|Mary Wakefield Buxton|
by Mary Wakefiled Buxton
Urbanna, Va.— Well, the unthinkable happened. Donald J. Trump was elected President. Since the campaign started over 15 months ago, this was considered a ridiculous, if not impossible, conclusion. Most every newspaper editor and columnist, TV commentator, political pundit, and mavens in academia literally laughed at the thought. Most polls assured again and again that such a preposterous event could never take place. Even many Republicans scoffed at the idea that Trump could ever be elected president.
Truth be told, however, most Americans professed to dislike both Clinton and Trump. The campaigns too often insulted intelligence, offering sparse debate on important issues facing the nation but instead centering on scurrilous personal attacks. New lows were reached in the department of casting mud. Such gutter campaigns possibly inspire humor? Might as well laugh rather than drop dead of disgust.
The two candidates were so evenly matched in the nasty realm that it was uncanny . . . in temperament, wile, and tough street ability to “fight dirty.” They deserved each other. They even looked alike with their perfectly coifed blond hair, blazing blue eyes, and determined set of chins. It was the battle of the century. I called them the “Bobbsey twins” but maybe “Bonnie and Clyde” would have been better nomenclature.
What a battle it was . . . WikiLeaks throwing light on Democrat scheming at the highest levels, sex escapades from the past, the constant web of lies, missing emails and telephone conversations, top secret material found on Anthony Wiener’s laptop (of all people!), earth-shattering pronouncements from the FBI, use of public office to amass fortunes, Trump University litigation, suspicious foundation expenditures, locker room talk, cheating on debate questions, DNC collaboration with national media, slurs on gender and ethnic groups . . . all dropped like bombs on the public almost daily. One wondered each morning what the latest piece of dirt would be. In the end, many voters were convinced that both candidates had such seriously-flawed characters that we ardently wished we could vote “none of the above.”
Most expected in the end that “The Queen” would be crowned. I didn’t even stay up for the election results. Why waste a good night’s sleep over a foregone conclusion? Besides, at age 75 one loses the passions of hard-held opinions. One even sees democracy as rather a game that greedy and ambitious people play, with the zeal of hardened gamblers, in order to get what they want more than anything: money and power.
The morning after the election I arose to learn the good news the Clintons would not be returning to the White House. Hurrah! But then I realized that the Trumps would be moving in. Welcome to democracy.
I’m told millions of Americans are depressed at Hillary’s loss. Well, take heart. The wolves may have arrived at the door but, at least, the rats are gone. The good thing about democracy is there is constant turnover. Stay hopeful. If you don’t like the “ins” today, you might like the “ins” tomorrow.
It makes little difference in my view whether the “ins” are the rats or the wolves. The bottom line is they get richer and we get poorer. I wish people who become presidents didn’t amass fortunes, but they do. I wish they didn’t take lavish vacations around the world at our expense with their huge entourages of staff, friends and family while I stay home and work, but they do. I wish they didn’t use public office to amass millions for their foundations or appoint unqualified people who donate big bucks to their campaigns to plush high-paying government jobs, but they do. I wish they didn’t become fat-cat lobbyists after they serve in office or make millions touring the world giving high-priced speeches, but they do. To the victor go the spoils.
The good news is in America administrations turn over peacefully. Revolutions take place at the ballot box and not in the streets. The only “deaths” that come about are those defeated at the polls. They slink off in the night to their fortunes, job offers to serve on boards of directors or presidents of colleges, and to write their multimillion dollar memoirs. Not such a bad ending.
So take heart. Perhaps the wolf can deliver some of his promise, such as igniting a stagnated economy in order to create more jobs to get America back to work again, secure our borders, or beef up our much-weakened military.
So be of good cheer. It will only be 4 to 8 years of Trump. His reforms might even do some good. And we won’t have to worry about the wolf selling overnights in the Lincoln Bedroom for $50,000 a pop, taking White House furniture when he moves out, or using presidential power to amass great wealth. He already has it.