Saturday, March 12, 2016

Response to A Red-Hot Friday

(See: Just Above Sunset: A Red-Hot Friday)

During this "violence" phase of Trumpmania that we seem to be experiencing, I've come to realize another metaphor for him that's been hanging around in the back of my brain.

Not just in his manner of speaking, but also in what it is he's been saying about violence reminds me of Robert Di Niro's portrayal of Al Capone in that mostly-fictional 1987 "Untouchables" movie. This is from the very first scene, with a chummy Capone, surrounded by sycophantic reporters, taking a shave in a barbershop:
Reporter: [to Al Capone] An article, which I believe appeared in a newspaper, asked why, since you are, or it would seem that you are, in effect, the mayor of Chicago, you've not simply been appointed to that position. [other reporters laugh] 
Capone: Well, I'll tell ya, you know, it's touching. Like a lot of things in life, we laugh because it's funny and we laugh because it's true. Now, some people will say - reformers, they'll say, 'Put that man in jail! What does he think he is doing?' Well, what I hope I'm doing, and here's where your English paper's got a point, is - I'm responding to the will of the people.
That same scene is the one in which Capone says:
Capone: [to reporters] Yes! There is violence in Chicago. But not by me, and not by anybody who works for me, and I'll tell you why -- because it's bad for business.
Here's a quote, said to be from the real Al Capone, but one that I can't authenticate, which means chances are, it's a fake. Still, it's supposed to be Capone warning people he'll be nice to you only if you're nice to him, and I can even imagine Trump saying it:
Don't mistake my kindness for weakness. I am kind to everyone, but when someone is unkind to me, weak is not what you are going to remember about me.
Sometimes, it's Benito Mussolini, but lately, the more I see and hear Donald Trump speaking on television, the more I find myself thinking of Al Capone. In fact, all three of those guys remind me of each other.

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