Donald Trump: E Pluribus Unum


Photo credits to © Lucas Jackson / Reuters

Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump poses for a photo after an interview with Reuters in his office in Trump Tower, in the Manhattan borough of New York City, U.S., May 17, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Written by Luke Herzog, Journalist

President Trump. Those two words, seemingly fantastical only a short year ago are now a fast-approaching reality. E pluribus unum. Out of many, one. How quickly America forsakes its motto.

The United States has elected a man who in his first speech announcing his candidacy categorized the majority of Mexicans who flee across the border as drug dealers, rapists, and murderers. A man who would overlook the first amendment to implement a Muslim ban. A man who has treated women like prized trophies, defining them only by appearance. The list goes on and on. Imitated a disabled reporter, stiffed countless individuals who worked for his company, refused to release his tax returns, claimed global warming was a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese, advocated war crimes by suggesting slaughtering terrorists’ wives and children, attacking the concept of free press, supporting torture to such an extent that something “worse than waterboarding” may be in store, allegedly sexually assaulting multiple women.

Indeed, Trump stands as nothing less than the epitome of division. Turning groups against one another. Generalizing, villainizing, fueling nativism. In a hyperbolic haze, he provokes outrage. Blurs the line that used to rigidly define fact. “Tear down this wall” becomes “the wall just became ten feet higher.” Whatever happened to “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself”?

Trump needs fear. He built a successful campaign upon it. And fear catapulted him from reality television to the Oval Office. His demagoguery was masterful, I’ll give him that.

There’s very little upside here. But a lot can happen in four years, and with Trump at the helm, unpredictability is the new norm. But somehow I remain optimistic. The man is a walking caricature. Comedian Dana Carvey called the President-elect a “Batman villain.” And just as a nation gripped by fear and hatred and ignorance is a perfect recipe for evil, from great tragedy emerges the greatest heroes. A Batman (or Batwoman) is out there right now. And in four years they may make themselves known.

Bruce Wayne’s parents just got shot. It’s heartbreaking, and terribly upsetting. But in the end, who knows? Gotham may be thankful for the person it creates.