No Trump Change
Polls continue to find Trump leading the race for the Republican nomination, despite his truculent, bigoted policies.
By Ty Joplin, Haverford College
Every day we wake up with the looming specter of a Trump presidency.
Many of us, in the beginning, disregarded this possibility completely. Trump is a clown, and clowns get cut down after their antics are put on full-display on the national stage. How could a clown get nominated, let alone elected by a respectable, mainstream party? But now, as we find ourselves in the beginning of the homestretch to the Republican nomination, the prospect of a Trump in 2016 is rapidly becoming a reality—one so unspeakably wrapped in horror that we can only repress it or continue to deny its possibility.
As Trump, who looks more tanned potato than man, continues to dominate, denying his rise to the throne will become more of a desperate disavowal of how perverse our political system has become. Many pundits assumed this cycle would look a lot like the last: a 16-ring carnival that entertains the national public with the crazies before settling on the only real option the whole time.
But there wasn’t exactly that singular, sensible figure: people assumed it to either be Walker, Rubio, or Bush. But now Walker’s out, Rubio has barely just begun breaking into the double digits in the polling, and Bush looks like a turtle passively drowning in a pond nobody ever goes to.
All the while, Trump, by almost every poll released since mid-July, has led by massive margins.
And the Republicans are running out of time to prove themselves worthy contenders with Iowa just two months away. Yet even still, with this daunting and urgent crisis soon-approaching, many lovers of sensibility claim Trump will fade away or self-destruct. By now, we know this to be simply naïve. They thought that when Trump called Mexicans rapists, or when he called McCain, who was a POW in Vietnam, a coward, or when he called Rosie O’donnell a pig, or when he impersonated a mentally handicapped individual during a rally, then surely he had finally done himself in and now we can begin to think of the real candidates. But where are they?
Trump has now moved on and begun to call for massive and indiscriminate airstrikes in the Middle East, and is genuinely telling us that he wants all Muslims to register into a security database just in case any of them want to blow up anything.
If asked, he would probably begin decrying our continual reliance on boring protocols we call “laws” that get us into trouble or weak, low-energy tactics that don’t strike enough fear in the hearts of other countries’ leaders.
If you described Kim Jong Un without tying him to North Korea, I’m more than confident that Trump would want to shake this strong leader’s hand and team up with another man who just wants to take the bull by the horns.
Those Trump Deniers are also forgetting the source of Trump’s power: an American public that is sick and tired of the DC’s convoluted and dishonest talk, broken cronyism, and dysfunctional incestuous nature. People are latching onto Trump and not letting go.
His poll numbers may be unshakable because he has captured a solid chunk of the Republican Party and Independents who actually have decided they want him as their president. And these people would rather move to Canada than give up their Trump dystopian fantasy than go to the voting machine for a Rubio or a Bush—the same types they wanted Trump to run out of power in the first place.
The possibility of a Trump presidency may shock many voters into ensuring a sensible candidate like Hillary Clinton take the White House, but what if Trump can mobilize more than Hillary? A little over half the country votes, leaving an untold millions of disaffected citizens who may resonate so strongly with Trump’s Anti-politics that they register en masse to see the radical change in the system they’ve been quietly hoping for.
And then that would be it. No legal procedure can remove a tyrannical incumbent—he would be President until he went off and tried to blow up France without Congressional approval. This is a real possibility—one that must be faced sooner or later.
How can anybody reasonably hold on to the prediction that Trump will inevitably fall? He’s inverted the logic of primaries, broken all the rules and only come out stronger as a result. He shows absolutely no interest in doing anything but smearing his peers and telling the American people they would be better off if they just gave him a blank check to run this country. I’m not even sure Trump has heard of the Constitution.
Maybe—just maybe, sense will win out and Trump won’t be elected after all. Maybe he’ll peter out after lackluster results in the primaries. Pundits and everyday citizens alike will certainly breathe a collective sigh of relief, recognizing that this great country was about to be brought to its knees by a loud-talking New York strongman. And we’ll attribute this victory to some inevitability in the political system to weed out the truly crazy: but we’d probably be mistaken.
Rather than some work of fate, Trump’s fall may actually be because of a miraculous breakdown in the system. Our politics have become increasingly violent, vitriolic, victim-blaming, militaristic, and apocalyptical—everything is a war or a crisis, and it was only a matter of time before a hawkish dictator took the helm, perfectly amalgamating all our fears and war cries and anger at DC politics and promising, without any of fluff, pandering, or “politician talk,” utter domination upon the world and open season to anyone who wants to stand in his way.
We are without a doubt facing a mirror, and Trump is forcing us to look at our dark side as a country. In this way, he is oddly more representative of the American people than your standard, run-of-the-mill pragmatists like Hillary Clinton or Jeb Bush.
And if Trump doesn’t win this cycle, we may rest easy for a while; but if we continue along the path we’re currently marching down, we may encounter an even more terrifying bigot who desperately wants access to our enormous nuclear stockpile come 2020. I pray to any god listening that the sheer spectacle of Trump’s rise is a wakeup call to all who just want a straight-talking President, regardless of their moral character or tyrannical ambitions.
In the coming days, it will be much harder to avoid sweating ourselves into a fever. And even then, I suspect most will repress this awful wild man’s power until the bitter end comes and they are swept away by the race riots.