‘I Have a Dream,’ of a president with a mugshot? | ‘I Have a Dream,’ of a president with a mugshot?
 
 
 
 
 
 
Emil Amok!

‘I Have a Dream,’ of a president with a mugshot?

/ 11:44 AM August 30, 2023

Consider the iconic images of past great presidents. Washington on the Delaware. Lincoln at Gettysburg. Now add the presidential mug shot: Trump at the Fulton County Jail.

Consider the iconic images of past great presidents. Washington on the Delaware. Lincoln at Gettysburg. Now add the presidential mug shot: Trump at the Fulton County Jail. FULTON CTY. SHERRIF’S OFFICE

“The I Have a Dream” speech of Martin Luther King Jr had a 60th birthday over the weekend.

I wasn’t there. But I was at the 50th in 2013, and back then it seemed like we were moving forward and beyond at a faster rate than imagined. A second term of Barack Obama, the first African American president.

ADVERTISEMENT

We all seemed happier too. Ten years ago, could we have dreamed up a fiction that would place us right where we are now?

At the beginning of a new presidential campaign, with 8 Republican nobodies who can’t get arrested running against one Republican who can.

Get arrested, that is. Four times. He’s the Notorious DJT.

ADVERTISEMENT

And in our strange twisted democracy, a tremendous number of Republicans still can’t quit him.

Consider the iconic images of past great presidents. Washington on the Delaware. Lincoln at Gettysburg. Now add the presidential mug shot: Trump at the Fulton County Jail.

And you don’t have to imagine it. It’s real.

Is he Public Enemy No. 1? No, the former 45th president of the United States is just inmate P01135809.

No man is above the law, or above a mug shot. And Trump deserves it. This is the same guy we all heard on tape asking the Georgia secretary of state to find 11,780 votes. To steal an election? Let a jury decide.

Georgia is prosecuting Trump for his actions in an alleged criminal enterprise conducted with 18 others in an attempt to subvert democracy.

It’s serious business.  But Trump has already begun selling his mug shot merch to adoring fans looking for a souvenir. And grossed more than $7 million in the first weekend alone.

Because everyone wants to buy a T-shirt with a historical mugshot. This isn’t supposed to happen in America. Fortunately, a T-shirt cannot govern America.

So who can stand up to a mugshot?

Republican candidates are still in fear of Donald Trump, pulling their punches if they’re punching at all.

Chris Christie, the former governor of New Jersey seems like the most combative truth teller. But don’t forget he was a Trump insider once. How trustworthy can he be?

For Asian American candidates like Nikki Haley, she’s good enough to compete in a general election, but not bad enough to win the primary. She’s too moderate to win the 30 percent who stick with Trump no matter what.

As for Vivek Ramaswamy,  he’s just as Chris Christie says: Chat GPT. Have prompt, will travel. He’s artificial intelligence posing as the energetic candidate who just wants to be the Brown Trump.

And we know he was a recipient of affirmative action, according to reporting. So what do you do about a guy who rides the elevator up and forgets to send it back down.

You may like: Explainer – Trump charged under law used to prosecute the mafia

Ramaswamy talks a good game about “Revolution,” as if he’s the future of democracy. He isn’t. He’s only concerned about the future of Vivek Ramaswamy.

This is what happens in a democracy where too many people are still in love with a former president with a mug shot.

But we must contrast it with another recent image.

Biden and the banyan tree

After the wildfires in Maui, when Biden traveled to Hawaii, he stood by the banyan tree in Lahaina and said the government was going to be there for Hawaii, “for as long as it takes, we’re going to be with you.”

Biden said he’d be respectful of Hawaii’s traditions and “rebuild the way that the people of Maui want to build. not the way others want to build.”

In these times, that’s plenty enough hope. And now we’re left with a stark contrast. In the race for president in 2024, there’s a caring Biden wearing a lei and an angry vindictive Trump in a mug shot.

Who would you trust? And yet this week, we put the two images together and America seems disinterested in both.

Biden is too old, according to 77 percent of adults in an AP/NORC survey of 1,665 U.S. adults conducted Aug. 10-14, 2023.

On specific traits, the poll found:

26 percent described Biden as  “old, outdated, aging, elderly.”

15 percent said he’s “slow, confused, bumbling.”

Still that’s at least 70 or 80 percent who don’t think he’s any of those things.

Even more positive for Biden, only 2 percent say he’s a “liar, dishonest, and untrustworthy.”

And only 6 percent say he’s “corrupt, criminal, crooked.”

That’s a decent person. That’s a man who deserves to be leader of the free world for a second term.

Compare Biden’s numbers with Trump on those descriptors and it’s a flip, as they say. For Trump, only 1 percent say he’s “old, outdated, and elderly.”

I’d call him morbidly obese, but that wasn’t an option. And only 3 percent say he’s “slow, confused, bumbling.”

But he’s 4x  worse than Biden with 8 percent calling Trump a “liar, dishonest, and untrustworthy.”

And 15 percent say Trump is “corrupt, criminal, and crooked.” That’s more than double what Biden got.

So you want the lying crook or the honest older fellow? Of course, we may have to put an asterisk next to  Filipinos loyal to Marcos and Duterte with a high degree of tolerance for lying and corruption.

The AP poll is a pretty stark contrast, but can anyone honestly say they prefer a crook in the White House with a mugshot?

I doubt if that was MLK’s dream for our country 60 years ago this week.

NOTE:

While Trump was getting processed in Georgia, and while the MLK march was remembered in DC, I was in New York exercising my First Amendment right in Ishmael Reed’s “The Conductor,” playing a conservative commentator. That’s acting! The play is a commentary on the current state of race in America and the fight over education. See how Indian Americans and Asian Americans play a role. It runs from Aug. 24 to Sept. 10, Thursday through Saturday at 8pm, Sunday matinees at 3pm at Theater for the New City, 155 1st Ave, NYC.

Tickets here: https://theaterforthenewcity.net/shows/the-conductor-august-2023/

PLUS: “Here Lies Love”? No, hear lies truth!  While in New York, I’m doing my own Emil Amok, Lost NPR Host: A Phool’s History of American Filipinos.” Two shows only on Sept. 6 at 7pm, and Sept. 14 at 9:30pm at Under St. Marks Theater, 94 St. Marks Place, at 1st Ave. NYC.

Come see the updated iteration in person if you’re in New York.

The show is also being streamed live so you can see it on your phone or computer from the comfort of your banig wherever you are. Hawaii. Philippines. Daly City.

Tickets here:  https://www.frigid.nyc/event/6897:499/

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

MORE STORIES
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
TAGS: Donald Trump, US politics
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.
Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.




We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.