I was considering various topics this week but couldn’t decide on just one. For example, the historic acquittal of Trump in the Senate impeachment trial which, unlike any impeachment trial ever there were no witnesses or documents. This is commonplace in Russia, N. Korea and China but here, it’s NO laughing matter.
Mitt Romney’s emotional vote to convict was driven by conscience, his own and Trump’s lack of one. As for the rest of the spineless GOP Senate, in my opinion, they’re “Profiles in Cowardice.”
I had also considered a column about the Democratic Iowa Caucus fiasco. It reminded me of Will Rogers who said, “I’m not a member of any organized political party, I’m a Democrat.” (So now I’ve offended Republicans and Democrats both, not easy to do, especially in the first two paragraphs.)
Then there’s Trump’s reality show style State of the Union, which I call the “State of the Base.” Rather than try to unite the country, with 31 documented falsehoods, it was like one of his political rallies as worked up Republicans chanted “4 more years!” Also unprecedented, and like a petulant child, Trump refused to shake Speaker Pelosi’s hand. (She ripped up his speech immediately after he was done, which I confess I enjoyed.)
As for the speech, once again there were Trump’s disturbing “brain glitches” that some are calling mini-strokes that leave him unable to pronounce simple words like “justices” or “sanctuary.” It’s like a record skipping, his shoulders spasm and his face looks confused. Frankly, they leave me wondering what the hell neurologically is wrong with him?
Switching to Trump’s personality, in the past three years it’s obvious maturity is not his forte. What he resorts to and is quite skilled at, if you can call it a skill, are his vicious schoolyard bully nicknames for his political opponents, or even a teenager like Greta Thunberg, or anyone who criticizes him even slightly. Stooping to his level to fight back is futile. As Mark Twain said, “Don’t ever wrestle with a pig for two reasons: One, you’ll just get dirty. And two, the pig loves it.”
On a lighter note, part of Trump’s “indestructible beautiful border wall” collapsed due to…wind! But since it fell on the Mexican side, Trump will likely say Mexico should pay for the cleanup. Truth be known, Trump is so dangerous to democracy and just plain exhausting, my motto has become, “Wake me when he’s gone.”
Then there’s the seemingly unrelated subjects of “Me Too” and this past Sunday’s controversial halftime show starring Shakira and J’Lo. I’ll try to explain, but first, a few things that maybe most of the country agrees on. I think.
Take Bill Cosby, whom a large majority feel he got what he deserved. He’s eligible for release in 18 months but because he refuses to admit he did anything wrong he will serve all 10 years as parole requires remorse. (Who else can’t admit doing anything wrong or ever show remorse? Hmm.)
Or take Harvey Weinstein. (Please.) Charged with sexual assault and, of course, innocent until proven guilty, not many are rallying to Weinstein’s defense. (Unless you count Alan Dershowitz.) Simpson.) Poor disabled Weinstein, in court he needs a walker and couldn’t have committed these crimes. And yet, other times he’s caught on video walking just fine. Go figure.
As for the Me Too era, it continues to be a complicated subject. A highly successful Beverly Hills lawyer friend admits, “When hiring female employees, all things being equal, being attractive used to be an asset. Not anymore as it’s too risky. Now the plainer the better,” he said. Imagine an extremely attractive female job applicant saying, “I can look unattractive. Just give me a chance.”
That brings me to Super Bowl LIV (54 to me) and it’s highly charged 12-minute halftime extravaganza which featured Shakira and Jennifer Lopez. It was a Miami-style explosion of dance and song that rocked the house. (“The house” being 80,000 fans paying $5,200 to $33,000 a ticket and luxury suites from $175,000 to $700,000; 100 million TV viewers with advertisers shelling out $5.6 million for a 30 second commercial.)
It was pretty amazing how they managed to juggle all the transitions of remarkable talent and work fireworks into the act. I wondered how they could rehearse and choreograph it all. Shakira and J’Lo looked, danced and sang terrifically but certain moments, especially in the Me Too era, suddenly seemed inappropriate, especially for family programming.
I’m referring to all the booty shaking and J’Lo even employing a stripper pole in her act. The late Carol Channing performed in the first Super Bowl halftime show and I don’t recall Carol using a stripper pole. That said, as I watch our democracy disappearing right in front of my eyes, I suppose it’s the least of my worries.
Google “Mitt Romney’s emotional explanation of his vote” to watch his powerful speech as the only Senator in history to vote to convict a president of his own party. Jack is at: facebook.com/jackneworth, twitter.com/jackneworth and email@example.com