Trump and the s-word

by | January 24, 2018 12:25 am

think the media have been harder on Trump than any other President certainly that I’ve known about – Jimmy Carter

According to David Brooks, a columnist for the New York Times, the anti-Trump movement “suffers from insularity. Most of the people who detest Trump don’t know anyone who works with him or support him. And if they do have friends and family members who admire Trump, they’ve learned not to talk about this subject. So, they get most of their information about Trumpism from others who detest Trumpism, which is always a recipe for epistemic closure”.

Last year, my first column was on Trump and it’s no coincidence that he’s the subject again one year after, no thanks to the anti-Trump brigade. They’ve been upset since he defied their predictions and expectations at the polls. These liberal media houses in the US, the supposed champions of open-mindedness, are crustaceans when it comes to Trump. Right from the inauguration of Trump as the 45th President of the US, the media led by the likes of CNN and the New York Times have found different narratives to ridicule Trump: from the Russia’s involvement in his victory, to the Muslim ban, to the racial division, to sexual assault, to mental insanity, to Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury and lately the “Shithole” statement. Unfortunately, they do not spend the same amount of time, discussing how Trump has almost obliterated ISIS, how he has reduced unemployment rates, how the stock market is on the rise and how generally the economy is better. These acts of journalistic insincerity are unethical, a dent to the trust entrusted to the media and it exhibits how lowbrow the anti-Trump agenda is. This leaves Trump with no other option than to tweet. Tweeting is the only credible way to express himself unhindered.

Recently, some media houses alleged that Trump during a meeting with some members of Congress asked, referring to immigrants from Haiti, El Salvador and Africa, “Why are we having all these people from Shithole countries come here?”. Dick Durbin, a top Democrat, confirmed its veracity. Trump has denied making this statement and two other Republican Senators present: Tom Cotton and David Perdue also denied hearing those words at the meeting. This Shithole statement has distracted the essence of the meeting which was to discuss Deferred Action for childhood Arrivals (DACA) and border security.

Though it’s Dick Durbin’s word against that of Trump and the two Republican senators, Trump has been labeled racist. I wonder how Trump can be a racist when he was purportedly referring to the countries and not the people.

Suddenly Africa, which some think is a country, is being pitied. Even Anderson Cooper of CNN faked to fight back tears. The media has exaggerated this word out of proportion in a bid to ridicule and undermine Trump.

The UN Commissioner for Human Rights and the African Union (AU) have both joined the hosts of Pecksniffs condemning Trump for his alleged “Shithole” statement.

Rupert Colville, the UN Human Rights spokesman, said, “If confirmed, these are shocking and shameful comments from the president of the US, I am sorry but there is no other word one can use, but racist. You can’t dismiss entire countries and continents as Shitholes whose entire population is not white and therefore are not welcomed”.

The UN and the AU are castigating Trump for an alleged statement which can be described as inconsequential. In Nigeria, hundreds of herdsmen and their victims have died and neither the UN nor the AU have deemed it fit to say or do anything but they were prompt to condemn a statement that is still been contested. Indeed, they are more interested in racism than in murder. What a priority. Their interest in the well-being of Africa is superficial, if not I see no reason why they are fixated with an eight-letter word when hundreds of lives are being lost. The African Union which is gradually becoming an irrelevant institution in the world lacks the locus to comment on this issue; demanding for an apology is the height of hypocrisy.

Now my question: Is our anger hinged on the fact that the word “Shithole” is vulgar or that the idea Trump intended to portray of Africa was wrong? We Africans have used and still use more disparaging words to refer to our continents, but because Trump said it the heavens must fall.

If Africa isn’t a Shithole, Why are Africans—even at the pain of death—struggling to migrate to America and Europe?

Why are Africans travelling abroad including their Presidents for health care?

Why are we largely dependent on foreign aids and grants?

Why are millions of Africans travelling abroad for education?

Why are millions of Africans travelling aboard to find jobs?

Why are Africans mothers travelling abroad to give birth?

Why do Africans travel abroad to rest?

Why do we refine fuel abroad?

Why are millions of Africans achieving professional feats in America and Europe and not in Africa?

Why are the foreign embassies full every day?

Why are we relieved when we leave the Nigerian airport?

Why do Nigerians comport themselves when they leave Nigerian shores but behave scandalously while in Nigeria?

Why are looted funds taken and invested abroad?

Saying that Africa is not a Shithole is an act of self-denial. A visit to the American embassy or the VFS office or the Chinese embassy is a testimony to how big and deep the Shithole is.

If we think Trump is wrong and he has insulted us, let Africans stay in their respective countries and change it. The best way to reply to Trump is to show him how Africa has become a paradise.

To our African brothers and sisters, who are castigating Trump from their comfort spaces in America or Europe, if you think Trump is wrong, please come back home where you would not experience an atom of racism.  Whether we accept it or not, the reality speaks for itself and the truth is bitter.

I think Trump should be given a chance to work; he should be given a fair opportunity to be known, understood and loved. The persecution of Trump as the last election showed won’t destroy him; it would only boost his chances of a second term.

J.B Nwachukwu