I love American politics. I love the unapologetic theatre, the passion, the pundits, and yes, even the sleaze.
Here in Canada, and definitely in England, people have been known to sneer a little at American politics, calling it a "circus", lacking "substance" or "dignity".
But I don't listen to those people. And nor, I'm sure, does Donald Trump. In fact, he doesn't really seem to listen anyone who disagrees with him (or anyone who happens to be female. Or Mexican.)
At first, it was funny. I was tuning in just to gape at What Donald Said Next.
But then, he began to gain momentum in the polls, and it started to be Serious. Some political commentators are already voicing what some people may be thinking....
Could Donald Trump be the next Leader of the Free World?
I was reminded of a WB Yeats poem...
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?
Donald's supporters are saying things like.."He's a breath of fresh air" and 'He's not afraid to speak his mind"......only sadly, his "mind' seems to be misogynistic and racist.
But, knowing little about Donald, except that he is an obnoxious billionaire, I did some research.(google). And I found out that he has never had an alcoholic drink in his life!!
His older brother Freddie, died from Alcoholism, and Donald learned from his mistakes. He talks quite candidly in several interviews about his brother's struggle with alcohol and the effect on his life;
"He was a great-looking guy. He had the best personality. He had
everything. But he had a problem with alcohol and cigarettes. He knew he
had the problem, and it's a tough problem to have. He was ten years
older than me, and he would always tell me not to drink or smoke. And to
this day I've never had a cigarette. I've never had a glass of alcohol.
I won't even drink a cup of coffee. I just stay away from those things
because he had such a tremendous problem. Fred did me a great favor.
It's one of the greatest favors anyone's ever done for me" January 2004, Esquire.
He goes on to say in the same interview;
"I've never understood why
people don't go after the alcohol companies like they did the tobacco
companies. Alcohol is a much worse problem than cigarettes"
Now I'm starting to like the guy. Could he be one of us?
I bit more digging, and I found that in 1990, he argued that all drugs should be legalized, and the money put into drug rehab programs. (Sounds suspiciously liberal)
All joking aside, it's about time that we had someone in a position of influence and power to change the conversation and our collective mindset around Alcohol. Someone who could take on the industry, in the same way that the Tobacco industry was challenged - just look at the way attitudes have changed towards smoking!
And who better than someone who has openly spoken about the devastating effect that alcoholism can have on people's lives?
Alas, an hour more research.......
"Trump started selling vodka under his name .
The “super premium” liquor hit shelves in 2006 .... Trump had big
plans for the beverage. He said it would be “a major player in the vodka
arena” because of its quality and packaging"
Sold out before he even begun. I was starting to have a glimmer of hope....but....
Donald Trump is not the Messiah. He's just another politician with a bad haircut.
The Sober Revolution will continue on - not a showy campaign with televised stump speeches, or triumphant rallies, no celebrity endorsements, or town hall debates.
Just a quiet, relentless grassroots movement, started by people who have discovered that when they put down the bottle....
“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.” W.B Yeats.