The president's parents might have named him Donald John Trump, but his real middle name is "Hate." And who does he hate? Certainly he's a perfect example of toxic-narcissistic self-loathing—and, down-deep, he very much hates himself. That said, he presents the diagnostic marker of an incessant need—the need to find an adoring supply of deaf, dumb and blind admirers to tell him he's OK. Utah has the dubious distinction of being among the 37% of Americans who still claim that Trump is a stable genius and a wonderful president. Such delusions certainly reek of bad scientific method and an intentional disregard for evidence, but, after all, that's the benefit of living in a vacuum. In the absence of essential information, you won't be troubled with nagging anxiety over what the monster will do next. Unfortunately, those who fully understand the biblical passage about how, "Every matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses ..." face each new day with the horror of our present news cycle.
Consistent with his narcissistic personality disorder, Trump has a pseudo-affection for people he views as powerful—at least the ones who haven't expressed their disgust for him. Chances are, if a man (yes, it must be only a "man") is denounced by the world community as the worst of human-rights abusers, the president holds that person in high esteem. On his "most-admired list" are Putin, Erdoan—whose name Trump can't even pronounce—and Netanyahu. These are all men who should be facing prosecution at The Hague, but Trump views them as hero-buddies. Everyone else is someone to hate, which includes most ethnic Americans, Kurds, Muslims, virtually every "loser" in Mexico and Central America who wants to escape poverty and oppression, and decorated war heroes who failed to evade capture and apparently didn't have the smarts to feign bone spurs. To that list we can add women. His lifetime behavior toward women says it all.
Despite his mostly charmed, born-to-wealth existence, hate seems to be the very essence of the toddler-man, who predictably lashes out at everyone who recognizes his true character. He seems unable to understand that it's not others who are out to get him—the "witch hunt" he loves to bash—but that his present predicament is the natural consequence of his own deplorable behavior. All his life he's enjoyed continuous free passes, but those will likely end. His thuggish criminalization of the White House is coming back to haunt him, and, even though it's possible that impeachment efforts could somehow fail, if the feds don't get him, New York's prosecutors will. The writing is on the wall. He might be the de facto leader of the Christian Right, but he has not yet experienced his real come-to-Jesus moment.
"Damn it!" Trump constantly laments, peering into what should be the tranquil surface of the water. "Who is causing the waves on my pond? Stop it. I can't even see the beauty of my own face." Even his prominent comb-over is lost in the aqueous disturbance, and his pleasing delusions are becoming more elusive by the day. A normal man would not be at all surprised by the scenario, the frightening narcissistic nightmare of his de-pixelating appearance. The reality of the situation is that he's never once failed to make his own waves. Somehow that concept has totally missed his brain. (Obviously, there's no marksman good enough; it's a pretty small target to hit.)
In a world wherein Trump has almost always muscled his grandiose way into perverse delusions of success, he now faces a specter of growing voter distrust. Actually, that's not accurate; the distrust was always there. By Election Day 2016, everyone had been exposed to just what kind of man he was—but now Americans are having it rubbed in their faces, and there are few people who like their faces smeared with crap.
When Trump looks into the ripples, he's horrified to see 340 million other faces looking back at him, and they aren't the smiling, mindless yellow emojis that get tacked onto the tail of each tweet. Even worse for Trump, his few tenacious, mindless minions seem to share his own definition of "loyalty," which is absolutely zero. It would be almost impossible to believe that, at least at some level of cognition, he doesn't know the truth—that when his peanut gallery of amused yes-men are finally shaken by his felonious and treasonous acts, they, too, will bail. That's simply the way politics works. It's not about love and loyalty; it's only about the vote. When his bought-and-paid-for "friends" are faced with their own, tenuous political futures, Trump won't have anyone to call an ally—just a lot more people to hate. And, though she likely shares much of Trump's vacuous values, my guess is that Melania will take her highly-chiseled face and silicone curves and make her escape. After all, it was the illusion of success that drew her to Trump, but I suspect she'll be able to fully grasp the reality: It's no fun to be married to a loser, and her divorce settlement will certainly tide her over until another rich scumbag comes along.
Let's face it, impeachment is not a happy word, but Americans need to look at the congressional hearings as a new hope for salvation. When Hate no longer sits in the Oval Office, our country can recover its soul of law, order and humanity.
The author is a former Vietnam-era Army assistant public information officer. He resides in Riverton with his wife, Carol, and one mongrel dog. Send feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org