Sailors have many tales of the dangers of the seas, which include vicious sea serpents and whirlpools. And for the terrors he strikes in many people today, Donald Trump might be compared to these dangerous creatures.
Trump might also be compared to the Kraken of Norse mythology and Charybdis, who has appeared in many Greek myths, including in the story of the Odyssey.
The Kraken is described in these myths as a huge sea monster that dwells off the coasts of Norway and Greenland, and perhaps the legend comes from sightings of giant squids that can be as large as 40 to 50 feet. The first references to the creature come from the late 13th century Old Iceland sagas, where it was called the "hafgufa." It was feared because of its many tentacles which could ensnare the masts of ships and drag them down to the icy ocean depths, and it could create a deadly whirlpool by submerging itself underwater to suck in the ships.
As one 13th century saga described it, the Kraken is "the hugest monster in the sea. It is the nature of this creature to swallow men and ships, and even whales and everything else within reach. It stays submerged for days, then rears its head and nostrils above the surface and stays that way at least until the change of tide." Later, Swedish author Jacob Wallenberg described the Kraken in 1781 thus: ""He stays at the sea floor, constantly surrounded by innumerable small fishes, who serve as his food and are fed by him in return...His excrements nurture in the following an army of lesser fish...Gradually, Kraken ascends to the surface, and when he is at ten to twelve fathoms, the boats had better move out of his vicinity, as he will shortly thereafter burst up, like a floating island, spurting water from his dreadful nostrils and making ring waves around him, which can reach many miles. Could one doubt that this is the Leviathan of Job?" The Kraken even appears in Melville's 1851 novel Moby Dick¸ when the Pequod encounters a great live squid compared to the great Kraken.
As for Charybdis of Greek mythology, she sounds much like the Kraken. Originally, she was a water nymph and goddess of the tide, who was too successful in carrying out the wishes of Poseidon, her sea god father, in riding the storms onto the land to flood towns, forests, and beaches. As a result, Zeus grew furious about her claims on the land and turned her into a sea monster - a huge fat beast with a giant mouth. Then, he chained her to the bottom of the sea in the Strait of Messina. There, three times a day, she continued to suck down water from the sea and spit it out to create the tides, but she also swallowed anything that got caught in her whirlpool. As a result, when Odysseus on his voyage back to Ithaca had to choose between sailing by Charybdis or Scylla, a sea monster in a larger rock, he preferred to risk the death of some of his men to Scylla than all of them to Charybdis.
Trump has many parallels with both mythical monsters. Much like the Kraken with his huge tentacles, Trump has his tentacles everywhere in his many real estate and other businesses. Also, like both the Kraken and Charybdis, he swallows up and drags down those who get in his way, from other businessmen to politicians. Among other things, Trump has taken the land of those opposing his expansion through eminent domain, such as when he attempted to take the land of Vera Coking, an elderly widow, in Atlanta City to build a limousine parking lot for the Trump Plaza hotel, though he eventually lost, as described in a blog by Neo-Neocon, "Donald Trump loves the regular folks - unless their homes happen to stand in Trump's way." Additionally, Trump sought to condemn five small businesses so he could build an office and entertainment complex in Bridgeport, Connecticut, and won, as Ilya Somin describes in "Donald Trump's history of domain abuse". In Scotland, he tried to similarly push local homeowners out of their homes to build his golf course, insulting many of the property owners, such as calling one man "the village idiot" and claiming he "lives like a pig." Plus, there are the many media people and politicians who he has attempted to insult or destroy, like the Kraken or Charybdis swallowing up passing ships, if they opposed him.
Thus, much like the sailors of yore, many politicians have tried to get out of Trump's way, so they aren't pulled under by his tentacles, but now a growing number of opponents have joined forces to take him down. More and more media voices are speaking out, while many Republican Party establishment members are coming forward to oppose him and support another candidate, in order to avoid the dangers of the Trump Kraken or Charybdis.
Gini Graham Scott, PhD, writes frequently about social trends and everyday life. She is the author of over 50 books with major publishers and has published 30 books through her company Changemakers Publishing and Writing. She writes books and proposals for clients and has written and produced over 50 short videos through Changemakers Productions and is a partner in a service that connects writers to publishers, agents, and the film industry. Her latest books are Scammed, Lies and Liars: How and Why Sociopaths Lie and How to Detect and Deal With Them, and The New Middle Ages: How the Growing Inequalities Between Rich and Poor Threaten Our Way of Life.