Chatting over coffee, a friend told a joke that not only made me laugh, but also made me think: “Donald Trump dies and finds God peering down at him from his golden throne. ‘Well Donald,’ God asks in a booming voice. ‘What have you to say for yourself?’ Trump doesn’t hesitate ‘You’re in my chair,’ he booms back.”
My laughter was enough to startle those around me, forcing their gaze to rise from their iPhones. I smiled by way of apology. But on the way home, I got to thinking about God. I hasten to remind my readers I’m an atheist, one more comfortable with proof than belief. Nonetheless, God’s popularity throughout human history is evidence that people need their faith. A deity of one’s own seems to confer a purpose upon existence, a powerful aphrodisiac, I do admit
Donald Trump, a mere mortal, could never confer such importance upon any individual. But Giles Fraser, a London parish priest, thinks there is one who can. England’s Queen, Elizabeth II. He points out that on public occasions, despite the arguments of anti-Monarchists, British people of all backgrounds and political persuasions stand and raise their voices in an affectionate round of “God Save the Queen.” Behavior like this, he points out “would never be directed at an elected official.” (“Thank God we have the queen,” by Giles Fraser, reprint from The Guardian in The Week, December 2, 2016, pg. 14.)
Doubtless, this parish priest is right. I can’t imagine singing a hymn of praise to Donald Trump or even Nancy Pelosi. I might bend a knee to Hillary, but that idea has been rejected among the many. So, what are we to do if America is without a unifying symbol?
Would it seem immodest if I proffered myself? I’ve always fancied a crown. In fact, I have friends – and here I use the term ‘friends’ loosely– who tell me I behave as if I wore one.
Well, why be shy? My new president isn’t modest. “Every person has a very large ego,” he says. “Mother Teresa. Jesus Christ. Far greater egos than you will ever understand.”— Playboy, 1990 So, why should I quarrel with his assessment regarding vanity, he being the world’s expert on the subject?
(First published 1/27/17)