12:29:15 pm on
Monday 19 Aug 2019

Acting Unpresidential
AJ Robinson


Upper Left, President Bush consoles a survivor;
Upper Right, President Clinton consoles a survivor;
Lower Left, President Obama consoles a survivor;
Lower Right, President Trump gives the thumbs up to
the mass killing of 30 women and men in one day.

I’ve written of mass shootings. I made it clear I had nothing more to say on the issue. It’s my firm belief that we, as a country, will never do anything meaningful about these tragedies, other than the usual.


Wait for the biggie.

The usual, you know, is to give our thoughts and prayers, protest gun violence and promise action. Blame everything possible, other than too many assault weapons in our society, such as video games, immigrants and rock candy, but then don’t act. Oh and then the biggie, waiting for the next one, which will occur as surely as the sun rises in the east.

No, I’m not going to say anything along those lines. Still, I feel compelled to speak on one very important issue: The Great Orange and his reactions to mass shootings. Once more Trump has degraded the office of the president and taken our nation to a new low. I was a bit surprised that he managed to do that when it came to something so tragic and so solemn, but he did.

Mind you, I said, “a bit surprised,” not very or a great deal. No, given his record of accomplishment, I had a feeling he’d screw it up, but I never expected him to take it this low.

Let’s run down the list. First, when the two shootings took place, he was slow to respond. Clinton, Bush, Obama made statements quickly both condemning shootings and offered words of comfort to the victims of shootings that took place while they were in office. Trump was too busy golfing, at his resort, on the dime of the taxpayer, and partying with friends to be bothered with either shooting until days later.

Next, Trump blamed all the usual scapegoats. It was violent video games, mental health, immigrants, decaffeinated coffee and so on. Interesting, how susceptible young White men are to outside influences that drive them to all do the same thing: shoot many people.


He visits Dayton and El Paso.

Then there are his visits to the sites of the mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio and El Paso, Texas. In Dayton, he stayed behind closed doors. He lied regarding his reception, saying it was cool, when Senator Sherrod Brown and the well-spoken Mayor of Dayton, Nan Whaley, publically said the opposite.

In El Paso, Trump degraded himself in a manner I didn’t think a human could. First, he banned the press from the visits he made inside the hospital. Now, you could argue that he was trying to respect the privacy of the victims, but many recovering survivors apparently didn’t want to greet him.

White House staffers were on hand, in El Paso, to record the visit for use in campaign advertisements. Really, is using footage from a tragedy for crass political purposes acceptable, not. I think I threw up a little in my mouth when I heard that.

Then there were the images released from the Great Orange. Did they show him consoling the wounded, listening to the words of the survivors or physicians regarding what the people had gone through? No, they showed him smiling and giving a good old and cold “thumbs up,” as Melania awkwardly held an infant whose parents died protecting him. Again, really, he was smiling at a horrific event that will scar El Paso for years to come.

Finally, there were his words, which, as always, were self-serving and focused on him. He insulted Beto O’Rourke, made fun of his name. Again, he claimed that his crowd size was the biggest.

Really, Donald, you’re still going on about size. Why is that, do you have an inferiority complex regarding the size of something more personal. You know what Siggie Freud might say.

Then Trump said his crowd and those to whom he spoke showed him great respect and noted how he was wonder wonderful. That was when I knew just how low our nation had fallen. This narcissistic, bigoted, misogynistic, racist moron made the event his not the victims and their families; hijacking the attention owed mass shooting survivors is beyond the pale.


Tell me how he stays in office.

I am making a formal appeal to any Trump supporters. Please, explain how you justify supporting this person? Post a response somewhere, email me with a report, do something. Help me understand how any normal person, with a shred of decency, can think this idiot is worthy of the title of President of the United States.

Combining the gimlet-eye, of Philip Roth, with the precisive mind of Lionel Trilling, AJ Robinson writes about what goes bump in the mind, of 21st century adults. Raised in Boston, with summers on Martha's Vineyard, AJ now lives in Florida. Most of the time he writes, but sometimes he works at Disney World to renew his fantasies and get a few dollars more. AJ writes, with insight and passion, about his family and his dog. His liberal, note the small "l," sensibilities often lead to bouts of righteous indignation, well focused and true.

More by AJ Robinson:
Tell a Friend

Click above to tell a friend about this article.