This holiday season, we set aside feeble attempts to compare PEOTUS Donald Trump to political leaders of the past. Whether Andrew Jackson, Hugo Chavez, Ronald Reagan or Huey Long, these analogies fizzle like a snowflake on a hot Texas sidewalk.
The comparison meriting more serious yuletide attention is that with Santa Claus, AKA Kris Kringle (or, some places south of the border wall, Papa Noel). The overlap is unavoidable:
- Donald is gonna find out who’s naughty and nice (assisted by Chief Elf Vladimir and Deputy Elf Julian).
- Like Santa, Donald got his position through old world charm and outlasting the competition, not some rigged popularity contest.
- Like Santa, Donald loves to give things away. Whether cabinet posts to wealthy contributors or Crimea to Russia, his spirit of sharing knows no bounds.
- Like Santa with Rudolph, Donald doesn’t fear turning to non-traditional picks to lead his team and is willing to overlook a red glow others considered disqualifying.
- As with Santa and Mrs. Claus, we hear about his wife, but she rarely makes appearances.
- Like Santa, he understands that it’s cheaper to make his products abroad.
- Donald too has a little round belly that shakes like jelly (whether he’s ribbing the disabled or giving a wink of his eye to Kluxers).
- Like Santa, he causes some children to lose sleep over what he may have planned for their families.
- Like Santa, he will run his White House workshop as a family business.
- Like Santa, he has his own high-speed, gold-finished, customized aircraft to better enable him to rapidly visit members of the working class.
- Like Santa, he can give rise to a childlike belief, even in senior citizens.
- Like Santa, his apparent generosity always turns out to be funded out of someone else’s pockets.
- Like Santa, his mercantile concerns reach all parts of the globe.
- Like Santa, he causes enormous crowds to gather, much to the consternation of others.
- As with Santa, if you want to tick someone off, disclose to them he’s pretend.
- Like Santa, some say he promotes a much-needed spirit; others suspect it’s all about the Benjamins.
- As with a mall Santa, sometimes merely seeing him in all his grandeur is enough to cause some to want to run away in tears.
- As with a bell-ringing Santa, he won’t tell you how much money is in his kettle.
- Finally, when it comes to Donald and Santa, as hard as I may try, I am unable to suspend my disbelief.
Whether you and your comrades await presents from Ded Moroz/Grandfather Frost, Los Reyes Magos, Old St. Nick or someone else, I wish for you a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, joyous Kwanza and festive Festivus, plus a family dinner at which views about the PEOTUS go unspoken (i.e., kept snuggled all tight in their beds), and a happy New Year.
This column originally appeared in the Waco Tribune-Herald on December 20, 2016.