Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Donald Trump and the World of “Me”

Gage Skidmore/Flickr)
(Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

When it comes to this election cycle, I’ve been wrong about almost everything. I thought the election would be controlled by money, and that Donald Trump was definitely not going to be president. For my first column of this academic year I confidently concluded that by Christmas we would have a Trump-less campaign. I was hardly correct. Trump is not an idiot; in fact he is rather smart, beating America and his fellow candidates at their own game.

Trump is not an establishment Republican. Most of his policies are rather repulsive. However, he has proven that likability and sensibility do not have to go together. Say what you want about Trump as a person but Trump as a presidential candidate is nothing shy of genius.

I cannot think of a non-incumbent presidential election where the candidate leading in every major poll from day one stayed at the top and won the nomination. Now, in fairness, Trump has not locked up the nomination. There are still more primaries to go and ballots to be tallied. However, for someone who is so infatuated with himself and his persona, he never stopped winning or stooped to number two.

It will be interesting to see how historians and scholars interpret the 2016 election cycle. Whatever is said, it will not be boring. But perhaps more shocking than a Trump presidency becoming a reality is all the people (including myself) who never thought it was going to happen. Young voters, especially college students who drank the progressive Kool-Aid and spend almost every waking hour on the internet and social media were too naive to think that Trump’s rise would turn into anything real. But it is that very medium – the internet and social media – that allowed Trump to have all of this success. His ability to be cool and connect with photos on their platforms gave him more attention than anything he ever said.

Sure, Trump is a racist, anti-immigrant and sexist individual who would only force this country to regress, but he has proven that all of that doesn’t matter. Heck, he even hypothetically discussed the ramifications of shooting somebody in Manhattan and how he would not face enough repercussions to lose support.

If this election cycle means anything it is that what you say, what you believe and how you say it, means virtually nothing. Everyone knows that Trump is not the brilliant businessman he says he is and that he had failed to offer specifics when it comes to certain policies. But no one cares. The aura of Trump, the attention grabbing solo spotlight candidate that is Donald Trump, is all that matters. For the past 30 years Americans have been fascinated with themselves. It is about “me” and becoming the greatest. For Trump, it’s about the title and the power. It’s about having more influence.

As Trump prepares to wrap up the remaining primaries in the hopes of successfully securing the nomination for president, he begins a new phase of the campaign. This phase involves discussing how candidate Hilary Clinton is old news. Trump will give speech after speech explaining how she was a terrible Secretary of State, a mediocre First Lady and a disappointing Senator. And even though none of this is really true, he will succeed because it is what people want to hear. Hillary Clinton is an establishment Democrat if there ever was one. She is business as usual, someone who has fought for herself more than for anyone else. Plus, who is excited about Hillary Clinton?

The Republican Party is perhaps more divided than it has ever been in recent memory. Given the recent popularity of the anti-Trump movement, it goes to show how key figures within the GOP are fighting to prevent an individual from becoming its very nominee. But of course the paradox continues. Most Republicans deplore Trump and his values, and yet the public support for Trump continues to persist.

It doesn’t matter that I won’t be voting for Trump. What matters is why people will be this November. Hopefully by that point people will understand that it is not just Trump but rather the people of this country that have brought this on, allowing the most self-obsessed candidate in history to play along.

Isaac Simon is a Collegian columnist and can be reached at [email protected].

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  • P

    PandaSep 30, 2016 at 6:44 pm

    It’s truly unbelievable that Trump is the Republican Party candidate. There are so many things that seem impossible around this, but this is what has happened.

    I only can have faith in the American voting public (and encourage folks in my state of NC to get out and vote) that the ideals of democracy, and an educated populace (as visioned by Jefferson), will prevail.

  • E

    earleJun 10, 2016 at 10:27 am

    Donald Trump did very well in Massachusetts; what i don’t think liberals understand is that they are detached from reality and that in the last 8 years their extreme, liberal president has systematically ruined this great nation and whatever the outcome of the election, the american people will not forget it and will not only blame liberals, I hope seek to remove their influence from our political system.

    They can start by defending colleges, financial aid and removing tenure.

  • D

    David Hunt 1990May 7, 2016 at 6:53 pm


    Isaac and others reflexively use the word “racist” to smear anyone with whom they disagree. Thus, so smeared, they can then ignore having to debate the merits of the argument. It’s the lazy approach.

    Trump is a “racist” because he says that illegal aliens are responsible for crimes in America that – if we had border control AND A WALL – they wouldn’t have committed here. He is a “racist” because he doesn’t want Islamist invaders raping our women, girls, men, and boys; they commit record crimes, are bringing in diseases (as are the invaders from the south) that have been eradicated from the US.

    But the biggest reason for bringing in all these people, then slowly… slowly… legalizing them is that the treasonous Left has a LONG GAME – to so swamp the uncooperative natives with hordes of people beholden and dependent on the Left’s programs, and will reliably vote “D”.

    If, as it is said, the biggest deception ever was that of the Devil convincing mankind that he doesn’t exist, then surely a close second is Democrats convincing “the middle” that the Democrats actually love America, The Constitution, and liberty.

  • C

    Chris PouriaMay 3, 2016 at 1:39 pm


    Besides not explaining why you believe Donald Trump to be racist (he employs thousands of minorities throughout his business holdings, anti-immigrant (Trump has had nothing but praise for those who have entered the country LEGALLY), and sexist (again, plenty of women in high paying executive positions throughout his companies), this article really went off the tracks when you came to the part on Hillary Clinton.

    “This phase involves discussing how candidate Hilary Clinton is old news. Trump will give speech after speech explaining how she was a terrible Secretary of State, a mediocre First Lady and a disappointing Senator. And even though none of this is really true, he will succeed because it is what people want to hear”

    Are you high? Honestly – what fantasy land do you come from? How can you possibly write this with a straight face?

    Hillary Clinton is not only partially responsible for the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens, but she’s played favorites in her role as Secretary of State based on who was making the biggest donations to her crooked foundation.

    Unfortunately liberals like you who are too blind to see what’s right in front of their eyes are going to be the reason this country will ultimately fail to be a serious world power within a few generations.

  • D

    David Hunt 1990Apr 29, 2016 at 2:22 pm


    Why is Bernie Sanders succeeding? Simple. Because of Antonio Gramsci’s “long march” through the cultural institutions, the Frankfurt School’s successful implementation of Critical Theory, too many young people have been denied an understanding of the evils of Socialism and have, instead, been inculcated into thinking America is uniquely evil.

    Just ask about, for example, slavery in America. Unquestionably slavery is an evil… but it was an evil that existed through virtually all of human history, and practiced by virtually every civilization until WESTERN WHITE CHRISTIAN SOCIETY decided it needed to end. Furthermore, it was not whites who sailed to Africa to kidnap blacks off the beack – no, it was whites who sailed to Africa to purchase blacks who had ALREADY BEEN ENSLAVED by their fellow blacks who did it, as they admit, purely for economic reasons (i.e., profit).

    And leave us not forget that more Europeans were taken as slaves by Arab slavers raiding across the Mediterranean Sea than blacks were taken from Africa.

    But that doesn’t fit The Narrative. And little details like these don’t help the cause of undermining America – so they get ignored.

  • A

    AlexanderApr 28, 2016 at 2:20 pm

    Almost everyone writing about the Trump phenomenon seems to miss the point. WHITE America (what is still left of it), particularly the middle class taxpayers which carry the burden of the tax extravagances of both parties, have had ENOUGH. ENOUGH of establishment politicians, enough of illegal immigration, enough of “fair trade” agreements that are anything but, enough of an ever-bloating national debt, enough of a de-fanged and weakened military threatened daily by the second-rate Russian military and the ever-growing Chinese one; enough of the continued degradation of the founding principles of this nation and the disrespect to its institutions. The list of things that many Americans have had enough of is great. Trump is far from a perfect candidate; quite the contrary, he is cartoonish and buffoonish in many ways. HOWEVER, people really believe that a wall should be built to stop illegal (not legal) immigration; that taxes should be more equitably paid (53% of poplulation pay $0 in federal tax already); that handouts and subsidies of all kinds should be severely curtailed. Most of all, that the fabric of this nation which made it so great (read: primarily a European Christian culture) not be continued to be torn absolutely to shreds in the name of progress and tolerance.

    The BIGGER story is how a man like Bernie Sanders, who is ideologically even more dangerous to America than President Obama, could have even gotten THIS FAR in the election cycle. It doesn’t really matter though. If this generation continues to subscribe to the cockamamie theories espoused by Sanders, then someone like him WILL eventually take the White House and the last vestiges of what America was will truly be gone. My only hope is that once this group of university students gets out into the workforce and faces “real life” and it’s challenges, that they will reject these silly notions, particularly as they relate to the economy.

    If nothing else, in a world with 8 billion people, there are ALWAYS going to be winners and losers. This idea that everyone in the world can be prosperous, peaceful and equal is some of the most dangerous ideology of all. Once the US descends into second-nation status, which it has been doing and will continue to, the vacuum of power will be filled by other nations with far less noble intentions. In a way, we are actually heading back to a situation more akin to the WWI era. Read up on those times…not fun. That is where we are headed as a nation….it will all be more accelerated if Bernie Sanders or Hilary Clinton becomes President.

  • L

    lolApr 28, 2016 at 2:18 pm

    he managed to give endless hours of fun from internet activist this year. show that twitter is filled with nothing but fanatics.