” “And he’s going to get re-elected.”
Not a day goes by without several friends — Republicans as well as Democrats — saying that to me. It’s the blunt coda to a bloated recitation of Donald Trump’s failures during this pandemic. It’s a whimper of surrender following a scream of disbelief.
Tens of thousands of Americans die; what does the president do? Spreads bad information. Seeds false hope. Reinvents history, reimagines science, prattles on about his supposed heroism, bellyaches about his self-proclaimed martyrdom and savages anyone who questions his infallibility. In lieu of leadership, grandstanding. In place of empathy, a snit. And he’s going to get re-elected.
With that refrain we perform a spiritual prophylaxis. We prepare for despair.
But somewhere along the way, we started to confuse a coping mechanism with reasoned analysis. We began to treat a verbal tic as inevitable truth.
It isn’t. While Trump may indeed be careening toward four more years, it’s at least as possible that he’s self-destructing before our eyes.”