In another age and another political reality, not only would it matter it would be deadly. The location, condition and happiness of a candidate’s spouse used to matter. But we’re talking about today and we’re talking about Donald Trump and, for whatever reason, Melania Trump’s 11 day disappearance is neither an issue nor a scandal. She’s gone. Oh well.
In another age and another political reality a major political figure under indictment wouldn’t draw huge cheers from a massive crowd anywhere. But we’re talking about today and we’re talking about Donald Trump at Saturday night’s UFC 287 in Miami.
The huge cheers are a little easier to understand, if not morally justify. We’re talking about a sport that tends to draw knuckle-dragging MAGA cretins almost as fast and as sure as NASCAR or WWE wrestling.
And we’re talking about Florida, practically a nation unto itself, filled to the rafters with loonies, where up is down, black is white and good is bad, where much if not most of the low-information population has gone insane in just seven short years. (Yes, yes, I’m speaking statistically. If you live in Florida and you’re a progressive I’m not talking about you, obviously.)
My experience with such situations is fairly puny. Back in 1984 or 1985 I attended an open air Easter service where San Diego mayor Roger Hedgecock was invited to speak. He was a figure of considerable controversy back then, and was either under indictment or was about to be indicted. He received a smattering of embarrassed applause from a confused crowd. No one knew how to receive him. I think his wife was there.
Today there’s no question. Donald Trump will either draw wild cheering or a wall of hate-filled boos depending on what kind of event he attends or what part of the country he’s in. Melania’s proof of life isn’t required.
It’s a world that has been not so much defined by Trump but fulfilled by Trump. Apparently for decades and buried and seething deep underground, has hidden a population bursting to come out and identify itself as racist, stupid, proudly anti-science and boastfully ignorant. It only took someone like Trump to set it free.
Suddenly we’re seeing things we never saw before. Today we live in a kind of post-apocalyptic nightmare where one third of the population have become zombies of some kind. Lucky for us their bite doesn’t turn us into zombies, although rabies shots might be in order.
Meanwhile, 52 year old ex-FLOTUS Melania Trump hasn’t been seen since March 30. She must have decided it would “be best” that she not attend Saturday’s freak show. Whatever you may think of Melania (and my personal assessment of her isn’t great) one thing is certain. She is going to spend the next 18 months to two years as a major subject of a criminal procedure.
Melania Trump is forever redefined as the wife that her piece of shit husband Donald Trump cheated on with a porn star, and she’s going to be made to remember it every minute of every day. Possibly for the rest of her life. Nobody who gets close to Donald Trump ever does well in the end. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.
Robert Harrington is an American expat living in Britain. He is a portrait painter.