Donald Trump, Shitty Person, Worse President, The Worst New Yorker
Yesterday, I briefly sent myself into a panic when I couldn’t get in touch with my mom for about an hour after news broke of some asshole going on a truck-assisted killing spree on the West Side Highway in New York. She doesn’t work or hang out anywhere near that part of the city. She’s fine.
Afterwards, I felt wracked with a sense of shame and sadness, knowing that while I was lucky, there are a number of people out there now who weren’t, who lost friends and family in a senseless act of violence.
Thankfully for me, Donald Trump came to my rescue, proceeding to act like the complete and total coward and imbecile he has proven himself to be time and again since taking office (and well before that). It’s hard to feel bad about yourself when your president is that much more selfish and hypocritical.
For Trump to pander to his white nationalist base, to speak and act without thinking critically, to say hurtful things, to blame others, to ignore reality, is nothing new — he has done this literally every day of his presidency so far. I shouldn’t be surprised. Yet the speed with which Trump, his team, and conservative media (otherwise known as “also his team”) rushed to frame this as an immigration issue, a terror plot, the fault of Democrats generally and Chuck Schumer specifically, was truly astonishing.
Now, to be clear, this was a terror attack. But where was the call to arms when a white man shot 500 people (FIVE HUNDRED PEOPLE) last month? Back then (way back then, in October), it was about thoughts and prayers, about not politicizing tragedy, about doing nothing at all but rage, quickly and quietly, at the universe for allowing this to happen in Our Fair Nation (the only one where this regularly happens). Yesterday, everything was flipped. Policy and politics couldn’t come quickly enough. Blame was cast about like a fly-fishing line.
I don’t want it both ways. If Donald Trump wants to call for extreme vetting — even though the perpetrator yesterday was radicalized while already living in the United States, a common theme among ISIS supporters here — immediately after an attack by a brown person, fine. But he should show similar brazen thoughtlessness by calling for actions that don’t really address the problem when mass atrocities are committed by white Americans. If conservatives don’t believe that guns cause these problems, why not start there?
Trump’s rush to push the blame onto someone else, to conjure up anti-Muslim sentiment, truly politicize tragedy, demonstrates that despite being born in New York and living there most of his life, that Donald Trump is the worst New Yorker. He’s a liar, a coward, a bigot, a hater, a loser.
I remember the days after 9/11, young though I was. Anyone in New York around that time can tell you about how the city came together, comforted one another, strengthened one another, talked to and cried with and loved one another. Everything good about New York floated to the surface in those days after the 11th, and I never felt more connected to my neighbors, who I considered everyone in my building and my block and on every block, stretching to Rockaway all the way up the last stop on the 2 train.
Maybe that’s because we didn’t have Twitter. Or maybe that’s because our president wasn’t tweeting. Or maybe that’s because Donald Trump wasn’t president. I can’t imagine a 9/11 under Donald Trump. Instead, we have 10/31, and I shudder to think what his reaction will be to the next tragedy. Blame or silence? Hate or ambivalence? Either way, fuck him and the Republicans in Congress who support him and the Fox News pundits who give him all his policy ideas.
New Yorkers are better than this man who claims New York as his hometown. He may not deserve to be in Washington, but he deserves to live in the swamp of his own creation. When your time is up there, Donald, do us all a favor and don’t come back.