Friday, January 12, 2018

Here's the Real Shithole

I remember the day after Election Day. I woke up, thinking, well, Hillary kind of sucks, but at least she isn't as bad as Trump. I came downstairs and turned on the news. I watched returns coming in. Hillary was up in this state, and Trump was up in that.

Then a graphic flashed across the screen. "Donald Trump elected President of the United States." It was as if a bad joke had sprouted wings and began to fly right there in my living room. How could this happen? How could an ignorant racist galoot like that ever become President of the United States?

I have to admit I was delighted watching him defeat the evil GOP bastards against whom he ran. Their positions are odious. They don't give a crap about working people. They smile to our faces and stab us in our backs. I deluded myself in believing a preposterous clown like Donald Trump could never win the White House. I mean, the crap about Obama being born in Kenya? Demanding the death penalty for innocent teenagers? The bigoted blather on Mexico? Pussy grabbing?

This guy was the total package. I remember watching Saturday Night Live when Kate McKinnon, portraying Hillary, was pictured dancing and drinking, not even contemplating the possibility of loss. I was sure that morning I'd turn on the TV and see she was President.

That day I dressed all in black. People asked me if I did that because Trump was President and I told them of course. That night there was a UFT Delegate Assembly. I forgot to go. I just drove home. It was the only one I missed last year. People told me it was different and that Mulgrew let people speak. I guess it was a good idea. After all, AFT had been an early endorser of Hillary. I never liked Hillary until Donald Trump became the alternative. Once that happened, she looked relatively good.

Now Donald Trump calls El Salvador and Haiti, and African nations shitholes. A while back he talked about them living in huts. I think Donald Trump has never been anywhere. I mean, he's traveled to cities, I suppose, and stayed in first class hotels where they pampered him like he's always pampered. They fed him his well done steaks with ketchup and fetched him the cheeseburgers he needs to power him up for watching cable news.

But this man is a disgrace from A to Z. He's a national embarrassment. I grew up hearing jokes about banana republics with crooked politics. Look at us. Trump got 3 million fewer votes than his opponent and he's President. He musters the audacity to act as though he has a mandate, even as his popularity swirls the bottom of the bowl.

No, Mr. President. My students do not come from shitholes. They come here looking for opportunity, looking for better lives. They come here to escape violence. And what do they get?

They get Donald Trump. Every day I wonder more and more why they come here at all, and every day Trump shows the world we're not a melting pot, but a festering heap of garbage.

Every time I see his face I feel ashamed to be an American.
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