Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

The Candidate Awake at 2 A.M

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

The Candidate Awake at 2 A.M

Article excerpt

The cap does not look good on you, it's a duffer's cap, and when you come to the microphone, you look like the warm-up guy, the guy who announces the license number of the car left in the parking lot, doors locked, lights on, motor running. The brim shadows your face, which gives a sinister look, as if you'd come to town to announce the closing of the pulp factory. Your eyes look dead and your scowl does not suggest American greatness so much as American indigestion. Your hair is the wrong color: People don't want a president to be that shade of blond. You know that now. Why doesn't someone in your entourage dare to say these things? So sad. The fans in the arenas are wild about you, and Sean Hannity is as loyal as they come, but Rudy and Christie and Newt are reassuring in that stilted way of hospital visitors. And The New York Times treats you like the village idiot. This is painful for a Queens boy trying to win respect in Manhattan, where the Times is the Supreme Liberal Jewish Anglican Arbiter of Who Has The Smarts and What Goes Where.

When you came to Manhattan 40 years ago, you discovered that, in entertainment, the press, politics, finance, everywhere you went, you ran into Jews, and they are not like you: Jews didn't go in for big yachts and a fleet of aircraft - they showed off by way of philanthropy or by raising brilliant offspring. They sympathized with the civil rights movement. In Queens, blacks were a threat to property values - they belonged in the Bronx, not down the street.

To the Times, Queens is Cleveland. Bush league. You are Queens. The casinos were totally Queens, the gold faucets in your triplex, the bragging, the insults, but you wanted to be liked by Those People. You wanted Mike Bloomberg to invite you to dinner at his townhouse. You wanted the Times to run a three-part story about you, that you meditate and are a passionate kayaker and collect 14th- century Islamic mosaics. You wish you were that person, but you didn't have the time.

Running for president is your last bid for the respect of Manhattan. If you were to win election, they couldn't ridicule you anymore. They could be horrified, but there is nothing ridiculous about being Leader of the Free World. …

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