You Can't Trump This
He didn’t call me this time. No, this time it was a large envelope in my post office box. The return had Barney’s name and his New Jersey address.
Fingers tremble as the envelope reveals its contents, a huge picture of Donald Trump, a close up of his face so enlarged part of his coiffure is cropped at the top. That was the good part. The missing hair part.
It was I who placed the call. Barney was already laughing when he picked up the phone. “I knew that would wound your tiny, timid, liberal heart,” Barney jabbered. “Frame it, my friend, hang it on the wall, you’re looking at the next president of these United States.”
Listening to Barney, or Trump, is unnerving, kind of like running into a poor, homeless, deranged person on a big city street who gets in your face and starts raving about the end of the world.
“Barney, get serious,” I implored. “Look, the political arena is a very large circus with a main event flanked by freak shows. The star attractions, in this case the legitimate Republican candidates, attract the majority of the people. There will always be a fraction of the public who pay two bucks to see the guy with three ears, or, in this case, three sets of hair.”
“Whoa there, Blogger Butt!” he exploded. “May I remind you Donald Trump leads in all the national polls? So who’s the freak, Mr. Know it All?”
About every third year Barney makes a valid point which I tend to ignore by steering the conversation elsewhere.
“Let’s get real, Barney. Here is a guy who offends just about everybody, including Hispanics without whom a candidate can’t win the general election. He seems to acknowledge there is a God and probably would give God an interview if God would just contact his people. So the Christian vote is probably questionable.
“Veterans, evenly marginally patriotic Americans? They were out the door when Trump lashed out at John McCain for earning war hero status only because he was captured….”
“Wait a minute, wait a minute!” Barney screamed. “McCain was captured!”
“Well, yes, Barney, he was,” I explained, “but only after the Senator flew a half dozen dangerous, successful missions for which he was awarded the Bronze Star. This was a feat he could not have accomplished had he avoided Viet Nam with a medical deferment for bone spurs in his footsies like your man Donald.”
Barney was getting miffed, I could tell. “So you sit there with your two-bit column in your four-bit state, ranting on about stuff you don’t have a clue. Tell me this. You say Christians may not like Mr. Trump, veterans and patriotic people don’t like him. The majority of Hispanics don’t like him. That’s just a lot of people, so how come he is leading all the polls!”
As I was gathering thoughts for a response, Barney resumed his tirade. “I’ll tell you who likes Donald Trump! I like Donald Trump! And there are a lot of people out there just like me!”
I sat stunned. The silence became uncomfortable. “Are you still there?” he asked. “Did you hear what I said? There are a lot of people out there just like me!”
“I heard you, Barney,” I whispered. “It’s frightening.”
He hung up.