Donald Trump

My Maniacal Rant, Chapter Three, Part Two

The rhetorical gymnastics being played right now are astonishing. This should be pretty easy for all of us to figure out, if we’ve been paying attention to Trump.

He’s doing exactly what he said he was going to do.

He made a big deal during the campaign about needing to ban Muslims, specifically, to the point of reading his policy in Presidential style during the campaign. Rudy Giuliani admits it’s a legal trick to disguise it so this Muslim ban will muster its way through the courts successfully. Sean Spicer said today it’s not even a travel ban, just extreme vetting. Now Trump can tell his Christian supporters, who can’t wait to start a war with Muslims, that he got his ban, while the media fights with Trump about using the term “ban.”

During the campaign, Trump also doubled-down on the idea that the Central Park Five were guilty, even though extreme vetting proved to be horribly, horribly incorrect in that tragic case. Police officers extremely-vetted five random kids into prison sentences for crimes they didn’t commit…and Trump still thinks they’re guilty because extreme vetting has to work.

Trump still believes in torture, although he’ll “defer” to the specialists! I’m assuming that he’s going to give the thumbs-up to torture behind closed doors and attempt to keep the reporters in the dark about it…at least until he feels safe enough to wheel one of his unlucky nay-sayers onto a television stage, strapped immotile, upside-down to a flatboard, ready to demonstrate to America how water-boarding is effective and keeps America safe!

He wants us to think Obama’s to blame because our last President designated these seven countries for extra scrutiny with visas and green cards, but we all know Obama would never have approved of this executive order. It’s also okay for Trump to do this because Obama did it himself to Iraq!…even though, there was a terror attack on a military recruitment station in Kentucky that called for the action. Trump cannot point to any such recent terror attack. In fact, every terror attack used to defend this executive order has been performed by terrorists NOT from any of the seven countries on the list! Trump’s going to have to stand up on his own two feet, and stop pointing to Obama for the mistakes Trump makes.

Trump wants us to believe that he’s protecting us by detaining members of the seven countries and putting them under the hot spotlight of good, old-American gestapo police-questioning in order to find the bad guys…like some God-awful buddy-cop movie. And why not? It seems like most Americans think that’s how America’s supposed to be: like in the movies! You know, where all the Muslims are trying to kill America’s white people! Ah, I remember the good old days when it was the Ruskies trying to kill America’s white people in the movies.

A lot of Americans are stupid enough to cheer him on because he’s fulfilling campaign promises that will come back to bite them in the ass. We are paying for the wall, he did start a trade war with a bordering country, and Steve Bannon will be in charge of the military! In fact, I’m being kind. It’ll be ass-rending, not just a little bite.

There’s also a lot of Americans, like me, that are just as stupid. I stupidly continue to try to make logical sense out of Trump’s agenda, when he told us exactly what he’s going to do for the last year and more: He’s going to take over this country and fix it in his image.

I am most chilled because he did say he was going to kill family members of the terrorists, and that’s one of the first things he did in Yemen with Seal Team Six (as if he wanted to mimic Obama’s surprise attack of Osama bin Laden). An eight-year-old girl, daughter of a terrorist, shot and killed ten days into Trump’s presidency.  One of our Seals was killed too.

There are 5,000+ soldiers in Iraq right now, partnered with the people affected by this ban. I doubt they even care about the whole “religious test” as much as they care about all the times Trump is caught saying we should have taken all the oil, and who knows, maybe there’ll be another chance to do it right!

Trump’s doing everything he said he would do, so I am most scared for my country’s soldiers right now, stationed in Iraq.

Mr. Trump, you are endangering lives, and you can protest about protecting us all you want. You are endangering people. Get it in your head, Mr. Trump. You don’t know more than the generals.

This country–indeed, this world–is not your play-toy, Mr. Trump. If you’re looking to start a war and are testing the waters to see who you can trust before you go full-on military state with America, then, sir, you are going to start losing your legitimacy quickly with every American. You already lost it with me, but I promise you this, when Americans start dying, sir, we, as Americans, do not fall back in line. Maybe the Democrats in Congress are looking to fall back into line so quickly, but my brand of American does no such thing. We fight when we need to, and there are plenty of Americans who did not vote on November 8th that would like to contribute to the conversation at this moment.

Mr. Trump, slow it down, and start listening to the people, or we will revolt…and I will be happy to be a part of it.

You don’t scare me, Mr. Trump. I look forward to the eventual insulting tweet; in fact, here, let me write it for you:

This is the problem with America: mouthy teachers who should be doing what they’re told. The Maniacal Professor’s a fool. Sad. Maybe he should be waterboarded.

Scott C. Guffey, M.A.


A Simple Proposal To Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump To Solve the Military Compensatory Bonus “Problem”

Okay, we have a ridiculous problem about which BOTH political parties agree: Military soldiers were paid bonuses to extend their tours of duty, and our government is trying to renege because of policy error and qualification language. We should all agree that this is mind-bogglingly stupid! If you’re a soldier who served in Iraq or Afghanistan, and you agreed to go back and do extra service because of 10 to 20 thousand dollar bonuses (which is not a lot of money…they went back to serve our people’s interests in war zones, people!), then we are obligated to pay them their due, not repossess it.

So, here’s the simple proposal: the government is looking to collect about $20 million from veterans who earned their paychecks, so how about Hillary and Trump take $10 million each from their campaign budgets and submit it to the government, instead of purchasing any more ad-time for ridiculous, inflammatory commercials in these last two weeks of the election. They both have that much cash in hand, and frankly, America is sick of these stupid commercials by now. They didn’t work for Mitt Romney in 2012, and they certainly didn’t work for Jeb Bush in this election cycle. Perhaps, the two candidates might work together to solve an American problem.

Maybe it can be a high point between the candidates in this toxic election cycle.

Scott C. Guffey, M.A.

My Maniacal Rant, Chapter Two, Part Eight

White noise: According to, it is also called white sound, a steady, unvarying sound, used to mask or obliterate unwanted sounds…

White noise: This was the sound of Donald Trump’s voice for me after he deflected his advocacy of sexual assault by going full-Fox-News and dismissing it as just locker-room banter. I swear I saw a little Sean Hannity, whispering in his ear about how to make the so-very deplorable become so-very digestible for the Republican Base. Apparently, the American People should continue to let men tell them not to worry about guy-talk, or how it may lead to sexual assault…or just how it’s plain indecent and SHOULD NOT be dismissed as “locker-room talk.” Boys will be boys, so let’s move on… Trump told Anderson Cooper that the Clinton News Network anchor hadn’t heard properly what Trump said, and by extension, Trump told the American People that we didn’t hear him right either. His voice started sounding like the adults in the Peanuts world right off the bat, when Trump successfully deflected the most horrific recording released to the public of a Presidential candidate ever…The drone in my ears, I think, is my brain defending my soul from Trump’s corruptible white sound.

White noise: The barely audible cheer heard across the country as White America regained their champion after Hilary Clinton dropped the ball last night…

Scott C. Guffey, M.A.

My Maniacal Rant, Chapter Two, Part Five

Please feel free to read the following essay using the internal literary-reading voice of Kevin Spacey’s House of Cards character, Francis Underwood, yet make no mistake that it is the voice of the Maniacal Professor:

I came into the Vice-Presidential Debate hoping Tim Kaine would tear Mike Pence a new one…

…I came out of the Vice-Presidential Debate’s aftermath so very sullen, because Pence had actually gained my respect, despite his transparently-false denials…and I carry a grudge against my governor, for which I still feel justified because of his shilling for Trump and his abuse of Indiana’s educational system, but I just cannot deny that I share his rhetorical persona…

…I begrudgingly admit I find Mike Pence to be likable…

…because he’s so very good at deflecting with the good-natured Hoosier personality of being neighborly…respectfully disagreeing…sharing your experience…attempting to relate…using a NASCAR or hunting analogy every now and then…just trying to be friendly while trying to explain white Christian ethics to all the brown and black people that have shown up so suddenly in the metropolitan areas of Republican Red-and-White-Yet-Not-Necessarily-Accepting-Of-Blue Indiana…

…but Mike Pence is still shilling to Donald Trump, simply so he can run for President in 2020 after Hillary Clinton is elected to the office on November 8th of this year…fingers crossed…still not sure because I check my Facebook feed WAY too eff-ing often during these last thirty days of this election cycle.

My thesis: I try to be a good-natured Hoosier, but it’s damn hard to do so when more than half of Indiana is voting for Trump. The way I carry out this ideology is easy enough, because I do enjoy and practice the following Hoosier ethics:

  1. Pay your fair share
  2. Live within your means
  3. Be kind to your neighbor

Trump does not follow these three components. Mike Pence does; therefore, I think Mike Pence is a better candidate for President.

I do not enjoy showing up to the polling booth to vote for Hillary Clinton, ESPECIALLY after Bill Clinton has gone bat-shit crazy and seriously, openly criticized Barack Obama’s legacy. He is not helping his wife’s cause, unless he figures he is driving every woman voter her way by matching Trump’s misogyny…

…at any rate, I will be voting for Hillary Clinton, and I hope fellow Hoosiers and Americans realize that Clinton shares the aforementioned three values more than Donald Trump. She is not exactly the embodiment of the three values, but it is undeniable that Donald Trump is the complete antithesis of these three moralistic values;

I admit publicly that I am voting against Donald Trump.

This is a difficult admission because I enjoy voting for a candidate; I do not enjoy voting against a candidate…

…but that is our reality in 2016.

I also admit that I will probably consider voting for Mike Pence if Hillary Clinton does not work out after four years.

I invite those Americans who understand that I am, in fact, a shill because of this invitation, just like I have accused Mike Pence of being for Trump.

I admit I am a shill…

…because Trump is not worthy of a vote for those of us who share a new set of conservative Christian values, a set of American values that involve fairness, frugality, and love, not discrimination, avarice, and fear.

Trump just isn’t the guy. Listen to what he says. Why do so many people have to work so very hard to figure out what he’s saying and defend what he’s saying?

Just listen to what he says. It’s a simple enough lesson from teaching rhetorical analysis: What you say betrays your character.

I am shilling to my friends and family and fellow Americans, from within the Northwest Region of Indiana, as a former Bears fan who wears an Aaron Rodgers jersey during NFL Sundays in 2016…

…Please don’t vote for Donald Trump. Hillary Clinton is not that bad.

Please and amen.

Scott C. Guffey, M. A.

My Maniacal Rant, Chapter Two, Part Four

Wow. Let’s step off this wild 24-hour roller coaster ride. Let’s call it post-debate epiphany…or a poison-letting recovery…or a political punch-to-the-nuts…I don’t know anymore…this political cycle has become so very sobering, after watching Trump confirm his idiocy, while Clinton does her best to lobby to a country that seems to have already given up on her, no matter what she says in these debates.

Clinton tries her best to present a legitimate case to the country, while Trump gets away with tossing these entertaining word salads at us. Mind you, we need to keep trying to make sense of the word salad, and it’s on us to stop trying to translate what Trump says, yet he keeps saying things that are hard to understand!

Let’s just accept Trump’s majesty based on his say-so…

Utter bullshit.

His rhetoric is in fact pure bullshit, and it seemed to work well in the first segment of the debate. He started strong with his tone and demeanor, but he still provided no substance. He merely screamed about jobs leaving the country, repeated it several times, and then said lower taxes for job creators like him would solve everything.

That was his high point.

After that, he repeated that his tax returns were not America’s business, while promoting himself as a sound American entrepreneur—(not a politician!!!…as I keep hearing ad nauseum from everybody…he’s absolutely a politician now…let’s move on, please…at least until he proves he’s actually a sound American entrepreneur).

He’s all about racial-profiling, as he wants to further his “protection” of the people with a police state, in which police officers can stop-and-frisk whomever the fuck they want. Let’s not forget about the 2 million doors that will be kicked in within hours of Trump’s inauguration.

He’s law and order…for white people.

White people better realize that once doors start getting kicked in and people start getting stopped by police regularly cuz they look funny…realize that white Americans are losing their civil rights simultaneously.

No bullshit.

Trump lost me frequently when he started telling me how his young son was so amazing with computers when asked about cyber-security, followed by taking all of Libya’s oil now…and NATO needs to pay up…and he started NATO’s new focus group on terrorism…and Sean Hannity can confirm he was against the Iraqi war…and blowing Iran’s boat of soldiers out of the water would not start an international incident…and he has better judgment cuz he says so…along with the best…temperament…EVAH!…

To her detriment, Clinton believes global warming exists and is very important, yet Trump denies he’s a global-warming denier.

Rosie O’Donnell deserves to be lambasted because Tom Selleck of the NRA called her stupid when she tried to talk about guns with him. No one can deny that Rosie’s got it coming, according to Trump.

Russia’s our friend, and Putin has the best first-use nuclear policy.

China should solve the problem of North Korea, and perhaps we should pull our positions from South Korea’s northernmost border…cuz America can start a lucrative protection racket worldwide!

Trump didn’t criticize Hillary’s looks, just her stamina…which is perhaps the most incredible thing Trump said since he obviously did not have the stamina to stand up to Hillary Clinton on the national stage for ninety minutes…

…otherwise he wouldn’t be whining about the commercials. The commercials that are largely compilations of Trump’s audio-recorded idiotic rhetoric.

Trump says that the commercials are unfair; otherwise, he might be forced to bring up Bill Clinton’s infidelity because Hillary Clinton keeps hammering him on WHAT HE HAS FUCKING SAID!!!

He’s a joke, charlatan, thin-skinned, clownish, soap-box-barking, jerkiest, yadda, yadda, yadda…

He’s not Citizen Kane, and he needs to stop play-acting that role upon America’s most prominent stage.

Donald Trump simply cannot handle this job.

My lone criticism of Hillary Clinton is she should have brought up the fact that Trump pulled out a full-page ad in a New York paper—as a journalist, mind you—asking for the death penalty for five young innocent black boys who were coerced into confession by a fraudulent New York City Police Department, when he brought up the “super-predator” comment that she still needs to apologize for.

Otherwise, she’s more qualified than her competitor.

Scott C. Guffey, M.A.


My Maniacal Rant, Chapter Two, Part Three

Donald Trump Jr. made a senseless analogy using Skittles, suggesting that 3 candies out of an entire bowl would poison the pool. This was published and owned by the Trump/Pence campaign, despite the governor of Indiana’s protests to the contrary (..and Pence is truly a shill to Trump, if America needed no more perfect example of the concept of shill, prior to Pence’s candidacy as Trump’s right-hand man and nauseator-in-chief…).

At any rate, allow me to make my own analogy, since Trump’s progeny—and Trump himself—have licensed us smaller people, by making their own fallacious arguments integral to the American conversation…

We have a choice between two meals:

America can eat the stale meat sandwich. It’s not too old to eat, but the bread’s a little crusty, the lettuce is withered, and the meat’s probably past the expiration date. We don’t want to eat it, but dammit, we need to eat something, despite the smell and taste of every vote…sorry, I meant bite…

The other meal is a big heaping, steaming pile of shit, produced by a caveman-impulsed, entitled-simian millionaire who actually thinks he’s king of the greatest clan-slash-cult-of-the-entire-world!!!…

…a clan that is actually a country, one that I thought valued a little intellectualism in its leadership.

We can only eat one of these meals.

Please let it not be the shit sandwich.

Scott C. Guffey, M. A.

My Maniacal Rant, Chapter Two, Part Two

I am begrudgingly with her…but God-damn fuckin’ hell, she’s losing this thing!

Sorry, I do have an inner-hillbilly.

On second thought, no apologies for growing up within the hillbilly culture; J.D.Vance’s memoir convinced me that the culture needs to be defined more clearly to understand this year’s political situation.

This political forum last Wednesday night concerning the nature of the Commander-in-Chief was especially depressing for those of us paying attention to the American Apocalypse.

Both of our Presidential candidates are so very flawed.

Hillary Clinton cannot give a satisfactory answer about the server she decided to put into her home. She got defensive and showed how hard it will be for her to defend herself against Donald Trump in the first debate. She needs to stop elaborating on the procedure of Secretary of State and simply explain how she should not have had a personal server placed within her home. It’s as simple as that, yet she continues to give convoluted justification of why she should have made that decision…to be clear, to allow a tech nerd to establish a potential breach of national security because she wanted an easier way to work from home. She’s apologized for this mistake, yet she refuses to really acknowledge it within her rhetoric.

Maybe if she did that last night, we might spend more time within the national conversation about Aleppo in Syria…so the third-party candidate for Prez might have heard about this serious concern of global atrocity.

I’m not saying Hillary is disqualified for her e-mail nonsense. I’m saying this argument should have been taken care of long ago…YET, she still has to spend nearly fifteen minutes of a half-hour forum on the damn e-mails when it should be fairly brief after a couple of years of it. Let’s move on, Hillary. Stop getting defensive if you want America to accept your apology…

…and stop making absolutist statements. It’s what got Obama in trouble with the Red-line stance in Syria. There are approximately 5,000 troops in Iraq as of September 7th, 2016.  If ISIS is to be stopped, then you cannot make a blanket statement about soldiers  appearing in potential wars. Perhaps, necessary wars.

I am a pacifist. I will not take a life with my own hands; however, I understand the necessity of war. I do not possess the desire to enter war, as so many Americans want to do against ISIS, which Trump inflames to the point of giving allegiance to Russia, and Syria by proxy. I’m an American that understands war and wants to shout back at American society, to discourage the call to enter more conflicts where Americans die. We do not need to always be in a war.

We need to stop this silly belief…as a country. Every single time we “honor” our troops with prefaced statements and pompous ceremony INSTEAD of facing the mistakes we make because of our ginned-up fear of brown-skinned terrorists…every single time we do this, the sentiment becomes spurious and something detrimental, contributing to the continued lack of a genuine American conscience, from people that are just glad there are others more willing to face red-hot, arm-length tracers and constant, earth-shattering concussion.

This is the point of the narrative where I shout out loudly, rowdily, and so-very-intoxicatedly about how some Americans think Trump is so much better than Clinton.

Trump-a-lump-a-oh-so-atrocious disparaged America, and the Orange Charlatan insisted Vladmir Putin was a better “leader” than the eight-year-two-term-President-of-the-United-States-of-America, Barack Obama…and he did this in the presence of veterans of our most recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan!

TRUMP: Sorry troops! You’ve been working under a soft leader who is not willing to oppress his people like Vladmir Putin has so skillfully done in Russia. Once America elects me, the Greatest Businessman on the Planet, you soldiers can start taking orders from some real military leaders, since all of the generals have been turned to rubble by Obama’s incompetency…

Trump can go to fucking hell. He’s a brazen asshole, a carnival barker, and a dangerous con-man. He’s a disgrace to this country, and it’s deflating to see so many of my fellow-countrymen aligning themselves behind him under the Republican banner.

He only pays lip-service to the veterans and their families and the Republican base…

He has continued to rely on his stupid insistence of elevating numbers with EVERYTHING in his rhetoric. This time, he challenged a young female veteran, Rachel Fredericks, who asked a serious question about suicides in the present military culture:

TRUMP: It was actually twenty-two deaths a day when veterans of these recent wars commit suicide because of the atrocities they have observed…not twenty because that’s not high enough a number to convince you, the American people, that I am all about servicing the veterans and their families…

…Not twenty as the stats state. Trump always knows better. The stupid son-of-a-bitch.

Trump always thinks the way to pay attention to argumentative issues is to inflate them.

He also said he’s made sacrifices by giving jobs to people or money to veterans. He was asked a question about what he had sacrificed after Khizr Khan excoriated Trump at the DNC convention. His answer was that he had indeed sacrificed…in his mind, just as the Khan family had sacrificed, even though the people to whom Trump gave jobs probably didn’t deserve them, and oftentimes, the check’s in the mail for the charities (wink, wink…ha, ha…you’re fired).

He doesn’t understand what a military family’s sacrifice means to the citizens of America, and he cannot take back that claim about understanding sacrifice…not for this author. It’s just stinkin’ impossible. He’s a fucking asshole forever, as far as I am concerned.

Just to let my readers know what I really think.

Trump insists he’s smarter than everybody who’s in the room, but he could not specify a satisfactory answer for a simple question about his own personal research.

He depends on other people…even though he’s smarter than other people…

He’s a businessman. He gets people who can conduct business. Instead of him. The problem is the rubble-Generals that achieved rank under Obama…or before Obama…all we know is that after Obama, Trump will “fix” it…even if he obviously doesn’t understand how the military actually operates as far as hierarchy or earned service is concerned…or even the basic difference between enlisted personnel versus college-educated officers, I imagine…this forum was supposed to be Trump’s strength, and he bungled the whole affair so very transparently…

..yet America still might elect him President…

…Trump’s biggest misstep may have been when he admitted all we needed to do this past decade was to take all of Iraq’s oil.

That would have stopped all of the mayhem. If we had only gathered the spoils as victor. Even though there were no victors…

…Phil Klay asked an intelligent question, and Trump did not provide an intelligent answer.

He has no clue. How did he even get this close?

He also doubled-down on the notion that women cannot properly serve in the military, since men cannot help their cave-man impulses…

…why shouldn’t he? His own cave-man impulses have led him to the brink of the Presidency, the next leader of the Free World…

…a Free World that will become the Free-Market Anarchistic Police States of America on Day One!

Trump has already damaged this country. Let’s try to keep the blaze contained, so it doesn’t become America’s pyre.

I would like to stop thinking about Trump,  writing about Trump , loathing Trump…but I love my country too damn much…and the brother that gave his life for the Iraqi war…I love him more…

…Writing is simultaneously a sickness and a salve. I try to write with intensity every time I sit down to create an essay. I’m usually successful ten percent of the time, but hell, I’m going to keep trying. It’s usually when my manic-depression overcomes me. I make no apologies. Writing down my thoughts is often the only way to make it to tomorrow.

Scott C. Guffey, M.A.

Donald Trump: A Chicagoan’s Take

Donald Trump built a big ol’ phallic symbol in the middle of Chicago, and he wants to slap his name on it in big, shiny letters, like he does with all the constructed temples glorifying his simplistic self in major cities. Several Chicagoans, including Mayor Rahm Emmanuel, have made a stink about it, and Trump decided to write a self-glorifying letter, showing the public how much he loves himself and trying to persuade everybody that he deserves to put his name on whatever the hell he owns.

Having lived in and about Chicago my entire life, I can honestly say I could care less about the Trump sign on the Trump Tower (for about a week, that is). I figured, once I caught wind of his puffed up sign, that it was to be expected. His track record shows that he had the sign in mind probably about five seconds after he purchased the old Sun-Times property with plans for his tower. My way of thinking goes: if it’s his property and he has the means, then so be it. Build a sign. Stroke your own ego. I don’t mind tossing a middle finger at a giant sign every time I encounter it to declare my own distaste for Trump’s convoluted politics and opinions.

Very recently, I changed my mind. Let’s get rid of the sign right now, Chicago. In fact, let’s pass a law to keep Trump the hell out of our city.

His little letter to Chicagoans didn’t really rile me that much, even though I doubt any Chicagoans were sympathetic to his words. It’s the letter he recently wrote to New Yorkers that has changed my mind about Trump’s name being prominently displayed in downtown Chicago. I don’t want his name lighting up my city. Chicago doesn’t need to glorify a racist’s name by holding it up on its broad shoulders.

I’m sure that people will become offended because I call Trump a racist, but it’s tough to convince me he’s not after having the gall to write an editorial about how he’s offended at the financial expenditure to five young black men who had their lives ruined wrongfully. I might be convinced that his campaigning against Barack Obama is fueled by his devotion to conservatism, but Trump is selling a shoddy bridge if he’s trying to convince that his years-long intentions against the Central Park Five isn’t based on race. I’d be willing to forgive his role in the Central Park Five’s imprisonment—his unbelievably-flawed editorial calling for the death penalty for the offenders is re-printed with his current letter to the N.Y. Daily News—if he showed any consideration for the exoneration of those five black men, but he remains stoically stupid about it. The courts deemed that the five youths were innocent, using DNA evidence and a confession. Donald Trump bemoans the loss of money over the lost years of those boys’ lives. I have no sympathy for Trump’s opinions in this matter.

I’ve seen Kenneth Burns’ stunning documentary. I remember the national fervor against those five young black boys in 1989. Amy Davidson wrote an article for the New Yorker that sums up the obvious about Trump. It’s a free country, as Donald Trump revels in reminding us. I believe he’s a racist piece of crap, and I can write my opinion freely, as he seems to think it’s his right to declare his own flawed opinions in national newspapers so damn frequently. I also believe that having millions of dollars does not make one an intellectual, for which Donald Trump is the ideal case study.

Trump obviously is not a big believer in the word “reparations.” Like many, he probably thinks it’s a bad word. I would suggest Trump reads a true intellectual’s case about reparations before he rebukes the concept as if it is some insult, especially for the Central Park Five, for whom reparations are decidedly due, as many New Yorkers and Chicagoans might agree.

There’s little chance that the Trump sign will be taken down off the Trump Tower in Chicago. Even if Trump is a racist, he’ll still get his way (in a city which embarrassingly has a history of segregation, as detailed by Ta-Nehisi Coates). I’ll be sure to stick my middle finger up loud and proud every single time I pass by that gaudy sign.

{As karmic balance for Chicago’s fortunes, George Lucas decided to build the Star Wars Museum in our city. Here’s hoping Donald Trump has nothing to do with the property, lest the marquee read “Trump presents the Star Wars Museum” with an oversized TRUMP overshadowing the beloved Star Wars logo.

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Scott C. Guffey
P.O. Box 53
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Donald Sterling: A Small Man

The Los Angeles Clippers play their fifth playoff game against the Golden State Warriors tonight. The series had been a good one, up to the third game. These teams played each other tough, as they did during the regular season, and there’s been some good playoff basketball to watch. The first game went the Warriors way, as Blake Griffin got into foul trouble and Chris Paul wasn’t hitting his shots at the end. The second game went the Clippers way, as Griffin dominated the post, once he realized he needed to stay on the court to take advantage of his interior skills. The Clippers eked out a win in the third game when the Warriors charged in the fourth quarter. Great, satisfying NBA playoff basketball.

The fourth game was ruined by the spectre of Clippers owner Donald Sterling’s racist comments. The Clippers were understandably deflated. The entire NBA league had been rattled. Our society is currently incensed. Race relations have been moved back a few decades by a cantankerous old man who seems to fancy himself a modern-era slave-benefactor in the mold of Cliven Bundy’s white ideals for the black community.

It has been suggested that the Clippers should not have played the fourth game. This might have been the best thing for the players. Some fans might not have appreciated it if the Clippers had not played, but many would have understood that mental acuity and physical performance go hand-in-hand in sports. Your mind must be sharp in order to play effectively. For the sake of the integrity of the game, it would have been understood by this fan if the Clippers decided not to play…I feel the Warriors might have joined them in a symbolic boycott. League executives would not have appreciated it, but they would run the risk of alienating a majority of their fan base, if they denounced the players for a boycott instead of Sterling for his comments.

What confounds me a bit is how some sports reporters reacted to the Clippers’ show of unity. The players wore their warm-up jerseys inside-out, hiding Sterling’s ownership brand. Some indicated that this was inappropriate, and the Clippers should wait until afterward to express their indignity. The thinking goes that the Clippers should focus on the game and worry about politicizing another time. Some suggested that the Clippers shouldn’t show that Sterling was on their mind because it was a sign of weakness, and they lost game four because their minds were more on how to make a statement than winning the game.

That’s a load of horse crap. Of course their minds were on Sterling’s comments, but they weren’t obsessing over how to express indignation. They wore their warm-up jerseys inside-out, and they played the game despite the mental burden they had forced upon them. Their minds were going to be on Sterling’s comments regardless of a show of protest, just like the rest of the free world is focusing on Donald Sterling presently. They had the extraordinary burden, as a team, of performing under a scathing spotlight, attempting to win for each other, while not representing a revealed bigot. I applaud the Clippers for displaying their opposition to Sterling through symbolic gesture. It’s just piling on the deflated to disallow them an opportunity to express themselves jointly; it is borderline repugnant to suggest they lost the game because of their demonstration.

This is where we overreact as a society. Americans are always quick to point the hot finger of blame when scandal presents itself. Donald Trump, another rich entrepreneur who might soon own the NFL Buffalo Bills, pointed the finger at Sterling’s girlfriend. Some, myself included, point the finger at former NBA commissioner David Stern for allowing Sterling to operate while aware of his debauched character (Please explain to us again, Mr. Stern, how Chris Paul ended up in a Clippers uniform). It has even been suggested that we are all to blame because we grow resentful about recorded phone calls instead of discriminatory real-estate practices.

Donald Sterling should be blamed entirely here. It is his fault for being a racist. Whether the conversation was private or not, Sterling’s character is obvious from his rhetoric. He deserves the lion’s share of consequence because his beliefs have been exposed. At 80 years old, he has had plenty of time to reconsider his racism, and he stuck with a hateful ideology, most likely for eight decades. Let’s keep that red-hot focus on the appropriate target, please.

It’s obvious that Donald Sterling will not lose in this situation. He sits on a pile of wealth, and he stands to gain even more, if he is forced to sell the franchise. Adam Silver, the new commissioner of the NBA, will hold a press conference today to discuss the consequences for Donald Sterling. Most likely, he will be suspended and/or fined. At best, Sterling’s ownership rights will be removed (I’m not sure consensus on this will be reached by the other 29 owners).

The only consequence that matters will be social ostracization. He has been exposed, and the nation is aware of his character. An apology, like the one given last year by Philadelphia Eagles WR Riley Cooper, will not suffice. The situations are different: Cooper shouted an excited utterance which was recorded, to which his apology was contrite and his actions were representative of humility, while Sterling laid down an entire manifesto of racism that would be difficult to renege without betraying his dishonesty. Sterling cannot apologize without stating unequivocally that he is wrong to think and believe in such a manner. I assume a man like Sterling will remain smugly complacent in his own world view, and that might be the biggest tragedy of all. Sterling might die a miserable racist on a big pile of money…and that might be the only satisfaction we receive collectively…

…and that is what we should concern ourselves with tonight. There are calls to boycott tonight’s game. Fans in L.A. might not attend the game. Viewers might deflate the ratings by turning the channel. If Adam Silver’s press conference does not satisfy the demands of the public, the players just might boycott tonight’s playoff game.

I hope the Clippers and Warriors play tonight. I hope fans pack the house to support the Clippers. I anticipate tonight’s game might actually increase the viewer ratings. I hope that the Clippers can play through this hardship. I hope that both teams play to their potential and give fans a competitive game. Just as a one million dollar fine would mean little to the wealthy Donald Sterling, a boycott against his franchise will probably mean less to this racist mogul. It is my hope that Donald Sterling is not the focus tonight. I hope that the players can accept adversity and display courage in the same vein that Jackie Robinson once did daily in a Dodgers uniform. I hope that the public can celebrate the black players on the floor as representatives of a great and diverse American game. I hope that the words of a very small man do not spoil the camaraderie and festivity of our American ideals and tradition, represented by these treasured NBA players, no matter the color of their skin.

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