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Revelations From The State Of The Union

Photo by A Yee | CC BY 2.0

Donald Trump’s State Of The Union address was straight out of the book of Revelations. The world was filled with death, disaster, sinners and saviors. Rather than addressing any of the reasons that this world has become hell on earth, Trump turned his attention to individual heroes. Every individual introduced seemed to be caught up in a near death experience. They were honored because they were not afraid to face this threat head on. Trump celebrated the man who was just plain tougher than his victim (I forget which section of the holy trinity he represented—the border patrol, the police force, or the military).

The threats, which were always lurking, seemed to come from the sky. Who could control the weather? Fires and droughts were revered as a test of manly valor. There was no effort to stop these disasters. They would serve as a test for who deserved to be saved. They would determine who we should thank for our lives. War was treated in the same manner. For what it’s worth, Trump would never have the courage to look his victim in the face, let alone risk his own sorry existence. But how much courage does it take to kill or deport another human being? Like Christ, the poor are are judged by their willingness to give up their own lives. Why do we celebrate the poor who are willing to kill and die in the wars for the rich?

The threat that could be exterminated was the immigrant. They are here to steal our jobs, murder our upstanding citizens, and rape our women. They are not people because they are not Americans. They are not all poison, but as Donald Trump Jr. said about Syrian refugees: “If I had a bowl of Skittles and I told you just three would kill you, would you take a handful? That’s our Syrian refugee problem.” Among the things not addressed in this argument is that as long as we do nothing on the refugee crisis we are leaving these people to die. Even if terrorism was more than a media fabrication, how could we not take in these people? 65 million people without a home and the debate is between whether to take 100,000 or 50,000. Color blind liberalism gets us an extra 50,000 but who could deny that we would save millions of lives if we took in refugees—regardless of whether this terrorist garbage is true? The United States should take in at least 20 million refugees.

Each story was a bigger yawn than the next. Trump, like Obama before him, has become a mere puppet for the powers that be. Whatever values, however sinister, Trump represented when he got elected have given way to the Republican bottom line. Respect the flag, the military, the police, the free market, the constitution, and of course, God. Paul Ryan’s smirked on from behind. Trump’s sloppy claps after his own words gave away that a higher power was behind his empty lines. This is not to the credit of Trump by the way. It shows that he is merely a bully who will step on those smaller than him and bow to those bigger. An insecure bully on top of this. For he does not seek an ideology that suits him. He rather wants pure exaltation. Whether or not his power or his money is real hardly matters. As long as he can fool himself that this is the case. Most of the buildings with the name “Trump” on them are not actually owned by Donald himself. He merely paid for his name to be on the front. Consider the White House to be his latest stunt.

The mood of the night though belongs to Trump. Friends and enemies. Winners and losers. Bosses and workers. Masters and slaves. Generals and soldiers. As long as the hierarchy was respected there was nothing to be feared. If you are worthy you will be saved. If you are not saved, you are not worthy.

Around each corner was a disaster or a murder. Who was behind these deeds? Evil people. Terrorists. Immigrants. Drug dealers. And who could save you from these monsters? Good people. Police. Soldiers. ICE. Donald Trump’s world is a world at war. He called a nuclear free world “magical.” The real world becomes a place where you kill or be killed. Chaos is inevitable. Because people are evil. Good people will save you. But only if you obey.

The earth itself becomes an adversary. Rather than look at the natural disasters as human caused the earth becomes just another beast to slay. For those who are brave enough. Tough enough. Manly enough. Gone was any connection to the earth or the animals within it.

Trump did take a slight break to spread lies about how well the economy is doing. He brought in his token black face with a brand new job and declared that this man was a great welder—another black guy good with his hands! His white boss sitting next to him was given the credit. Then there was that strange story about the pregnant woman who was taking heroin. The male cop informed her that she had a baby in her stomach. After this realization, she just stopped doing heroin, because that’s how it works. The cop then stole this woman’s baby and placed it in the arms of his own wife. The innocent baby was saved. And the sinful woman, who just has sex and does heroin all the time presumably died on the side of the road.

The “resistance”, led by Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, did look pretty put off the whole time. Good for them I suppose. But just a year or two ago they would have been salivating over Obama celebrating the new global economy where we all loved and each other and everything was peachy. Meanwhile they would be shoving the horridly stale Hillary Clinton down the voter’s throats, all the while assuming that anyone outside of their enlightened class was just too dumb to get what was really going on.

Trump’s speech assumes a world at war. The reason this speech has resonance is because both corporate parties have made such a world a reality. Police, military and jails have expanded. Immigrants and citizens have been kicked out of their homes. Climate change has displaced millions. Social programs have been cut. The world Trump paints is not entirely inaccurate, he just has his heroes and his villains confused.

Despair not though, for the end days are a fantasy only for those who wish to punish. For those of us who still believe in love and peace, our world is what we make it.

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Nick Pemberton is a student at Gustavus Adolphus College. He is currently employed by Gustavus Dining Services. Nick was born and raised in St. Paul, Minnesota. He can be reached at pemberton.nick@gmail.com

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