Submitted by William Elder.
Not before, not when— unfortunately— but after you have bitten into a rotten apple do you realize that you have gone so wrong. Too late to avoid it and the rotten consequences of your mistake. But fortunately not too late to spit, with consequences only to your pride and embarrassment. Thank goodness you don’t have to swallow and endure worse consequences.
Spit time has come with Donald Trump. The man was a rotten apple from the beginning. Too few in the Electoral College recognized it; the popular electorate knew— nearly five million of us. First time I saw his hustle, first time he opened his mouth, I knew. My mother taught me about phonies like him— without honor, integrity, even due regard for respect extended, courtesy shown, even simple truth recognized for what it is. I recognized him immediately and voted accordingly. But he won— no matter how now.
Now he has lost, to all but those who cling in admiration to his character flaws or their own delusions. Time enough to examine what we have, in disgust, now spat out.
Like all of us, Donald Trump, the ex-President, was the product of his up-bringing. By all accounts this was a man disliked and bullied by his own family. This neglect hurt him deeply, shaped his attitude towards all those around him. Call it disinterest, dislike, even hatred of his fellow human beings, and a clinging love of himself, his opinions of himself. Sociopathy the mental-health professionals call it. Trump remains a sociopath to this day. Listen to it in his vicious, hurtful words, hear it in his tone when he speaks about self-perceived enemies all around him, watch it in his strutting arrogance, see it in his indifference to any and all needs but his own, always overblown, invoking pity, always self-focused, embracing bathos. Usual lies. His own regard for himself is always central to Donald Trump. That, and money. Merely look and listen, and judge. First him, then yourself.
So what? He’s spat.
Ask yourself what nourishment the country might have been taking in while we were taking four years to throw up. Health care. Effective government response to a range of problems, not least of which was a pandemic that has killed— continues to kill— one out of every 1,000 Americans, at the rate of one Pearl Harbor per day! How stronger could the Body Politic have become if the outgoing administration would have used its vast power to strengthen our common institutions, create fairness, reform our 18th Century social practices, bring our divided populations into harmony rather than create political advantage out of political, religious, racial, economic, and social divisions? Trump leaves a vast vacuum in the nation that only echoes the hollowness within himself— his vision of himself, his fellow man, his care for his country and its people. God save us all caught in his destructive wake. May it at least wash away mention of his sullied name again.
The views expressed in this article are the writer’s own.