A Wink and a Nudge
Trump’s Wink and Nudge
I can’t be the only one who saw it, can I? I’ve listened to the many similar analyses of the GOP Convention: their direct appeal to fearful and racist suburbia, as they perceive it; their hope to peel away Black male voters with their parade of (anti-abortion) Black male supporters; their attempts to define Biden, if not himself a full-blown Socialist (egad!), then at least a tool of the “Radical Left.”
But so far, I have heard no mention at all of the broader appeal to American men, in general – men of all races and ethnicities. It occurred early on in his acceptance speech, and flitted by very quickly. But it was as familiar to me, and to every other man in America, as the ubiquitous high-five salute. It was that wink and nudge between men who want to suggest that some other man is, well, something less than a man!
I thought it might have been my own sensitivity that caused me to see something that wasn’t really there, that I had only imagined the subtle exchange that happened in one of those rare moments when Trump became animated by leaving the canned stuff on the teleprompter and reverting to his normal schtick. So, I went back into the speech to try to find the exact spot (and to spare you the nausea of having to sit through it all again), and I found it! I didn’t imagine it. There it was, the suggestive wink and nudge that boys learn very early, and carry with them into “manhood.”
It took up a mere ten seconds in a monologue that lasted 110 minutes! Those ten seconds began at thirteen minutes and sixteen seconds into the speech (13.16) and ended about ten seconds later at 13.26. Immediately after intoning, “If given a chance, he will be the destroyer of American greatness,” President Grab ‘Em By the Pussy, said, “For 47 years, Joe Biden took the donations of blue collar workers, gave them hugs and... even kisses.”
Then the President looked out onto his adoring crowd, unmasked, and took in the predictable titters and giggles approvingly, raising his eyebrows in that unsubtle way men have of silently communicating their derision towards other men. The point made, he moved on.
Perhaps no one has remarked on this routine precisely because it is so unremarkable, so familiar, so much a part of that “locker room talk” that candidate Trump used to explain away his misogynistic “…they let you grab ‘em..” remark that was caught on tape. And so disgusting. Let me put it as delicately as I can: the man’s a creep!
Of course, this was certainly not the most egregious example from the litany of hypocrisy and self-promotion that characterized a national event that had all the trappings of a Nuremberg Rally. I know this ten-second titter fest doesn’t rise to the level of dangerous rhetoric and daily lies that define the man and his speeches. But still, he and his loyal minions showed once again how low they are willing to go. And, once again, we need to call them out.