When the World is a Circus, Hire a Ringleader

The media is appalled and confused and both political parties edge closer to downright fear. They’ve attempted all sorts of narratives, subjective analysis, and endless predictions as to the fall of one wily celebrity-esque candidate…all of which have fallen short.

I don’t know if Donald Trump is “right” for America. I don’t know if I would vote for him. I do know, however, that I love the ripples his candidacy has caused and I love sitting back to watch Karma in action. To misquote Commissioner Gordon’s observation: Trump is not the candidate America needs, but he’s the one we deserve right now.

Political circles and the media circuit opened this dialogue. They created Donald Trump for President.

On all sides, it has become common to regard intelligent, experienced, public figures as “stupid,” “idiots,” “evil,” “racists,” “bigots,” and, well, pick a negative word to personally attack a person you disagree with. Arguments ad hominem have become an acceptable method to “prove” one’s belief.

I don’t know if there is a real news outlet left in the country. Chose your side, tune in to your group’s spokespeople, and chant along with the rhetoric. Trusted Journalism has become a term on-par with Honest Politicians. Most of today’s news — written, spoken, or viewed — is a Jerry Springer episode sans the chair throwing. How many “journalist” no long want to tell the story — they want to BE the story.

This phenomenon isn’t new. It’s been creeping along for a couple of decades now. The rise of social media has just made it louder, more clear, and more viral. We no longer debate or discuss…we hate, we yell…we lie because, well, the end justifies the means.

So Donald Trump is what we deserve. He yells louder, his attacks are more brutal, he refuses to play by the circus rules. He makes up his own circus rules…and the people cheer. Why not? It’s exactly what politicians and journalist have been doing for years now, Mr. Trump is just proving to be better at it.

Panem et circenses — give them bread and circuses.

When those with public voice, those entrusted to be the word and will of The People, when they decided we are too stupid for our own good, and that it is acceptable to lie to us, to mislead us, and to manipulate us for the things “they” believe, they opened this particular Pandora’s Box. When they fed us distractions and set us against one another, and, when we allowed them to, we all became culpable in setting the table for Mr. Trump. We all contributed to an environment where America interviews a ringleader rather than a president.

Mr. Trump is the “un,” to all things politicians, media, and the elite allege to hold dear. He is un-presidential, he is unapologetic, he is unpurchaseable, he is unmoved by their criticism. The result is “they” cannot figure out the “why” of his popular success. He breaks all the models, he wreaks havoc on the polling, hell, he doesn’t even show up for debates. And for all these things I am glad. We’ve tried both sides of the politics and, in the end, they seem almost the same side.

So I’m willing to throw caution to the wind. I’m willing to see it all torn down, to set these people “who know” back on their heels and let them do what the rest of us have been doing for years now…figure out what it all means…figure out who America is and who it will be…decide if we can ever return to responsibility and civility or if our fading destiny is as a circus.