Though he reigns supreme among Shakespeare‘s tragic characters, King Lear looks clear-headed and clean-living compared to President Trump. Lear’s naked Narcissism and incompetence brought him to the same epic fall that awaits Trump, but the president’s latest online assault on sanity, decency and dignity revealed a significant difference.
Lear didn’t have Twitter. Trump does, and he uses it like a four-year-old who just washed down a chocolate cake with a six-pack of Red Bull. His main target Saturday and Sunday was the ghost of John McCain. An Arizona Republican and Bona Fide War Hero, McCain died in August after a long battle against brain cancer. All living former presidents attended the funeral. Trump was not welcome.
Trump attacked McCain for his role in passing the infamous “Steele Dossier” to the Justice Department. The president and his cult want the world to believe that the dossier is the sole seed of Special Counsel Robert Mueller‘s investigation into Russian attempts to influence the 2016 election.
It isn’t, but in textbook Shakespearean fashion, Trump and Co. see truth as infinitely malleable.
“Spreading the fake and totally discredited Dossier ‘is unfortunately a very dark stain against John McCain,’” Trump tweeted with his tiny fingers on Saturday. On Sunday, he added: “So it was indeed (just proven in court papers) ‘last in his class’ (Annapolis) John McCain that sent the Fake Dossier to the FBI and Media hoping to have it printed BEFORE the Election. He & the Dems, working together, failed (as usual). Even the Fake News refused this garbage!”
1. The nasty, possibly criminal contents of the Steele Dossier have been neither proven nor disproven. Time will tell. So will snitches looking at long sentences.
2. Time is linear. McCain sent the FBI a copy of the dossier AFTER THE ELECTION. Most media outlets sat on the dossier because its claims were unverifiable at the time. The media didn’t reject the dossier. It protected Trump’s moral right to accuracy and fairness in reporting. How’s that for Shakespearean irony?
Here’s some more: McCain was wounded in combat and endured years of torture in the Hanoi Hilton. When the enemy offered him early release based on his name, McCain refused to come home until all of his comrades could walk out of hell with him. Count me among the millions of Americans who never cared much for McCain’s politics but always respected the scars he earned and carried in the name of all Americans. I remember when so-called conservatives at least claimed to revere such courage, perseverance and service.
Trump used bone spurs and his family name to dodge service in Vietnam. He recently visited there to further his bromance with a communist dictator who starves his own people and murders anyone who even looks sideways at his divine right to rule. Count me among the millions of Americans who don’t think it’s presidential for our commander-in-chief to take cowardly, juvenile potshots at a true patriot recently laid to rest in a hero’s grave.
King Lear’s descent into madness was plain for all willing to see it. His worshipers looked the other way as truth consumed him and his kingdom. Someone should read Trump the Cliff’s Notes between Twitter tantrums.