Here we are, the morning after the night before, after the election before, after the campaign trail before. We saw it coming. More than anyone ever did, we saw it coming. But no amount of Robert DeNiro or Bryan Cranston warning us helped us to put a stop to it. No amount of celebrity deaths or high profile fuck ups gave us a clue. You know how when you get tooth ache it starts to hurt a little, then it fades, then it comes back with a vengeance, then fades, until eventually you are living in a perpetual state of agony? No? Well done you for not getting toothache then, because trust me, that is some of the worst pain there is. Because when things start going wrong like that, you’re supposed to take action. Something to prevent the inevitable explosion (my gum exploded once, so that is an accurate description), you’re supposed to intervene before it becomes a living nightmare.
Nobody did. One man tried to, very unsuccessfully, assassinate Trump on the campaign trail. A British man at that, which just goes to show that if we’d had looser gun restrictions in this country, then perhaps he would have been able to get it right, but I’m not going to sit here and seriously advocate arming the UK because holy shit, we’d all be dead within a week if we did. If it had been an American, however, who had tried to kill him, it might have worked, they’ve had practice. They know how to take down a target at a busy rally. I’m sure that “how to shoot politicians” is an integral part of their primary education, each history class contains a slow motion re-enactment and a step by step instructional guide. Perhaps target practice will replace basic spelling under Trump’s regime, as we all know an educated public is harder to manipulate. This would also give the authorities more chance to shoot and kill innocents. A herd of police could be ambling past a school shooting range (formerly a science lab, now kitted out with ear defenders and moving targets) and would simply be able to peer into the window, see a class of fifteen children with guns and have a field day. Maybe we’re making it too easy for the police these days. “I couldn’t help it” pleads Supt. Johnson in court, “there were just put kids with guns everywhere, what was I supposed to do!?” probably to get let out with a heroes medal and a state holiday named after him.
Either way, if a citizen from another country makes a trip to your country deliberately to attempt to assassinate a presidential candidate, that has to speak volumes about international perception of this cretin, sorry I mean the POTUS. Maybe America just missed that humbling feeling you get after you deal out an apology for something. Every couple of years under Bush, a new book was released which contained photos of hundreds of American citizens holding up signs like a Bob Dylan music video, apologising to the rest of us for what they’d done. Then they went and elected someone fit for office. By mistake. Twice (Classic America). But now they’ve gone and realised the errors of their ways, and boy have they over-compensated in trying to correct that mistake. Publishers all across the USA are now rubbing their hands with glee thinking about all the ways that they can try and sell more books documenting the ditsy Blonde twirling her hair and fluttering her eyelashes as she apologises for repeatedly rear-ending your parked car in your own driveway.
The world will not end. We will not enter a life of chaos, rain will not start to fall upwards and tobacco prices will not fall, it’s just going to be a minor adjustment. It’s going to be like a family gathering except that your ex coke-addict cousin who has been straight for 8 years, got into medical school and was about to graduate has just dropped out, started hanging out with his old crowd again and is now hooked on junk and has vomited down his own shirt before trying to give you a hug. It’s going to be annoying, and we’re going to have to wash plenty of puke, blood and piss out of our carpets and clothes before we find a way to learn to live with our junkie cousin and his choices, but we will get through this because at the end of the day, that’s what we do. If not, then in the humble words of Therapy? “Suicide pact – you first!”
Words by Rich Taylor