I’ve said on more goddamn times than I can count that the best way to respond to parody, satire, or comical skewering is to take it in stride. One of the reasons the famed “Colbert Bump” exists is that Stephen Colbert is a guy that tears into everyone, so showing up on his program and laughing alongside him shows the world that you’re a good person at heart, even if there are quibbles over policy and the like. Mike Huckabee sure as hell wouldn’t have gotten that popular just on his own merits.
Today’s example of “how not to respond correctly” is Donald Dump, who basically cried and whined like a child after getting his ass roasted and passed around the dinner table by Obama and Seth Meyers. If you saw the video, you might recall that the whole time, he was sitting and stewing Bush-style while the entire room around him laughed. His response?
“Well, I really understood what I was getting into — I didn’t know that I’d be virtually the sole focus,” Trump said. “I guess when you’re leading in the polls that sort of thing tends to happen. But I was certainly in a certain way having a good time listening. I don’t think the American people are having a good time with $5 gas. … I was thinking to myself as they were doing this, you know, the American people are really suffering and we’re all” having fun at a gala.
Let’s dissect this point by point, shall we?
- First off, Trump keeps on yammering that he’s “leading in the polls”, which is absolute horseshit. The only one he keeps mentioning is a supposed CNN poll that had him either beating or tied with Barack Obama, with the slight problem that no such poll exists (the only one that had him close has since been rendered obsolete). So right off the bat, he’s either lying or deluded himself. I blame the hair if it’s the latter. In reality, Trump only leads amongst Teabaggers, and with a bad enough poll that the goddamn National Review called him on it.
- Even if it were the case that Trump led the polls, that has nothing to do with why he’s the focal point. The reason Trump is getting beaten around is because he is batshit crazy. Comedians rip into the best targets for humor, and boy howdy Trump set himself up for enough of that. Between his ridiculous birther nonsense and general assholery, Trump is second only to Sarah Palin for the undistilled amount of comic ore that he produces that the likes of Obama and Meyers can turn into gold.
- That last bit just plain pisses me off. He came, voluntarily, to listen to what he knew damn well was going to be an evening of jokes and parody. Then, when he finds himself at the receiving end, suddenly he starts crying about how “the American people are really suffering”? You know, Trumpleton, if that was really your big concern, why’d you show up in the first place?
Again, if he’d shown up, laughed with the crowd, and not come off like a jilted ex-girlfriend in his response, he might actually be able to turn his abysmal polling numbers around. Instead, what he’s done is inculcated himself with his frothing base and done nothing whatsoever to endear himself to anyone beyond the Teabaggers, whereas Obama’s humorous performance is far more likely to have helped him out in the eyes of those who have no particular axe to grind.
Lesson learned, people: take the jokes, roll with the punches, don’t be a crybaby.