You know Paul Rudnick from his work on movies like Addams Family Values, The First Wives Club, In & Out, and his latest play Big Night which deals with among other things, the aftermath of a tragedy similar to recent events in Las Vegas, Orlando, and Texas. I’ve been following his posts on Facebook and his astute observations have turned to politics and Trump’s toxic influence on America. Here’s his latest…
“Thanks to Trump, we’re living in an age of rage. The anger over his repulsive personality and complete ineptitude hasn’t dissipated, or shown any signs of fatigue. Trump was elected not out of any real concern for America, but from the lowest form of spite, and this has inspired an equal or even greater wave of fury and disgust.
This rage has become the most powerful force in American life today and has attached itself to multiple targets. It’s been rightfully directed at the monolithic corruption of Trump’s administration, as the Mueller indictments are rolled out. It’s been aimed at Trump’s greedy and moronic family. And lately, it’s fueled the massive awareness of sexual harassment and assault occurring in both the celebrity sphere and everywhere else.
There’s been a sense of a dam breaking, which most likely wouldn’t have occurred if the White House wasn’t occupied by a gleeful and unpunished sexual predator. Trump has refused to withdraw his support from Roy Moore, the racist and homophobic pedophile running in the Alabama senate race. Alabama Governor Kay Ivey has admitted to believing Moore’s many accusers, but says she’ll still vote for him, because he’s a Republican.
No wonder the country is at a boiling point.
Steve Bannon, Trump’s most toxic advisor, has often said that the Democrats’ fetish for identity politics will only lead to more Republican victories. He characterizes identity politics as a matter of the coastal elites whining over trivial issues of race, feminism and gender identification. He insists that real Americans don’t care about such silliness.
But I don’t think Bannon has accounted for the rage factor, blasting towards men exactly like Trump and himself, the men who represent the worst of American life, and far too often the men who’ve ruled this country since its inception. The men who can’t drain the swamp, because they created it.
Just this morning Trump tweeted another infantile and bizarre attack on Hillary Clinton. Trump’s been in office for a year, and he’s accomplished nothing. His only defense is to constantly blame a smart and ambitious woman for his woes.
He’s behaving like a caricature of a tiny, frightened man-child, the sort of rich kid whose parents have to pay people to invite their unpopular brat to parties.
Above all else, Trump seems especially terrified of women, people of color, and LGBTQ people, and he’s taken legal measures in an attempt to disenfranchise all of these potential voters. Trump’s the one playing identity politics, as his only means of solidifying his dwindling base. He’s counting on hate, because he’s got nothing else to offer.
The ensuing rage has begun to have positive effects. Democrat Ralph Northam beat a Republican opponent for the Virginia Governorship, and Danica Roem, a savvy and focused transgender candidate, vanquished an especially hateful Republican for a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates.
There are reports of thousands of women registering to run for public office. All of this news, while heartening, is of course still preliminary, and Roy Moore, while behind in the polls, could still very well win in Alabama. His insane wife Kayla has been blustering that the same people who attacked Trump are also attacking her husband. Trump’s wild-eyed supporters will fight to the death, defending their Confederate statues.
Right after the election, there was a vague call for reconciliation, for the elites to reach out to a broken America. This heartfelt but misguided impulse has never taken hold, because it doesn’t jibe with the true, vicious nature of Trump’s supporters, who have no interest in a healing chat.
Anger has been Trump’s weapon, and it’s beginning to be turned against him. Anger can be scary and irrational, but it’s undeniably powerful. Anger, when coupled with dedication and the rise of truly American and fair-minded candidates, could defeat Trump, Bannon and everyone else who thinks of America as their private club.“
(Photo, Pacific Coast News)