From “A.Word.A.Day” by Anu Garg: “trumpery” pronounced (TRUMM-puh-ree). Meaning – noun; Something showy but worthless. Nonsense or rubbish, Deceit; fraud; trickery. ORIGIN – from French word tromper (to deceive). Earliest documented use: 1481.

 

From “A.Word.A.Day” by Anu Garg: “bident” pronounced (BY-duhnt). Meaning – noun; a two-pronged instrument, weapon, implement, etc. ORIGIN – from Latin word bidens (two-pronged), from bi-(two) + dens (tooth). Earliest documented use: 1675.

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Writing about politics is a thankless path, but with the upcoming election, perhaps the most important in our country’s history, one must consider it a duty to vote and share thoughts with each other.

This political season has been tainted by COVID-19 bringing out the best in us, and the worst. It also has brought some clarity; who do we want to lead us out of this abyss?

Do character and truth matter?

On Nov. 3, I’m voting for “nice.” The amount of negativity in today’s campaigning is nauseating, as is the amount of money spent to slander the opponent. But I get it, nice doesn’t always work.

Getting into the trenches is where we are. We’ve been there a long time, but it seems worse, the stakes magnified by a president who tweets like an eighth grader and name-calls like a 9-year-old. The leader of the free world is modeling this for our children and the adults of our great country, so no surprise what would not be acceptable in prior decades is running fast and free as this decade ends.

Mohandas Gandhi once wrote: “When I despair, I remember that all through history, the way of truth and love always won. There have been murderers and tyrants, and for a time they can seem invincible. But in the end they always fall. Think of it, always.”

There is a measure of hope in Gandhi’s words, but it is still unnerving that we have a president who is a bully and a conman; many will respond to this and call me a “hater.” I get it but this is not about hate, it is about the opposite; it is about valuing decency.

Growing up, I was considered the “nice” one. That meant, as a teenager the “girls” would be in the toe-mobile (don’t ask) on Friday nights and the “boys” would be looking to see what party spot the bullet-holed Olds Cutlass could be found at. On Saturday night (date night), the toe-mobile would be driving aimlessly around with the other dateless boys, inevitably ending up at the crematory in the backlands of where the Westboro State Mental Hospital was located. We would race our cars up and down the dirt roads and pits, in between sips from our bottles of Boone's Farm Strawberry Hill and Apple wines.

In those days, “nice” meant I would never have a girlfriend until I was 24 and a pretty 28-year-old teacher thought that “nice” was enough to start a relationship that now enters its 40th year.

Sometimes it takes a while to appreciate “nice.” I do now and that is what I am voting for. Nice is about a moral compass, it is about looking at the big picture and how we want to be remembered. People don’t remember what you did for them; they remember how you made them feel. When someone treats us nicely, we remember.

The other thing about nice is that you know it when you see it.

In the case of our current president, he brags he knows more than the generals, more than the doctors, more than the scientists, and is a name-caller and bully. Early on he physically pushed aside a world leader at a conference; the world leader came from a small country and Trump pushed (caught on video) to get in front of him for a photo op.

Trump's actions follow his words; his words are ugly and so are the actions that follow.

He tells us he is the best businessman ever, yet he has failed many times (including six bankruptcies that led to many workers getting stiffed while he continued his lavish lifestyle), a corrupt nonprofit, and a Trump University proven fake and forced to close and pay fines. He couldn’t even find success selling water. Trump single-handedly took down the USFL because the other owners would not do it his way, destroying jobs and livelihoods for thousands. He now continues a grudge with the NFL because they won and he lost.

When it comes to gambling, the usual proposition is “the house always wins.” Citizen Trump was the only one I can think of who ran a casino and the house lost. And then he called everyone else a “loser,” walking away with banks on the hook and leaving workers “holding the bag.”

Now, with citizen lives on the line, Trump's most ridiculous quote of all time: “I’ll be right eventually” when it comes to the end of the coronavirus.

See you on the other side.

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“Life is mostly froth and bubble, /Two things stand like stone, /Kindness in another’s trouble, /Courage in your own.” — Adam Lindsay Gordon, poet (1833-1870)