I have been pondering Donald Trump’s candidacy ever since the nation realized last fall that he wasn’t going away. I have mainly considered it with increasing disgust, I must admit, but I’ve also tried to give him the benefit of the doubt, as I often do. Like most young adults who have grown up in the age of reality television, I know him best for sitting behind a large oak table in a Trump Tower boardroom saying “You’re fired!” to a disappointed candidate. The Apprentice has always been entertaining, always provided its tidbits of business and professional wisdom. From the show and piecing together stories of events long before my time, I always saw Trump as a successful businessman with the stereotypical oversize ego and penchant for beautiful women. Then came June 2015.
I honestly didn’t think the country would take his candidacy too seriously, assumed the “entertainment factor” would wear off so we could focus on the “real issues,” but time has told a drastically different story. It appears that our real issues, the ones we desperately like to assume are over whenever a big “First” happens, are biting and looming. The fear, racism, bigotry, sexism, and violence that has run rampant through Trump’s rallies runs freely through America every single day. And as countless writers and experts draw the historical similarities in Trump’s campaign it becomes frighteningly more apparent that he could be the Republican nominee. So what does that say about our nation? About its people? What American “greatness” do the masses really want to return to? Why isn’t anyone really saying anything to stop him? What made Trump (apart from his bigotry, narcissism, and Lord knows what else) this way? What happened to the businessman everyone looked up to on television? What could happen if he does become president and still has no answers or plan of action?
This following spoken word piece is my attempt to explore those questions. I hope it makes you think about the events in our country, I hope it encourages discussion. Art doesn’t necessarily need a disclaimer, but I’m going to make one anyway: this poem does not attack anyone, and it does not make generalizations about any one group of people. Instead it intends to draw historical and cultural references and defend those who are being attacked in Trump’s candidacy. I will post the poem in text within the next week as it’s difficult to catch some of the references by way of audio. Please share with everyone you can. I pray God continues to grant all of us mercy, and show grace to this country that I deeply love.
Listen at this link or the player below