Trump Is No Mussolini or Hitler

How to man-handle a self-centered child


When talking about Donald Trump, the comparison to the dictators Mussolini and Hitler has been thrown around quite frequently. Given the demagoguery shared with them, it’s understandable.

In defense of The Donald, I actually don’t believe he’s evil incarnate which is required for the comparison to stick. I believe that he will shed the hatred and the white cloak as soon as he secures the Republican nomination. I wish he’d also shed that piece on his scalp but I’m pretty sure he’s taking that to the grave.

If you look at his history of positions taken on social issues (e.g. abortion) and national defense (e.g. anti-war), as well as support of political candidates (e.g. Hilldeary Clinton), he has been quite liberal. He will reveal that gentler side once he’s battling in the general election.

Then what is he? An eight year old.

I know because I have an eight year old boy. He wants. He wants everything he sees. There is no consideration of how to get something. There is no complexity, no nuance.

For him, life is simple.

For everyone else, it’s hell when you have to say no to the eight year old. That’s when the tantrum starts. The name calling. The bullying. In this case, poor big sister is the easy target, but we all get it.

What makes it harder is that we don’t believe in discipline, either in the form of punishment or reward. Instead, we try to explain things and engage the child to the point where he can see another side or even step into the shoes of the other person. We have a 90% fail rate; it’s tiresome and frustrating at times. We know it will get better as he gets older and have faith that this will all pay off someday as he becomes an upstanding young man that cares about the world and the people in it.

But he’s our son, not a political opponent. We are patient because we have to be.

The Donald is not your son or mine but we all have to put up with him. He’s a political neophyte who does not play by the rules. He does not play nice. He yells, he demands. He does not care.

His Republican opponents initially tried to reason with him, but civility quickly cratered to an all-out brawl.

Any hope of thoughtful engagement with The Donald is foolhardy. He only sees one side: his side.

One way to understand The Donald is that he is primarily motivated by money and power, and preserving them. That could be a start to help manage and constrain him, but there is really no chance to work meaningfully with him.

So how do you deal with a political eight-year-old if he misbehaves? I have no idea. I can barely handle my own.

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