The Trump Ticket

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Love him? Hate him? Can’t imagine why he’s doing so well in the Republican primaries? Can’t imagine what the Republican primaries would be without him? Trump, with his signature hair style, vulgar quips and unapologetic chauvinism is an enigma in and of himself.   Despite his polarizing personality, Trump has managed to garner the most support from delegates in the GOP than any other candidate; and whether you support him wholeheartedly or get a gagging reflex and queasy feeling at the very mention of his name (there seems to be no gray area here) you’ve got to wonder what the growing sentiment in this country really is. How fed up are Americans with the political process? Admittedly I can attest that I myself, am a little tired of the prototypical modern day politicians, with smug smiles on their faces, little American flag pins on their lapels, and a seemingly dodgy agenda that they never allude to during their campaign.   Well, Trump may be a lot of things, but he certainly isn’t prototypical, nor for that matter, a politician.

The real estate mogul and former reality T.V. star, with no political background is turning reality T.V. time into reality check time for the country.  So, who is Trump exactly, besides somebody that Mitt Romney and John McCain call a “danger to democracy”, or somebody that John Oliver from HBO’s Last week tonight news series, calls a “failed builder and Donald Drumpf”, or Sarah Palin supports wholeheartedly (Yikes!), but seriously, who is he? After all the negative things and offensive things that Donald has said to others, and seemingly others have said about Donald; why is he doing so well? A mere therapist’s perspective and not a political insider can point out some of the good qualities sure!

Donald Trump is funny.

There’s no denying it. The resounding shockwaves of appall and disbelief that come from Trump’s comments are the same that resonate with laughter amongst others. I mean come on, who didn’t think that the bit about how sweaty Marco Rubio is, where Trump doused water over the stage in a Don Rickles type of Rubio impersonation, wasn’t hilarious? Who didn’t think that the five minutes he spent, eluding to the fact that a certain male body part wasn’t small because his fingers were quite average, wasn’t hilarious?

Donald Trump is rich.

I hate to say it, but most of us equate wealth with success and there’s no denying that Donald Trump has been successful. No matter how many failed building projects, or monogrammed Vodkas he puts out, he still is listed as a Billionaire by Forbes and has figured out how to convert his own name into a global brand, and that in and of itself; is impressive.

Donald Trump has no filter.

While most of us agree, that having no filter or internal processor that takes your thoughts and packages them into words that can get your point across, without offending nearly everyone, is important; it’s stale bread for politicians. Politicians have mastered the art of ambiguity and trying to sound appealing to everyone, while skirting the topics and being as vague as possible. Well Trump is not vague, nor appealing to everyone. Trump says what’s on his mind, and that means we never have to worry about him not saying what he’s thinking; see point #1.trump 2

Acknowledging that it is considered impolite to discuss religion or politics without offending a vast number of people in the process, no one here is proclaiming to condemn or judge anyone for their political affiliations, however since there’s never been a candidate like Trump, it is worth noting that there seems to be an ongoing paradigm shift in the American Political Process.   Taken for face value, no one can argue that Trump is entertaining, if not even a bit affable, in the sense that he’s unapologetic and contradictory. However, it’s hard to ignore that Trump has literally offended everyone from women to Muslims, and seemingly every ethnic, cultural and religious minority in between. Trumps contradictions are nearly as bold as his insults when he states that he wants to deport all illegal immigrants and build a wall, but that he loves Mexicans; or when he said sexual assault in the military is to be expected, but he cherishes women; or that he loves Muslims but that all Islamic immigrants should be banned from entering the country.   This is all worth noting, because when Trump’s name comes up in conversation, people I’ve spoken with face to face, usually laugh or shake their head; some even get angry. Yet, how can he be the favorite to win the Republican nomination when everyone hates him and he hates everyone; there’s got to be an explanation. Trump is different because he’s a billionaire who claims to not be swayed by lobbyists and surely isn’t politically correct in any sense of the word. Trump comes across more like your drunken uncle at a holiday party, than a prime time Presidential candidate behind the podium, but that seems to be even more reason for the general public to love him.   Since I’m aware that people’s reactions might change and be filtered by their social consciousness when they’re speaking with someone face to face or in a group of familiar faces, I decided to talk to several random people over the phone instead, to find out what some complete strangers here in the south (where Trump is doing his best), truly thought of “The Donald”.

After all, the burgeoning demographic of Trump supporters in the Southern States surely have something to say about why exactly, they may or may not support Trump.  I decided to do some canvassing of my own, and using my random survey method; the good old white pages to be exact, I contacted no fewer than forty names to get some type of local Charlotte take on the Trump phenomenon.

A majority of those whom answered the phone told me “now wasn’t a good time” (didn’t count as part of the survey). However, those that spoke with me, mostly women (28 out of the 40 names), told me that they thought he was an expletive rear end, or a jerk, or offensive. Literally every single woman had something negative to say about the Trump. Where it got interesting is that 20 out of the 28 women who started saying something negative about Trump, then followed it up with something glaringly positive. One woman I spoke with (after laughing at my question of what she thought about the Donald) stated that he was the scariest, most vulgar, expletive rear end she would ever vote for. Wait, what? That you would vote for? The woman, as most of the others also shared, said that they found Trump’s honesty appealing, and that they saw his experience as a billionaire CEO, a good thing for the economy. Only eight of the 28 women I spoke with, stated outright that they wouldn’t vote for him, yet all but those eight women included the “but” conjunction in their statements. As a therapist I can share that when I hear a client say but at the end of a sentence, they are almost always about to discount everything they previously said. If you want to get someone’s honest opinion, just listen to what they have to say after “but”. “He’s a bleep and a bleep, but he does know how to generate wealth, and he says what’s on his mind” was a direct quote from one of the women I spoke with.  Another woman actually said she found him extremely attractive and that was reason enough to get her vote.trump 3

I also spoke with twelve men, and two thirds of them had only positive comments to share about Trump. Mostly that they admired his honesty and no B.S attitude. I took that to mean that they wished they could be like him. Who wouldn’t want billions of dollars, a gorgeous wife, and to say whatever was on their mind without having the repercussions of being fired, ostracized by everyone they cared for, or attacked by their own conscience? One man in particular, shared that he wanted Trump in power because he wasn’t scared to stand up to the Russians. The Russians?

All in all, out of the 40 people I surveyed by random phone interview, it seemed that twenty eight of them would vote for Trump (70%) because he said whatever was on his mind, or that he was a successful businessman, he wasn’t a politician, and oh yeah he was handsome and unafraid of the Russians. If I, as a therapist had to give Trump a diagnosis it would surely be narcissism, that’s a no brainer.   But what’s the country’s diagnosis in that we feel as though we need Trump.   Why do we want Trump? Some experts say it’s because Americans are angry and fed up with the political process; others say it’s because Trump is a household name and people know more about him because of his reality T.V. show. Most experts actually think it’s because he is unapologetic, insulting, and not afraid to say exactly what’s on his mind.   I believe that it’s because Trump plays to our own covert political incorrectness; our internal prejudices to be more precise. In the modern day age of political correctness, where political candidates are bought and sold by corporations and always seem to say the same things and do the opposite, Trump is a breath of fresh air (or stale air as some might point out). I personally do not condemn him, and do appreciate his humor, success, and unfiltered speech. He might even be an effective leader and bolster the economy as he promises. The only caveat for Trumpsters in general should be, that the last leader with no political background, who promised a better economy, didn’t drink or smoke, and had some disturbing things to say about minorities was…….Hitler.

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