One of my Republican friends recently remarked about the precipitous declines in the stock market, “I don’t know about my boy Trump with these tariff threats, he’s wrecking the market.”
To which another friend who’s a Democrat replied, “I’m not getting into a discussion about Trump with you.”
As a result of the current chaotic presidency, there’s an ever-widening divide between Reps and Dems. While the Dems will spit and fume over the political situation among themselves, they know that bringing up the subject in front of their elephant-loving friends could be incendiary.
So in mixed company, you don’t hear talk about politics any longer. It’s a taboo subject, like bestiality. While politics used to be fair game, you’d hear friends from across the aisle arguing about taxes, Iraq or whatever the hottest political issue was at that time, now you don’t hear a peep. I’ve been to a bunch of parties recently and heard nary a word.
Even if you’re with one of your own, if you want to talk politics, you’d better put your hand up to your mouth and whisper so someone from the other side doesn’t eavesdrop otherwise a fracas might ensue. It’s like everyone’s nerves are rubbed so raw by what’s going on, it’s best not to bring it up. It’s like someone bought a clunker that burns gas and belches smoke, but no one in the neighborhood wants to rub the owner’s face in it.
Sore subject is what it’s turned into. Talking about politics is worse than bringing up Virginia basketball. Or like asking someone who’s been recently divorced, “You must be delighted he’s out of the picture.” Just try and bring up how things would have been if Hillary had been elected, you’d be lucky if you didn’t get a sock in the eye.
It’s too bad, I used to enjoy spirited tirades about politics. In fact, it can get pretty boring when all there is to talk about is the weather and sports. Especially when there are juicy topics like the porn star. I mean something like twenty-two million people watched her on 60 Minutes, but I haven’t yet heard her name brought up in mixed company. C’mon, there’s good stuff there, bars across the country were crowded with people drinking “Dark and Stormy Night” cocktails. Spanking the president with a rolled up magazine? Stuff like this hasn’t happened since the stripper Fanne Fox jumped into the Tidal Basin and wrecked Wilbur Mill’s career. By the way, after the incident, she changed her stage name from “The Argentine Firecracker” to “The Tidal Basin Bombshell”.
This stuff’s so rich, one wag said the Stormy video is the only one he doesn’t have to erase from his web browser history. “I was just checking her out,” he can say to the wife.
But no, you say, there’s too much at stake. There’s nothing funny about it. North Korea’s got nukes pointed at us, kids are getting shot in schools. It’s too dicey, everyone’s on edge about it.
So what am I supposed to do? Sit on the floor and regale my dogs with these stories? Has our sense of humor been put out to pasture?
“It’s just not funny,” you say.
“C’mon, we still made jokes about the blue dress when the president was getting impeached, about Jimmy Carter’s cardigan when gas prices were going through the roof, in the middle of the Cold War, with the Russians threatening to blow us off the map, we howled over, “Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb”.
C’mon, let’s yuk it up. As Mark Twain said: ‘Against the assault of laughter, nothing can stand.”
Sure there are some things to take seriously, but there are silly things that happen on both sides. If we laughed at some of these antics, the god-awful posturing, the sanctimonious statements, the nonstop prevarications, the nonsensical answers, maybe politicians would get the message and start flying right.
You can do what you want to do, me, I’m going to walk around the farm chuckling to myself about a porn star spanking the president in his tighty-whitieys with a rolled up magazine.