The Best Reality Show of All Time.

It’s gauche to gush. The mature Westerner should be cool and controlled even when happy. I don’t know who made up this rule, but it seems that the more civilized we get, the less emotion we’re supposed to show. 

And here comes Donald Trump to burst that image. He doesn’t give two figs if you think he’s gauche. Give him a microphone and he talks about his money (lots and lots of it) and his businesses (lots and lots of them) and his relationships with foreign leaders (I love the Chinese). If there’s one thing he doesn’t have it’s cool control. That’s where the rubber meets the road as far as the average American is concerned. Mr or Ms Smith is tired of leaders who make them fall asleep, make them feel that nothing is going to change – ever. 

I’ve heard rational people say that they find Trump refreshing, and that’s made me rethink my scorn for his ideas. Like building a wall between Mexico and the US, paid for by the Mexicans. Or shipping all 11 ½ million undocumented immigrants to the border with Mexico. What, I used to ask myself, is the person cheering for The Donald thinking? Do they really think these things are possible?

The other Republican contenders for the nomination have been attacking his conservative credentials. He used to be a Democrat, he says, until he found salvation. Not good enough, Jeb Bush says. You’re a turncoat, not the real thing. He’s been married four times, other conservatives say. Don’t you all see that?

I now realize that neither my questions nor the question about Trump’s conservatism matter to the cheering crowds. They’re not really listening to the actual words. Instead, they’re relishing listening to an uncool person run for the top leadership position in the world. They roar with laughter at his jokes, even the abusive ones, love that he is politically incorrect and doesn’t care, and applaud his outlandish ideas. 

He has spirit, he has a loud voice, and he’s funny. His emotional outbursts are more Latino than those of the people he wants to deport. And all of those who’ve been fed reality shows where participants boast about themselves and hurl insults at others are now seeing that experience translated to the presidential election. Here Trump is no longer just a host. He’s the only attraction in the best reality show of all time.