Note: I’ve chosen not to spell out the name of the Republican presidential candidate for several reasons, not the least of which is my illogical belief that to spell it out is akin to summoning Beetlejuice.
I don’t enjoy discussing politics very much. I’d much rather talk about pop culture, which I think most of you have figured out by now. That said, over the last 9 months I’ve been watching and listening to Tr**p spout off on everything and anything, and I’ve gotten progressively annoyed and disgusted by him. His behavior at Monday’s debate was the moldy cherry on top, to be sure.
But I’ve also noticed something. I have known several white men in their late 60s/early 70s who behave a lot like Tr**p does:
- They interrupt others when they are speaking – especially women.
- They oversexualize everything.
- They say inappropriate things about women or minorities.
- They are masters of microaggression.
- They may claim to not be racist based on their behavior towards particular individuals of a certain ethnic group, but by and large, their behavior and expressed beliefs suggest otherwise.
- They can’t see their privilege or don’t care to see it.
- They believe they are smarter and wiser than damn near everyone else.
- They don’t understand what boundaries are.
- They get defensive when called out on their offensive behavior.
- They rarely, if ever, apologize, and if they do, it’s often couched in terms such as “if I offended you.”
This isn’t to say I hate white men of a certain age. Not at all. But I really do think Tr**p represents a segment of his generation, race and gender that many of us have seen before, in our teachers, colleagues, supervisors, family members.
And so, like those other white men of a certain age, I choose to ignore him. Trying to change these men is futile, like nailing Jello to a tree. It can take years to get them to shift their thinking or beliefs, much less respect boundaries. (Do not ask me how I know this.)
Instead I choose to support those who embrace diversity of opinion and cultures. I amplify voices that speak with love and respect. I point out the fallacies in the logic of the great white dopes of the world. I laugh at their absurdity. And when all else fails, I walk away and focus my attention on being kind to others. Because then I feel I’ve done something productive and beneficial for all of humanity.