Atlanta, GA - Time magazine, the once great publication, chose, earlier this month, as they always do, a “Person of the Year.” While in times past such greats as Charles Lindbergh, Elisabeth II, Martin Luther King Jr., and Winston Churchill have taken the great honor, this year the weak, indecisive, and oft criticized by both sides of the political spectrum Angela Merkel, head of the nation of Germany, was chosen. She it was that let half a million hungry, ragged, war weary Syrian immigrants into her country earlier this year with nearly no vetting process, and blasted all other nations that did not do the same. Her nation has since closed its doors as her own party considers kicking her out of office.
Merkel is of course not the person of the year. J.J Abrams, the head of ISIS, John Stewart, or Hillary Clinton would all have been better picks for someone who "for better or for worse...has done the most to influence the events of the year.”
But my vote goes towards the yellow thing that goes around speaking its own language. No, not the minions, although that’s a tempting choice as well. I’m talking about the patron saint of comedians and disillusioned people everywhere; Donald Trump.
For many years in the political world, a sort of almost Victorian propriety has reigned. Stifling rules that force people to call their greatest enemies “my dear friend” even though we all know it isn’t true. Constant shouts for political correctness and a demanding that nobody say anything offensive to anyone. For a long time, in the winter of political correctness, while we almost all froze to death listening to speeches so full of empty promises, boring rhetoric, and yawn inducing nausea that politics, one of the most important of all endeavors, was in danger of losing its audience, which is, of course, one of the greatest dangers in the world. Loss of freedoms and the rise of dictatorships thrive in darkness disinterest.
There are plenty of things not to like. You don’t have to agree with Donald Trump on one single thing. But he has at least put the fire back into politics, and into the most important race in the entire world. For a long time there was a suffocation in the nether world of political conversation. I don’t know how long it will last, Trump might die a horrible political death just days into 2016, although that doesn’t seem overly likely. However, 2015 will forever be remembered, not as the year that some German bureaucrat did some very forgettable things, but rather, 2015 will be thought of as the Year of Trump, the year that, for a little while at least, if even for one fleeting second, the billionaire put the air back in our political lungs, and let us all breathe again.
Andrew C. Abbott