Two down, two to go. Two more days of the Republican National Convention being held this week in Cleveland. Two days down and thankfully, there has been no notable violence, no shootings despite people running around with guns openly displayed, and no killings. I am surprised in a most pleasant way!
Last night, Tuesday, the GOP officially declared Donald Trump to be its official nominee. Yawn. Who saw that coming? Melania Trump gave a speech on Monday night … yawn … as I mentioned in an earlier post. Then Scott Baio, a 2nd rate has-been actor most noted for his role as Chachi from Happy Days of yore, gave a somewhat mundane speech. But the real fun is not so much in who is there as in who is not … and why.
Former Presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush, as well as former Florida Governor Jeb Bush all declined to attend. No surprise there, as they have all declined to endorse Trump. But some of the reasons others within the Republican Party have given for avoiding the trip to the circus are too funny. For instance, Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska will instead be taking his children “to watch some dumpster fires.” Now that sounds like a really hot time, indeed! Arizona Senator Jeff Flake will be mowing his lawn (that must be some big lawn if it is going to take him the better part of a week!) Senator Steve Daines of Montana is going fly fishing. And Ohio Governor John Kasich will be in Cleveland, but not at the convention. Instead, he will be speaking at U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Mitt Romney will be absent, as will Senator John McCain of Arizona, who had the unmitigated gall to be shot down over Hanoi in 1967, seriously injured, captured and held hostage for six years during the Vietnam War, thus making him “not a hero” according to Trump. Gee, I wonder why he doesn’t want to come celebrate at the convention? All in all, more than 20 senators and several House members, along with a half-dozen Republican governors, won’t attend the convention. Never before in recent history have so many prominent party officials boycotted the event or found convenient other reasons not to attend because they either didn’t approve of or were uncomfortable with their party’s presumptive nominee. One would think this would send a message loud and clear to nominee Trump, but I imagine he is too busy polishing his trumpet to notice or much care.
So, the convention is left with a handful of Republican leaders, B-grade actors like Scott Baio and Willie Robertson of Duck Dynasty (I thought that show had died?). And, of course, Trump’s illustrious family members.
As part of the convention, a ‘Women Vote Trump’ rally was held. Guess how many people showed up? Nope, not that many. Seventeen. Yes, you read that right … seventeen … 17. Now isn’t that a huge surprise? I mean, he has been such a sweet man with such a positive attitude toward women in general, right?
Meanwhile, on the outside looking in are the gun crazies and the Westboro church crowd … a crowd of five members. The Westboro people held their usual, offensive signs, saying “We have a duty to warn. If we don’t warn and they go to hell, their blood is on us.” Yawn. But what brought a bit of humour to their protest was that there were some others there with signs mocking the WBC group, signs that read “God Hates Morning People” and “Bangs Are The Devil’s Children”. Just a little good, clean fun, folks. Some 40 police officers guarded the five WBC protestors … frankly, I think it was a waste of manpower, but then what do I know?
Activists from Black Lives Matter, Westboro Baptist Church and the KKK were in the square and, at one time, were said to be throwing urine at each other. Yep, just good clean fun. Yawn. I really thought I would be busy this week just trying to keep up with the news coming out of Cleveland, but thus far, the convention itself is boring and the protests seem to have been much more peaceful than anticipated. I am not complaining! Let us hope for two more days like the last two, then we can put it to bed.