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Downtown View: Donald O’Trump

It started when the nine-year-old in our family misheard Donald Trump’s name and called him, with disgust and outrage, Donald O’Trump. She hasn’t been the only one disgusted and outraged. Globe columnists, Times columnists, television commentators have been spewing disbelief, abhorrence, indignation and revulsion. They parse his “policies” as if they actually mean something.

At some point, I started laughing. These people are so steamed up. They’re taking Donald O’Trump seriously.

I’ve got news for them. He’s spoofing. He’s taking us for a ride. He’s making fun of the Republican candidates, mocking them. He’s exposing the hard-core Republican electorate for what it is. He’s trumped us, and he’s laughing all the way to the primary. Calling him O’Trump is my way of honoring the half-aware guise he has taken on.

His modus operandi, perhaps unconsciously, has been to take Republicans’ prejudices and perversions to the max. Consider immigration. A couple of years ago US Rep. Steve King, a Republican from Iowa, said, “For everyone who’s a valedictorian, there’s [sic] another 100 out there that weigh 130 pounds, and they’ve got calves the size of cantaloupes because they’re hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert.”

No one in O’Trump’s party called out King for that remark, and there was little comment from the Republican presidential candidates when Trump accused Mexican immigrants of being rapists and criminals. They finally pushed back only when Trump demeaned Sen. John McCain’s war record—a suspect reaction since some of those same people had no trouble demeaning John Kerry’s war record in 2004. Criticizing immigrants pushed up O’Trump’s poll numbers, and mocking McCain didn’t hurt him.

Women? There is another topic that could get Trump in trouble but hasn’t. He has taken the insulting attitudes toward women displayed by several of the candidates and simply exaggerated them. Some of the Republican presidential-hopefuls have fought vigorously to restrict contraception and abortion, apparently believing American women’s only task is reproduction, which they can’t manage without government interference. Trump’s put-down of Megyn Kelly is no different from the insulting attitudes toward women displayed by such women-demeaners as Rick Santorum and his fellow travelers.

I haven’t the imagination to come up with the future shenanigans O’Trump is capable of.

That’s because he doesn’t know himself. He’s having a good time. He loves getting people steamed up. I suspect several of the Republican presidential candidates didn’t give him enough respect in the past year or two, so his “candidacy” might have been sparked by a bit of revenge on his part.

Now however, it’s just fun. He has nothing to lose. He was bored with his life—he’s made plenty of money and his empire is led by others who are able, so he had little to do. He might not have expected to be so popular when he got into the race, but now he’s enjoying a little payback along with causing a jolt to the system.

He signed a pledge to support the Republican candidate. But can’t you just imagine some candidate annoying him enough to cause him to renege on that promise?

Does O’Trump really want to be president? Doubtful. It’s a serious job and hard. But being a candidate is not hard or serious—just look at the Republican presidential candidates, of which only two, maybe three, are actual grown-ups. O’Trump is taking a cue from them and ramping it up.

Some in my family say O’Trump is not smart or ironic enough to invent such a plan. My answer is that it doesn’t take much intelligence. It takes only a need for distraction and fun. His “campaign” is not carefully crafted, but for his purposes it doesn’t need to be.

I don’t know how long O’Trump will be entertained by his public venture. I don’t know how long enough of the public will support him. I don’t know what his exit strategy will be. But the long campaign was boring even for a political junkie like me. With O’Trump causing fury everywhere, I’m just going to enjoy the ride.

Downtown View is a column by newspaperwoman Karen Cord Taylor who founded The Beacon Hill Times in 1995 and served as its editor and publisher until late 2007. She also founded and served as editor and publisher of the Charlestown Patriot-Bridge and The Back Bay Sun weeklies. Karen now works from her home in downtown Boston and blogs at Please feel free to leave responses in the comments section below.

14 Replies to “Downtown View: Donald O’Trump

  1. He’s playing the game, and he’s loving it. however, won’t be a joke when he can’t answer more pointed questions at the next debate. Then we can sit back and laugh. He’ll fade soon after!

  2. Remember, no one thought Ronald Reagan, an actor, would become Governor of California, then President of the USA. The Donald could just surprise everyone, like Reagan did!

  3. Look at the positive……he is entertainment, for some! But soon the curtain will drop and a legit candidate will surface above and beyond what we’re exposed to with O’Trump. He’s just taking us for a ride. Knows he’ll never make it, and as Marjorie pointed out, where will he land during the debates.

  4. Let He who has never sinned cast the first stone. They can say whatever they want about Trump but
    if anyone in their right mind thinks the trade off for one 1 Deserter for 5 Well Known Terrorist was
    a great trade off, they are in worst shape than Trump could ever be. The other insane deal was to
    give Iran 150 Billion Dollars when they want the U.S. & Israel wiped off the face of the map. Hillary’s
    answer to Benghazi is what difference does it make. If it was your son who died, would you be
    satisfied with that answer, I would never be. People crossing our boarders & deliver their babies in the U.S. automatically become citizens. If Trump did nothing else, this is a Big Wake up Call, like him or
    not, he said the TRUTH. I don’t care who thinks he is nuts, everyone else we voted in was suppose
    to be sane & competent and look where our country is today. Ronald Reagan was a Movie Star who
    became a Governor and then President. Our economy was booming, like him or not. I never vote
    for the party, I vote for the person. I am an Independent, and my opinion is Democrat vs. Republican
    causes division in the country. Each candidate should be voted in for their beliefs not their party.

  5. Trump will land in the same place he did in the last debate. Are you ready for the landing? These
    debates will go down in history and if he ever wins, history will be His Story and what a story this
    will be.

      1. Get over it…this country has become a bunch of sissies and other countries are laughing at the U.S. we’ve become a joke – it’s pathetic…

  6. Any one of us can ‘tell it like it is’. Thankfully, most are intelligent / disciplined enough to screen their rhetoric. In my opinion, Donald Trump is a showoff and thrives on attention, hence the audacity to blah-blah-blah, and get away with it…….for now. American is too savvy to allow this circus to continue for long.

  7. Jamison, You are watching one of the Biggest Shows on Earth regarding Circuses. What the hell
    would you call giving a country 150 billion dollars and they hate our guts, along with Israel, who is
    in the middle of all this madness. We should have gotten our prisoners back for $150 Billion & then
    some. Donald Trump does not have the finesse that all these other politicians and candidates have,
    I grant you, but we need someone with BALLS, whether it is Trump or someone else.
    Our Friends don’t trust us and our Enemies don’t fear us, not a good position to be in. I personally
    think it is frightening.

    1. I’m so happy someone else gets it…I have friends from several different countries and they all say the same thing that no one respects the U.S. anymore…we are a joke…

  8. Totally enjoyed this post and comments !!! Thank You everyone ! Finally words met with my feelings and beliefs !

  9. I never watched his television show because I just didn’t care for his “I love me attitude” but it is now clear that the reason he has been so popular up to this point is he is saying what the average person on the street is talking about. Nothing is being done about out of control & illegal immigration. Although he certainly says things that can make one cringe, he is not afraid to be “politically incorrect” and that in itself is rather refreshing. I doubt if he will become President which only means that a career politician will become President and then…….nothing will change anyway! The poor will remain poor, the wealthy will get wealthier and the middle-class will pay for everything. Unfortunately, the “Promises, Promises Tour” will continue for the next year with every candidate from both political party’s telling everyone they will make America greater but most of us know better. Politicians are wonderful people as long as they stay away from things they don’t understand….such as working for a living!

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