A problem of address.
How does one refer to the regrettably elected President Donald J. Drumpf of the United States of America?
I’ve been circling this problem in my brain for weeks now. I don’t want to condone him, or normalize him, or in any way legitimize him. However, I’m from the South and the iron bands of propriety lay heavy upon me — it would be easy to pick a silly name that I want to refer to him, but that feels wrong. For worse and ill he was elected, and his proper title is ‘Mister President’. From the small amount of research I’ve done, addressing him as ‘President Drumpf’ is actually incorrect — only in news reports and other media would you call him that for clarity, when you address the man or the office, he is ‘Mr. President’.
But I do need to talk about him, or at least refer to him in a reasonably clear way. Ooh, but I want to annoy him too. I want for any casual reader to know exactly how I feel about this person. There are already plenty of fun names for him circling the internet, but I can’t quite settle on one that feels like the perfect combination of respecting the office (which I intend to do — as I want the office to still be worthy of respect when he vacates it) — while ice-cold disdaining the man. I’m tempted towards John Oliver’s iconic ‘Drumpf’, but that comedy dagger missed its mark during election season. Here’s my scratch list of potential forms of address:
Mister President Donald
Mister President Donald John Drumpf
mstr prsdnt trmp
pt / PT
Several of these make me laugh — which in dark times is good — but none of them quite fit the space in my head I want to fill. So, for now, I will use one of the office’s less used titles, the one that foreign dignitaries would use to refer to the President of the United States:
In all my ramblings, political thoughts, private discussions, anything where I want to refer to the person that currently holds the office of President of the United States, I will refer to them as ‘His Excellency’. Please savor the delicious irony of this title as it brims over the top of the address. I think it fits, because that’s how I feel, I am writing about this person from another country, another place — somewhere His Excellency will never understand and never visit. His Excellency is engaged in many actions that endanger the people I love. His Excellency is a short-sighted, cruel man and it is my great pleasure to resist his plans.
I have a name for you now. And, for me, that is a start.
I may have to sneak in a ‘President Tromp’ sometimes though, it just makes me giggle.