From the outset I confess I am among others who – although oft times more vocally than I – have generously acknowledged Donald J. Trump’s foray into politics. It usually goes something like this, “Well, you gotta give him credit!” When listening this morning to a FOX NEWS recording of Trump’s latest rally two things were patent: one, his rhetoric always entails a trashy-mouthed tale of discredit about somebody; and, two, he says nothing substantive – or if it seems that he does, it is usually false.
“Trumpery” first appeared in English in the mid-15th century with the meanings “deceit or fraud” (a sense that is now obsolete) and “worthless nonsense.” Less than 100 years later, it was being applied to material objects of little or no value.
I mention this not to prove I am a victim of my own complaint – that is, not to heartlessly ridicule poor Mr. Trump – but rather to highlight what is the only acceptable interpretation of this man’s divertissement. Personally I dislike his squash-court delivery but I accept this amounts to little more than a choice of music. Oh – and his total absence of grammar and syntax. That also upsets me. And his voice.
But considered independently from the office of the presidency, Trump’s sideshow is unquestionably as cultured as the Grand Ole Opry or any other similarly acknowledged spectacle.