President Trump’s Fourth of July speech at the National Mall was amazingly coherent and hardly at all nonsensical. I was impressed. Sure, he said that the Continental Army seized airports from the British during the Revolutionary War, but we all know that was a natural mistake. His speechwriter wrote “seized the ports”, and Trump said “airports” because those are the ports he knows.
The important thing is, that he can read a speech his speechwriters wrote for him without deviating from it and making it altogether senseless. It’s possible. If only we knew who the handler was who got him to spend most of the speech reading the teleprompter. They’re in line for a medal.
I’ve annoyed Trump supporters because I never say anything nice about him. Lately, a Trump supporter responded.
This week, I listened to a long voicemail complaining about a column I wrote in early June. In it, I griped that the administration was curtailing funding for training fighters of forest fires just when forest fires are getting more serious than ever. The complaint about the column: “Why do you blame Trump for everything? He didn’t cause the fires. The states caused them.”
I didn’t say Trump caused the fires. I didn’t talk about who, if anyone, caused them. I said his administration was drastically reducing funding for the training of new firefighters to deal with them.
Here’s how I see it: Because I never say anything nice about Trump and his administration, any time I put the name “Trump” and “[that bad thing going on]” in the same paragraph, someone will read that as me asserting “Trump caused [that bad thing going on].” Because “Dr. Wes always blames Trump for everything.” They draw that conclusion without bothering to read the connecting words.
I want to correct that habit by talking about some things Trump and his administration have done lately and making a real point of saying nice things about him.
I’ve already started by congratulating his Fourth of July speechwriter and handler(s). Just because the speech mixed up the Revolutionary War with the War of 1812 and had George Washington’s army seizing airports doesn’t mean it was a bad speech.
Here’s another example: A while back, lawyers for the Trump administration argued in court that migrant children in U.S. custody at the border don’t require soap and toothbrushes in order to be in held in “safe and sanitary” conditions.
Just for bringing that up, I know that someone’s going to call in and say, “Dr. Wes thinks it’s the president’s fault that migrant children don’t have soap. That’s wrong. They would have soap if they had stayed home, in whatever hovel they came from.”
But please know that I am not saying that it’s the president’s fault that the migrant children don’t have soap. I’m only saying that the lawyers have said that somehow the children are safe and sanitary without soap. That is wonderful.
I want that. I want the government to do for me whatever they’re doing for the migrant children they’ve locked up, so that they don’t need soap. Or toothbrushes. What’s the trick? Is there a powder they scrub them with? Is it a pill that magically cleans you? Can I buy it in stores?
In an interview, widely cited as wildly incoherent, Trump essentially told Fox’s Tucker Carlson that homelessness became a problem two years ago, around the start of his administration.
People are going to jump to the conclusion that because I am calling attention to Trump’s juxtaposition of the onset of the problem of homelessness with the start of his administration, that I blame the Trump administration for causing homelessness.
That would just be silly. A correlation does not imply cause and effect.
The fact that homelessness became a problem just during Trump’s administration just means that, before he was in office, it wasn’t a problem — to him. It was Obama’s problem. It was the homeless people’s problem. He made that clear later on in the interview, when he said he couldn’t have visiting foreign leaders see all that. “We can’t have that,” he said.
What he’s really saying is that massive homelessness was fine for Obama and George Bush, but it makes him look bad so it has to stop.
This is not bad news at all. It’s good news! It means he’ll arrange to deliver that magic cleaning pill to all of America’s homeless people, so they can be as safe and sanitary as the migrant children we’ve locked up.
Dr. Wes Browning is a one time math professor who has experienced homelessness several times. He supplied the art for the first cover of Real Change in November of 1994 and has been involved with the organization ever since. This is his weekly column, Adventures in Irony, a dry verbal romp of the absurd.
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