Right Opinion

Donald, Duck!

Burt Prelutsky · May 20, 2017

Because I have become such a fan of President Trump, it may have slipped your collective memory that I opposed his nomination. By the time he beat off all the other contenders, my reason for supporting him had more to do with his opponent, Mrs. Clinton, than it did with Trump.

In time, however, he won me over. It wasn’t just that he kept those promises he could, such as appointing Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, cutting job-killing regulations, boosting morale for the police and the military, and neutering the EPA. I just found myself liking him as a person. He had a humorous, slightly goofy, personality I found ingratiating. Unlike every other president, he didn’t carry on as if he took himself too seriously, as if he had been elected God.

In short, I could see why nearly every political leader he has met with seems to go away with more positive feelings about him, and therefore about America, than when he arrived.

In fact, that is one of the more obvious differences between him and his predecessor. Barack Obama made no secret of the fact that he felt nothing but contempt for Bibi Netanyahu, but he was such a cool, calculating, character, far more invested in himself than in the nation, that I never believed that any of the foreign leaders went home after a state meeting thinking they had a friend and ally in the White House.

But even with Donald Trump at the helm, I have precious little hope for America’s future. The nation is more divided now than it was at the time of the Civil War. Back then, the major division involved slavery, and the divide was pretty much along geographical lines.

Today, the nation is divided in every state, and the multitude of differences include things like same-sex marriage, the Second Amendment, transgender bathrooms, the rights of illegal aliens, capital punishment, taxes, health care, socialism versus capitalism, cops versus Black Lives Matter, sanctuary cities and states, the Wall, etc. People have even come to blows over something as stupid as climate change.

The basic problem is that the Democrats refuse to agree with the Republicans about anything, lest their base deserts them, and the Republicans can’t even agree with each other. That’s because the GOP includes people like Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski, who are Democrats in everything except party affiliation, as well as those like Ted Cruz and Mike Lee, who would prefer to run as members of the Conservative Party, except there isn’t such a thing.

Like a married couple who hate each other, but because of their religion or the kids, can’t divorce, Republicans can’t split up because neither faction would then have enough support to defeat Democrats in an election.

One of the many things blamed on the Trump presidency is that it opened the floodgates to hate crimes. But inasmuch as most of the hate has been directed at Trump and those of us who support him, whether it’s on college campuses or the streets, it’s worse than a lie, it’s an organized propaganda campaign, waged by left-wing pundits and politicians, and financed by George Soros.

The level of hate in America has certainly soared over the past several months, but nearly all of it that has been laid at the feet of the alt-right, as the alt-left likes to label us, has consisted of clumsily-concocted hoaxes.

In fact, if you type in Hate Crime Hoaxes, you will find hundreds of examples where blacks and Muslims, in particular, have committed self-inflicted injuries and acts of vandalism, in the hopes that the very obliging media will tar Trump and his allies.

These hoaxes are a glaring example of what the President quite properly labels fake news.

As a public service, I am continuing to share the list of fun historical facts that answer a series of questions beginning with Why.

Why, for instance, do ships and aircraft use “mayday” as their call for assistance?

You can blame or credit the French. The word “m'aidez” means “help me.” and is pronounced “mayday,” although any Frenchman worth his vichyssoise would pretend not to understand the word if spoken by a non-Frenchman.

Why do X’s at the end of a letter signify kisses?

In the Middle Ages, when many people were unable to read or write, documents were often signed using an X. Kissing the X represented an oath to fulfill those obligations specified in the document. The X and the kiss eventually became synonymous.

Why is shifting responsibility to someone else calling passing the buck?

In card games, it was once customary to pass along an item, called a buck, from player to player to indicate whose turn it was to deal. If a player did not wish to assume the responsibility of dealing, he would ‘pass the buck’ to the next player.

Why is someone who is feeling great said to be on cloud nine?

Types of clouds are numbered according to the altitudes they attain. With nine being the highest, it figures that those floating on it are far beyond worldly cares, unless, like yours truly, they happen to suffer from acrophobia. How bad is it, you ask? I have always felt that if I were any taller, I’d be afraid to stand up.

Although I have written eight books, all of them delightful and none of them too long, I have never had a national best seller. It seems that if you don’t host a radio or TV show or have easy access to other people’s shows, it is difficult to garner sufficient attention to break out of the crowd.

I did make what I thought was an inspired effort to break through back in 2005. That was the year that the Prince of Wales (Charles to his friends) married Mrs. Parker Bowles (Camilla to her friends, an obscenity to Queen Elizabeth).

Knowing they would be going on a honeymoon, I decided to send the royal couple a copy of my new book, hoping that the paparazzi would photograph one or the other of them reading it on the beach in Bermuda of wherever they wound up.

It never happened, but I did wind up with a nice letter from the Prince’s secretary, Mrs. Claudia Holloway. On stationery reading Clarence House, London SW1A 1BA, dated 7th March, 2005, it reads: “Dear Mr. Prelutsky, The Prince of Wales and Mrs. Parker Bowles have asked me to thank you for the wedding gift you so kindly sent them.

"His Royal Highness and Mrs. Parker Bowles are most grateful to you for taking the trouble to send them a copy of your book "Conservatives Are from Mars (Liberals Are from San Francisco)”. It really was most thoughtful of you and they have asked me to send you their warmest thanks and best wishes.“

I’m glad they appreciated the thought, but if I had known they weren’t going to help publicize it, I would probably have sent them the toaster oven I had my eye on.

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