I Hear Guam is Nice This Time of Year
Do you remember those old videos from the 1950’s in which schools went through regimented nuclear war training with students, teaching them how to huddle beneath their desks in the case of a nuclear attack? Yeah, they might want to bring those back. Because shit with North Korea is getting downright scary, my friends.
Of course, before we do, we might want to recognize that there are two significant flaws with those videos. First of all, anyone who thinks that a desk is going to protect someone from the dangers of a full-fledged nuclear attack is even crazier than Kim Jun Un, whose haircut alone should tell us all we need to know about just how far gone this guy is. Honestly, he looks like the Asian half-brother of “Sloth”, the creature that was locked in the basement of the 1980’s movie The Goonies. Which also brings me to the second thing we had wrong in the 1950’s. The most significant nuclear threat to our nation’s well-being has not come, as much of us would have thought for all these years, from our rival super-power Russia, but rather from a rogue nation led by a laughable but highly dangerous and wildly unpredictable dictator. And in this case, I am not talking about Kim Jun Un. I’m talking about the president we were foolish enough to put in charge of our nation’s nuclear arsenal less than a year ago.
I’ve held off from talking politics in TRUTH: In 100 Words or Less for quite a while now. After a protracted and painful 2016 election cycle, it just seemed necessary to drop the subject for the time being. But recent events have made it necessary to revisit the disastrous decision some of our fellow citizens made back in November of 2016, not to rub it in anyone’s face or shout “I told you so!” because that just isn’t going to help at this point, not when a slew of ballistic missiles are being aimed squarely in our direction. Rather, it is important for us to all come together and recognize that yeah, character and temperament do indeed matter when electing the leader of the free world. You cant just turn your back on the fact that the guy is a nut job because you hope he’ll lower your taxes. There’s simply too high a price to pay for that mistake.
Even before his recent ad hoc comments about North Korea’s aggression that left Trump’s own advisors shaking their heads in disbelief at their incendiary and reckless nature, a HuffPost/YouGov poll from June 29-30 showed that only 30 percent of Americans approved of his temperament as president. As disconcerting as that number might be now that we have seen his hot-headed, unmanageable texts and rantings for eight months now, what is even more disturbing is that we all knew this before we even voted for him. In exit polls from the election, 63 percent of voters found his temperament to be unsuitable for the office of president. But crazy enough, a full 20 percent of those who flunked him for this characteristic still voted for him. And it is precisely these folks who are responsible for the mess we find ourselves in right now with North Korea.
When asked which quality most determined their vote for president, many voters suggested they prioritized qualities like “has the right experience,” “has good judgment,” “cares about people like me,” and Clinton won a majority of these voters. But 39 percent of voters picked a fourth quality—“can bring needed change”—and Trump got 83 percent of those votes. The “change” factor overrode everything else. These people forgot to factor in that change is a neutral word- that’s it’s not always a good thing- especially when ushered in by an impetuous moron with a fiery temper.
In response to recent nuclear testing performed by the North Korean regime, Trump uttered the types of threats that made the entire world shudder, “North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen. He has been very threatening beyond a normal state. They will be met with fire, fury and frankly power- the likes of which this world has never seen before.” But then when even people in his own camp, those with military experience who know better than to issue either inflammatory threats that can escalate to an actual military conflict or empty threats that weaken our nation’s credibility, urged Trump to back away from his original comments and tamp down the tone of his rhetoric, did he do so? Of course not. Instead this rabble-rousing fomenter actually doubled down on his crazy, suggesting that perhaps his original comment “wasn’t tough enough”. And thus we stand on the brink of war, all because we elected the guy who is every bit as nuts as their guy. But in North Korea’s defense, at least they didn’t elect their lunatic.
Now are you Trump voters who acknowledged that his temperament was not presidential even as you were pulling the lever to elect him finally willing to admit that you made a catastrophic mistake? Brought to the brink of a nuclear conflict just eight months into the Trump presidency, are you now ready to concede that character and temperament might be important factors when deciding who we give the nuclear codes to? Or, like the man you voted for, will you double down on your crazy and say this is just the type of man we need in charge of the United States military? I hope not, but if so, could you move to Guam? I hear the beaches there are lovely.
Steven Craig is the author of the best-selling novel WAITING FOR TODAY, as well as numerous published poems, short stories, and dramatic works. Read his blog TRUTH: in 1000 Words or Less every THURSDAY at www.waitingfortoday.com