be the only thing that he cares about. There is a
saying that there is no such thing as good or bad press, just press. This man appears to live
and die by that adage.
When things have simmered down, there is that inappropriate tweet. He seems to
believe that the presidency is in fact, a reality t.v. show. Or maybe he thinks it’s like a soap
opera playing out daily. In either case, he believes success is determined by the ratings.
Therefore, the more people talking about Trump and the more people tuning in to see what
Trump has done, means that he must be successful as Trump is on everybody’s mind.
So even though we are not psychologists, it appears that his narcissistic, self-
destructive personality can only end in his impeachment. After all, think about the amount
of people that will be watching. After all, think about the headlines. After all, think about
Trump being on everybody’s lips, waiting for the next days episode. After all, even though
impeachment is not a badge of honor, Trump will be able to talk about how it was the hugest
impeachment ever, and more people watched this impeachment than Bill Clinton’s or even
the resignation of Richard Nixon.
Then, we can return to normalcy. Because, as we all know right now, Republican or
Democrat, liberal or conservative, independent or atheist, religious or whatnot, as long as this
man is president, this country will not have normalcy. And as long as this man is president,
we cannot allow what he does to be considered normal.