On April 9th, 2019, President of the United States Donald J. Trump tweeted a video that appeared to be a campaign ad for his 2020 re-election bid, captioned "MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN". At first glance, it appears to be a poorly made, low-resolution iMovie project, complete with corny stock cinema music, filling you in on the trials and tribulations of our poor, underdog president at a whopping six frames per second. But this video is more than just another national embarrassment - it's a clue into Trump's psyche.
Before I analyze the living hell out of this thing, I'm going to give a quick disclaimer: this video was not made by Trump or his campaign staff. The original video was uploaded to YouTube three days before the tweet, by a user named "Dr. Steve Turley". I'm unsure if the video was actually made by him, but he appears to have a copyright claim on it, aside from the horrible misuse of Hans Zimmer's "Why Do We Fall?" from the Dark Knight Rises (although I must say, the fact that Warner Bros has sent the White House a cease and desist order to remove the video is a delicious bit of irony). Unsurprisingly, Trump failed to credit anyone for the video, but it's not like we can expect him to give credit where credit is due at this point.
Not even a mere twenty seconds into the video and we're hit with a cringe-inducing summary of Trump's rise to presidency. "First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they call you racist." Then BAM, there's a shot of Hillary Clinton, some menacing looking hundred dollar bills, CNN, and Bill Clinton. The fact that Trump still considers the Clintons to be THAT relevant in today's political arena is a joke. It's almost like watching Paul Rudd in The 40 Year Old Virgin complain about his ex-girlfriend, whom he's been broken up with for years, at the same time pathetically beg for her attention.
The music intensifies. Now, we see Trump Doing Important Things (is he standing in front of a tank?). Trump walking with Ivanka (the quality is so bad you can barely make out her face), Trump shaking hands in front of mouth-breathing people-props, Trump walking off an airplane, Trump standing in front of a large crowd - oops, another random cutaway of former President Obama and Hillary Clinton! - more handshaking, more walking in front of large crowds... ah yes. Our president has truly done a lot these past two years.
Spoiler alert: In all two minutes and two seconds in this spoof trailer, not a hint of policy is mentioned. But that's because people who vote for Trump don't want a politician - they want a television star.
It's important to note that Trump sees himself this way too. If he really, truly respected the title of the presidency, he would be trying to convince you how qualified he is to fulfill the role of one of the country's highest public servants. Instead, he's focused on protecting his ego. My favorite example of this is the random inclusion of Amy Schumer, Bryan Cranston, and Rosie O'Donnell, all celebrities who have criticized him in the past. For what reason? Vengeance? A little third-grade bully-esque "I'll show you"? Why on earth weren't Alec Baldwin's hilarious SNL impressions included in this vile display of immaturity? The only valid conclusion is that they must have hit a little too close to home for our snowflake and his blizzard of supporters.
Take a look at the last bit of language. "YOUR VOTE PROVED THEM ALL WRONG" shows that Trump is extending his ego to his supporters. Your vote isn't going to actually make the country better - it's a bitter strike against establishment Democrats and liberal media outlets. Trump uses this rhetoric time after time again, to manipulate the small amount of influence you as an individual have in our democracy.
To anyone voting in the upcoming presidential election: no matter what your political affiliation, please do not use your vote for someone who uses tacky fan edits to promote their self-centered agenda. You deserve a much better president than that.
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