Don’t Blame the Dog
While celebrities and the media focus on Trump’s depravity (and his tweets), the root of America’s problem is being overlooked.
By Liam Chan Hodges, Franklin and Marshall College
To those who have the power to be heard,
While accepting the Cecil B. DeMille Award at the 2017 Golden Globes, Meryl Streep took the opportunity to criticize President Trump.
Her speech was just one among dozens of other condemnatory statements given by celebrities in the past few months, all of which have denounced President Trump and criticized the culture of bigotry and intolerance that he has promoted. While watching Streep’s speech and reflecting on the words of other famous individuals who have spoken out against America’s newest Commander in Chief, two things sprang to mind. Namely, dogs and dog shit.
Have you ever noticed how people react to stepping in dog shit? Well if you haven’t, I’ll give you a quick synopsis. It’s generally with utter disgust.
However, what you also may have noticed is that those same people who hate shit, feel quite differently about dogs. People love dogs, the exact same dogs who drop logs all over their lovely yards. And yet, people continue to adore these furry, poop-pumping machines, or at the very least, choose to tolerate them, completely ignoring the obvious fact that these are the creatures from which foul excrement excretes.
Why in the world am I talking about dogs and dog shit you may ask? Well, because it’s a metaphor, my friends. It’s one of them damned metaphors.
You see, here on the American green, there is a bit of a messy situation going on. Some way, somehow, after an incredibly excruciating and utterly astounding election cycle, the American people are left with a steaming pile of shit on the nation’s front lawn.
And, unfortunately, this isn’t just any old piece of shit. This thing is a true behemoth. One that may even go down as America’s turd-of-the-century, depending on how history unfolds. Not only is this bad boy big, he’s a real stinker too. In fact, he’s so foul and vile that he offends nearly everything he comes in contact with. Even the neighbors are worried, as they peer out from behind curtains and peek over fences, wondering what in god’s name led to America’s newest lawn ornament, and secretly hoping that the stench doesn’t reach their own backyards.
By now, I’m sure you’ve figured out that the precious piece of poo that I am referring to is none other than America’s newest pride and joy, our very own president, Donald J. Trump.
Although I have enjoyed referring to the President of the United States as a feces sample of the canine variety, to simply compare him to poop, while fun and quite justified, is neither constructive nor the goal of this metaphor. Instead, what I wish to illustrate is the way in which the vast majority of those who have the ability to be heard choose to comment on the nastiness of the shit, yet fail, time and time again, to mention the mangy mutt that birthed it.
The phenomenon that is President Trump was not born from thin air. He did not simply appear at the country’s helm on his own volition. He is both a symptom and a consequence of a floundering political system. A system whose people have all but lost faith in their representatives. A system whose two leading parties selected a pair of the most unpopular presidential candidates in American history. A system that is in dire need of immediate change, yet, as Trump continues to enact more and more radical policy here, receives less and less attention.
I believe that if Trump’s first term continues along its current trajectory, the events which led up to his election will fade from people’s memory, replaced instead by his controversial actions as America’s 45th president.
Nothing has made this quite as apparent as the way celebrities have continually spoken out against him. The majority of influential anti-Trump individuals have chosen to stick to a straightforward route of attacking only the president and his policies. Very few have dared to criticize both parties, their own representatives or American political culture as a whole, for the part that these pieces played in Trump’s rise to power.
While I will be the first to tell you that Trump’s actions since taking office have been ignorant, inhumane, unconstitutional and, quite frankly, un-American, I also consider it short-sighted to believe that getting rid of Trump will solve America’s political crisis. President Trump is merely a symptom of a much larger disease, so I implore all those with a voice to remind each other and the public that President Trump is the consequence of a governmental system in need of repair.
I ask that those with influence to not simply flock around the dog shit on America’s yard and repeat again and again how awful it smells, how gross it looks and how atrocious it is. Yes, the shit is gross, and yes, more than anything, America needs to pooper-scoop and double-bag that motherfucker, but I also think that to do so without first potty-training the dirty dog that did the deed will result in simply replacing our current pile of shit for another (hopefully) less-offensive one down the road.
As an American citizen, I do not want dog shit on my front yard, not now and not ever. The American people must replace President Trump with a legitimate candidate who is the product of an in-touch political system. A system in which American leaders and elected representatives are trusted by their constituents, and a candidate with the debased morals and un-American convictions of our current president cannot again gain a foothold.
So, if you have a voice, let it be heard, but do not speak out against Trump alone. It is the fault of everyone in politics, both Republican and Democrat, both an untrusting electorate and untrustworthy representatives, and this country’s political culture as a whole, that America is in today’s situation.
This nation’s people must not mistake a grievous symptom for the disease itself. Trump must go, but at the same time, American politics must change, so I implore you to condemn the mangy mutt that is America’s current political state, for this nation’s people cannot sit idly by as this creature is continually allowed to pass its excrement on the country’s front lawn.
A Concerned Citizen