If you’d told me in March of 2016 when I first got this blog, thinking that I was going to write about nature and the Stations of the Cross, that I would spend the next seven years ranting about what a bad person Donald Trump was and having devout Christians clutch their pearls at me for doing so, I would have laughed at you. But you would have been right.
Oh I’ve written quite a bit about nature and a whole book on the Way of the Cross, I’ve written about chronic illness and homeschooling and not homeschooling and all kinds of things. But every once in awhile, I have to put on my hazmat suit and wade into the sewer that is American politics, to remind people that Donald Trump is a bad person. He’s an exceptionally bad person and a threat to our democracy, because his cultists insist on making him a threat, but he doesn’t have to be. He’s also an idol deceiving Christians, which offends me as a Christian, but he doesn’t have to be that either. This could be over at any moment. At any moment, the people inexplicably still clinging to him as their Lord and Savior could say “I give up, I can’t pretend anymore. Donald Trump is a moron and a narcissistic sociopath and I don’t like him,” and he would quietly go to prison and we could all think about something else. No one would ever have to talk about Donald Trump or listen to his increasingly deranged speeches, and the world would be so much better. But they don’t do that, so here I am.
In any case, the new, NEW reason that Donald Trump is all over the news is that he was found liable for business fraud in the state of New York.
This is already a done deal and there’s no question as to his guilt; he’s simply on trial to find out how many millions of dollars in disgorgement he’s going to have to pay back. Mr. Trump has been found in a court of law to have drastically inflated the values of his properties in order to get bank loans. His properties aren’t worth nearly what he said they were. The man is not anything like as rich as he pretended. He’s not a jet-setting multibillionaire and he’s certainly not a shrewd businessman. He’s a spoiled son of a rich man with ties to the mafia who has lied about his assets and fallen up. Now his businesses are going to be liquidated and he’ll be left with nothing. It’s about time.
I just have two tiny little questions for his disciples: WHY DID ANYONE EVER BELIEVE HE WAS RICH? WHAT DINGBAT BELIEVED HE WAS A SHREWD BUSINESSMAN?
Why did you believe he was so rich?
LOOK at Mar-a-Lago. Just look at the photographs. Ignore the top secret documents for a moment and look at the decor. That place has clearly not been remodeled since 1979. The carpeting looks like something you’d find in a a 90-year-old hoarder’s house. The countertops in the bathroom are gaudy marble that was fashionable forty years ago but the shower curtain and trash can are from Dollar Tree. If I was going to take a Florida vacation but walked into a hotel as trashy-looking as Mar-a-Lago, I’d check out immediately and find a Holiday Inn. Look at the man himself. His suits aren’t tailored and he does his own makeup. Nothing about Trump looks like a man who is comfortably well monied and accustomed to living that way. It all looks exactly like he’s a con artist desperately trying to convince you he’s wealthy. Which, as it turns out, is exactly what he is.
This has been glaringly obvious for decades.
Why did you believe he was a shrewd businessman? The man is such a terrible businessman that he couldn’t keep a casino open in Atlantic City.
He has never been anything more than a fraud.
Why did you believe in him?
Is it because he had a reality television show where he pretended to be a good businessman? Do you think that reality shows are real? I was just listening to an audiobook this afternoon that mentioned Trump’s stint on The Apprentice, and it’s been weighing on my mind ever since. Does Trump’s lunatic base actually think reality television is real? Do you also think the cooks on MasterChef always happen to be an extremely diverse cast of sparkling telegenic people who know how to play to the camera by coincidence? Do you believe that the competitions on Hell’s Kitchen always end in a tie with only one dish left to break the stalemate by chance? Do you think Chopped can’t afford more than one ice cream machine and that they don’t give their guests a hint of what’s in the basket? Yes, I’m a fat kid who only watches reality shows about cooking, but that’s not the point.
The point is, are you always this gullible?
Or is it just because he promised he could protect you from the people you despise by destroying our whole democracy to establish a white nationalist christofascist state?
Well, he hasn’t done that either– not yet, at least. There’s still time. I am more and more confident he never will, but Lord knows I’ve been wrong before. In 2016 I thought I just had to talk about Trump until November.
I am looking forward to the day when we never, ever, ever have to think about this fraud again.
Mary Pezzulo is the author of Meditations on the Way of the Cross, The Sorrows and Joys of Mary, and Stumbling into Grace: How We Meet God in Tiny Works of Mercy.
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