And yet, alongside being shocked and sickened by his words and actions (both before and since the election) I remain almost mesmerised by his weird behaviour. I am heartily turned off by - and fed up with - his childish rants, where he uses phrases such as,
‘….bad people with bad intentions…’ (about travellers from countries HE has selected to be on his banned list)
‘…they don't appreciate how "kind" President Obama was to them. Not me!’
‘…We must keep "evil" out of our country!’
‘…Bad people are very happy!’ and ‘…People pouring in. Bad!’
(About Australia’s refugee arrangement), ‘…I will study this dumb deal!’
And his reference to Judge James Robart, a (highly regarded Republican appointee), as a
‘so-called judge’. What an appalling insult!
And all this on TWITTER, for Heaven’s sake! TWITTER !
But, as much as I try to ignore media reports on Trump, I am still drawn to reading more and more. It’s like reading a fascinating, yet grim, novel. I have found myself trawling through opinion pieces in the New York Times and the Washington Post, as well as other US and world wide publications – and here I am, in Australia.
I resolve to stop reading abut the orange man, yet continue to do so. I have developed some sort of compulsion to follow his pronouncements and people’s reactions to him.
I watch television news reports with my mouth agape.
As I try in vain to curb my viewing of media coverage of this awful man, I start to harbour a sense of guilt about why I should ignore the dreadful truth of it.
I am watching this ‘performance’ in mild horror while not being able to do anything.
And here I have to offer (the obvious) Burke’s famous ‘Triumph of Evil’ quote,
“All that is needed for the forces of evil to succeed is for enough good men to remain silent.”
And also William Wilberforce, who said,
“You may choose to look the other way but you can never say again that you did not know.”
So, as I ‘remain silent’ and desperately want to ‘look the other way’ I feel that I should be doing something. But what?
What can I do?
I hesitate bringing up the subject of Trump when talking to friends or relatives as, once the ridicule has subsided, it becomes too heavy and depressing.
I have downloaded the knitting pattern for the ‘ Pussy hat’ but as I live in the sub-tropics there is little chance for me to wear a bright pink woollen hat out in public to show my solidarity with the protesting populace.
What more can I do?
His lies worry me. He denies facts (‘fake news’) and substitutes ‘alternative facts’ and his followers believe every word he says.
There’s a saying somewhere from someone I can’t remember, that goes: ‘A lie that can be passed off as truth becomes truth.’
That’s a worry!
This week, in The Guardian, Nick Cohen wrote:
‘Compulsive liars shouldn’t frighten you. They can harm no one, if no one listens to them. Compulsive believers, on the other hand: they should terrify you.’ (My emphasis)
As much as I did not agree with everything in Cohen’s opinion piece, I think he is right about this.
But, as for now, I will have another attempt at putting my head in the sand as I try to ignore the scary Trump ‘thing’.
Apart from anything, it’s taking up too much of my time when I could be doing something pleasant.