Advice for my Lefty Friends: How to React to Donald Trump

No, none of my lefty friends has asked my opinion on this topic. But should that stop me from giving it?

After all, no sentient being anywhere has ever asked, “I wonder what Ashley Judd thinks about this political issue?” or “Why won’t alleged funnyman Al Franken give us his criteria for a successful cabinet pick?” or “How long must we wait for Meryl Streep’s next condescending lecture?”

Yet those savants have shared with us their deathless wisdom. So why shouldn’t I do the same? Here goes:

Tip 1: If you start with the outrage meter pegged to 11 for every garden-variety bonehead comment that Trump makes, you’re going to lose your voice, burst a blood vessel, and be thoroughly ignored when Trump does something truly egregious. One of my favorite Simpson’s moments was when the mayor unveiled a presidential statue; the townspeople expected Abraham Lincoln, but Springfield could only afford Jimmy Carter. When the statue is revealed, one character points and says, “He’s history’s greatest monster!”

Trump is likely to be an inconsistent president, but he’s not going to be a Stalin, or a Mao, or an Asmodeus, Destroyer of Men. Don’t be the boy who cried Carter.

Tip 2: Stop calling yourself The Resistance. It’s creepy, and self-dramatizing, and it makes you sound like a 15-year old. (And not a popular, well-adjusted 15-year old.) Trump is not a Star Wars villain or a dictator, and he didn’t come to power by force. He’s there largely because the right track/wrong track numbers last year were upside down, and you ran a shrieking harpy with the personal warmth of a dyspeptic time-share saleswoman and a plan to double-down on the policies that had produced the afore-mentioned ballooning wrong track numbers.

Look in the mirror. Wait, first pull off your ski mask, and then look in the mirror. Doesn’t that black trench coat look ridiculous? The Resistance? Really? C’mon.

Tip 3: Don’t think you are going to get any mileage with most Americans by pointing out how badly Trump is treating the press. Do you not know how despised the press is? Their approval rating is just above ISIS, and below testicular cancer. (The internals are even worse: CNN is only ahead of chlamydia because of Jake Tapper, and his numbers are eroding, so…) Work on improving the accuracy of press coverage, and you might eventually earn a public hearing again.

Until then, the press is the anti-Sally Field: We don’t like them. We really don’t like them.

Tip 4: Consider not insulting everyone you are trying to persuade. Most people voted for Trump not BECAUSE he made crude comments or verbal gaffes or behaved boorishly, but DESPITE those qualities. He promised to reverse the direction of the last 8 years, and you need to come to grips with why so many people found that prospect enticing enough that they would vote for someone with Trump’s flaws, as the first step to a mature reconsideration of your own past actions and positions.

Or, you can just scream that we’re all racist/sexist/bigoted moronic evil-doers, and see how that works. (Spoiler alert: President Trump.)

Tip 5: We remember Obama. And we remember that you spent the last 8 years getting him his pipe and his fuzzy slippers, and giving him a soothing tongue-bath each time he said something like, “I’m going to stop the rise of the oceans,” and “I don’t know the difference between a rectal thermometer and the other kind, but I’ve come up with the best health plan ever,” and “I don’t know what makes a rifle a semi-automatic, or which end goes in the rectum, but I know exactly how many guns you should have,” and “Thank you for this well-deserved Nobel Peace Prize.”

If you now complain that Trump is a narcissist, we are just going to laugh at you.

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