Tuesday, December 17, 2019


I don't know what will be said about this moment in the history books provided to Donald Trump's grandchildren and great-grandchildren. (I'm not sure those kids will ever see what's written about him in those textbooks because, being Trumps, they probably won't make a habit of doing much required reading, even the smart grandchild who was speaking Mandarin at age six.)

But I wouldn't assume that every future textbook will treat Trump harshly. We shouldn't underestimate the Trump worship in red America, if not, in all likelihood, in the communities where Trump descendants are likely to live in the future. In red America, I suspect that citizens will want textbooks that treat Trump's six-page open letter to Nancy Pelosi -- a distillation of every MAGA rally talking point and Doug Collins/Devin Nunes special-pleading moment from the impeachment hearings -- as if it's the conservative equivalent of King's "Letter from Birmingham Jail." I don't know whether our schools will degenerate to the point where the letter will be approvingly presented in texts chosen by right-leaning school boards, but I suspect that conservative children will learn to memorize the letter, the way students used to memorize the Gettysburg Address.

Maybe I'm overstating the way Trump will live on, but I don't think it's by much. He'll be no less a contested figure a generation from now than he is today -- especially if he's defeated in 2020, before the recession that would inevitably lead to some MAGA fans to rethink their devotion to him. A defeated Trump will be the American right's Che, a man figuratively martyred while fighting for the revolution. I don't know how textbook publishers seeking to sell to red, blue, and purple communities will deal with Trump, but I'm sure that at least some providers of curricula for right-leaning homeschoolers and Christian-right schools will treat this letter as a triumphant act of speaking truth to power.

Meanwhile, it's already being meme-ified:

I'm sure the T-shirts are being printed right now.

And Trump undoubtedly decided that the letter needed to be written and released not because he believed it would help his defense, but because he can't stand the thought that all the attention right now is being focused on House Democrats and not him.



This is a sign that MAGA World thinks the letter is a home run -- the authors are going to the media to publicly claim credit.



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