February 7, 2017, is a day that will go down in history. For on that day, an American hero emerged with the audacity to speak truth to power. That hero is Pennsylvania state senator Daylin Leach. And on that day, in that moment, this true American patriot rose with the courage of a thousand men, and in a rallying tweet that echoed around the world, across generations and throughout the pages of history, Daylin Leach called Donald Trump “a fascist loofa-faced shit gibbon.”
I now believe this is the only term that accurately conveys the respect our commander-in-chief deserves. I was toying with lying loofa-faced shit weasel and pathetic loofa-faced shit hamster, and reasonable cases can be made for both, but fascist loofa-faced shit gibbon came out on top. And I say this with no offense to shit gibbons.
My wife Kate often tells me that, in the interest of safety (primarily hers), I shouldn’t antagonize rabid Trump supporters. She further said this week that if I didn’t make my Facebook feed private, that she would divorce me (or was it unfriend me? – same same). So I made my feed private.
The thing is, I had recently posted an article about Trump’s lying, ironically called “More Lying Lies from the Lamestream Media,” and it turned into a trending post on Facebook (my first trending post!) and was getting lots of responses from people I didn’t even know, which was exciting. In furtherance of open discourse and wanting to build bridges with potentially persuadable Trump supporters, I decided to leave the post open and see what developed.
Turns out that what developed was a relentless onslaught of abuse from a relatively small number of rabid Trump supporters, primarily graphic memes involving the word “butthurt” (butthurt appears to be a major cause for concern in this demographic). One was a picture of Yoda with the caption “Butthurt you are, liberals you must be”; another was Buzz Lightyear with the caption “Butthurt liberals. Butthurt liberals everywhere.” Not the most enlightened commentary, but points for creativity, I guess. In the end, faced with rampant abuse directed not just at me, but at friends who had come to my defense, I had to shut the post down and make it private. Once again, I learned the most painful lesson of all – that Kate was right.
In other news, this weekend was a new low for our democracy. Asked to defend Trump’s lies about vote fraud and his popular vote loss, senior administration bootlick/lackey Stephen Miller said: “It is a fact, and you will not deny it” (except that, you know, we will ) “that there are massive numbers of non-citizens in this country, who are registered to vote…. And I’m prepared to go on any show, anywhere, anytime, and repeat it and say the president of the United States is correct, 100%.” Essentially, he promised, as a spokesman for the administration, to lie, repeatedly, unashamedly and without remorse, on national TV, over and over again, for no good reason. One can only imagine if it was something that actually mattered.
We’ve passed the point of reasonable discourse with the administration and many of Trump’s supporters. You can’t have a rational conversation with someone who denies the existence of facts and truth and the need for evidence to support otherwise baseless assertions. There’s a word for people who repeatedly assert things without evidence: liar.
So a modest proposal: let us all agree that any dialog or engagement with Trump officials or supporters must begin with the following questions:
- Do you agree that truth and facts matter?
- Do you agree that your assertions should be supported by evidence?
- Do you agree not to lie at any point in this discussion?
- Are you lying right now?
Because without these ground rules, media is nothing more than a propaganda arm of the administration, and engagement is nothing more than a meaningless exercise in bloviation.
I’ve seen otherwise reasonable people posting a memes that say we should focus on Trump’s policies, not his orangeness. I couldn’t disagree more. Faced with an administration full of shameless liars and hypocrites, the only patriotic response is ridicule. Repeated, unabashed, scathing ridicule. And I am nothing if not a patriot.
So from this day forward I will express my patriotism, repeatedly and without remorse. And I’m prepared to go on any show, anywhere, anytime, and repeat it – that the President of the United States is a fascist loofa-faced shit gibbon, 100%. And I will continue this public display of patriotism until the day said shit gibbon is frogmarched out of the White House in handcuffs.