Trump, the supreme leader
If Americans cannot keep the world in order, everyone else has a legitimate right to come up with an order of their own
It’s done. Donald Trump has settled into the house that belongs to an entire country, and he is enjoying a unique experience. Besides becoming the 45th US president — we will now see his face alongside Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt, Lincoln, Kennedy and Obama — for the first time he is sleeping in a house other than his own, and he is getting his first lessons on the difference between the public and private spheres. That’s because the new resident of the White House confuses the events that propelled him to 1600, Pennsylvania Avenue with the meaning of the revolution that he has unconsciously triggered.
The world is now divided in two: those who think they will die at the hands of the Twitter hero, and those who have already come to understand that presidential duties may in fact be learned, but that the road to becoming a prudent, humble leader comes at an unimaginable cost to humanity. You cannot start turning the modern world upside down with your little toys, opinions, offenses and self-interest, simply because you are amazed and full of yourself at having conquered the Oval Office against all odds. The whole planet is quaking in its boots, and for good reason. Apparently the only person who is not trembling, and who will therefore become the main victim of the earthquake he himself has triggered, is Trump.
Meanwhile, Hollywood actors have launched into a rendition of Gloria Gaynor’s I will survive to remind their new president that they will indeed survive, despite everything. And some US media outlets are now seriously considering the possibility of not even covering the Republican’s activities. The Chinese, for their part, have understood that regardless of their goals for 2030, the plan for now is to reinforce their own role so that One-China will play a bigger role in the world.
What will it take for Twitter to cancel the account of someone who denigrates, insults and persecutes a considerable chunk of humanity?
And we, poor mortals who are now being governed by tweets, must start applying the logic of systems, even if we are dealing with the complete transformation of the world as we know it. Trump’s inaugural speech left no room for doubt: what he is offering is resentment, terror and hate. He wants to put an end to “this American carnage,” but he does not explain who is to blame for it. And he also announces that his thermonuclear weapon, that is to say his tweets, will guide his political activity, which will have to be followed on his timeline. Being an candidate with no filter worked for him during the election, but there is something else at play here now. And I ask myself: if he continues to issue offensive, insulting, racist and misogynistic comments, why has Twitter not closed down his account, as per its own policy? And what will Trump do from the official presidential Twitter account?
The logic of systems is the logic of systems, and we need to accept that the system is now a terminally ill man, if not a corpse already. However, there are factors that continue to be essential to democracy, and which are perfectly condensed in the famous quote by Thomas Jefferson: “Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter.”
And this is true, no matter what Trump says – even though on Saturday he asserted that he is “at war against the media” and that reporters are “among the most dishonest human beings on Earth.” We need to restore our dignity and sanity in the face of this Twitter hero. And this can only be achieved by embracing the blow of incredulity, by accepting that the unthinkable has come to pass, and that the only thing that can save us at this point is a return to civilizing values.
Let me insist: what will it take for Twitter to cancel the account of someone who abets harassment, who denigrates, insults and persecutes a considerable chunk of humanity? Never mind that on November 8 – without a majority of the popular vote, but with a majority of the Electoral College – the American people elected him president.
Ever since 1945, Uncle Sam has been taking it all in exchange for keeping the world’s backyard in order; but now, it is bringing disarray instead. And if Americans are unable to keep the house in order, then everyone else has a legitimate right to come up with a new order, regardless of whether they speak Mandarin or Russian – because the only existing world order right now is the order of the blue bird, who appears to have gone crazy [Translator’s note: a reference to the Twitter logo, and the cartoon character Woody Woodpecker, known in Spanish as ‘El pájaro loco,’ or The Crazy Bird].
English version by Susana Urra.