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Pickle Me This

October 2, 2016

I don’t care about Donald Trump.

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I don’t care who Elena Ferrante is. Not one iota. Having read her books, I feel as though she’s given us everything a person might be required to—and more. Which is why I retweeted such a sentiment this morning, only to have a complete stranger respond to the conversation with a (man)admonishment: “lots of things to get angry about this morning and you settled on this…” A complete stranger whose timeline is non-stop Donald Trump. Donald Trump: who I don’t care about even more than I don’t care about Elena Ferrante.

I don’t care about Donald Trump. I don’t care about his stupid hair, or his weak-chinned son, or his parade of wives. I don’t even care about his taxes. There is nothing at all that I could learn about Donald Trump that will confirm anything about him that I don’t know already. I don’t care about his tweets. I don’t care about his Russian ties. I don’t care about his reality TV and his insecurities and his mystique or his appeal. I don’t care about his fucking stupid ball cap. When I never have to see his hideous smirk again, it won’t be a moment too soon.

I don’t care about Donald Trump, and only partly because I don’t live in America and my interest or lack of in its politics has no bearing upon what happens there. I don’t care about Donald Trump, because the same people who pontificate via their Facebook platforms about the shallowness of celebrity culture and the vapidness of teenage girls fixated on selfies are glued to his every move. I don’t care about the debates, which will teach viewers nothing remotely interesting or insightful. I don’t care about Donald Trump, because I’d rather read a novel by Elena Ferrante and also for the same reason I’d rather not read a novel Philip Roth or Martin Amis, or anyone who is determined that the purpose of literature is to “be the axe for the frozen sea within us.”

I am so fed up with maleness, Donald Trump its chief emblem. I am so fed up with nothing being as important as war, except sports, which is a microcosm of the same. I am sick of war rooms and chicanery, and heartless people who proclaim themselves heroic for “making tough decisions.” I am sick of credit being given to contemporary neanderthals for “evolving”—the rest of us did that millennia ago. I am so tired of the sexism, blatant and systemic. For the absolutely shit that women have to go through every day, whether they’re running for office or working in an office. I am tired of valid, heroic protests (a man kneeling during a national anthem, just say) being more controversial than a police officer shooting an innocent person. I am tired of this perception that a life matters more if a person who wore a uniform lived it. The body of a brilliant artist pulled out of a river, and the police officer who racistsplains it all on Facebook. I am tired of Trump and all the other blowhards in pursuit of power (Canadian Conservatives, you people who have no shame and no lows you won’t go to, that would be you) and making all the racist assholes feel pretty comfortable with their points of view in 2016, I am so absolutely tired of the people who are totally loving this train wreck of a presidential election, and feeling morally superior for their attention to it—this is politics, current events, the pursuit of “social justice.” All of you are complicit in making the world a more terrible place.

Naturally the obvious question would be that if I truly did not care about Donald Trump, why indeed have I just written an entire post about not caring about him. A question to which I reply, fervently, as much I don’t care about Donald Trump, I care so very, very much about not caring about him.

So very much that if you need me, I will be reading a giant novel.

Written by a woman.

7 thoughts on “I don’t care about Donald Trump.”

  1. Beth Kaplan says:

    Yay! I’m tempted to say, You go, girl, except that you are a woman, and, You go, woman, doesn’t scan. Wonderful to read. Thank you.

  2. Kate says:

    Yup. The only piece on Trump I could be bothered with was George Saunders’ New Yorker essay, because I trust in his humanity. And even then, I wish I could un-read it.

  3. Margaret says:

    Thank you for that Kerry. So very tired of it all.

  4. Juliet Young says:

    Hello from Paris. I’m afraid my thoughts run contrary to yours on this particular subject.

    You should care about Donald Trump. Deeply. Because he is part of this world and you are part of this world and this is the world that we live in today. This is the world that your children grow up in and will live in tomorrow. You should care because you live right next door to the USA, the country that spawned Trump. They (the Americans) are not only your neighbours, but your trading and economic partners with whom you share a common language, a very long border, and many, many cultural references.

    The point I’m getting at is – what happens there could very easily happen in Canada. You got close with Harper. Here in France, we have Marine Le Pen.

    There’s a lot, actually, that you can learn from Trump. Like who his supporters are…why they are the way they are and how on earth did they (and Trump himself) manage to get so far in the run to the White House. Because it’s scary. Damn scary. Which is why we doubly need to understand, stay informed, listen to the debates and be engaged. Not disengaged.

    You’re fed up with war, you say? Then I guess you’re not a fan of Hillary Clinton either. It’s not just men who are warmongers. Not only did Hawkish Hillary support the war in Iraq, but her personal intervention in Libya (the removal of Muammar Gaddafi who provided stability in the region), proved to be an utter, utter disaster.

    see Huff Post article – “How Hillary Clinton Turned a Stable, Developed Nation Into an ISIS Safe Haven”

    It’s not just men who are irresponsible assholes. Before I sign off, one last famous line from a woman, Hillary’s neoconservative friend, Madeleine Albright. Asked on national TV by a journalist “We have heard that half a million children died in Iraq. That’s more children than died in Hiroshima. In your opinion, was the price worth it?”

    Albright responded, “It was a very hard choice, but, yes, we think the price was worth it.”

    If you need me, I’ll be continuing to read and learn about world news and events (whether I like the people or not). Because I’m a citizen of this world. And it concerns us all.

    1. Kerry says:

      But there is so much in the world. Paying attention to other things isn’t being disengaged. And again, all of these things we can learn from Trump are familiar to any student of literature. It’s not that I don’t want to know, but that I know too well already.

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