One day in seventh grade I peed in a urinal and someone I’ll call Miles came up behind me and jump-kicked me as his friends looked on and laughed. I fell on the floor and peed on myself and they all just laughed and called me a loser.
A couple minutes later I had picked myself up and pulled up my pants. I was so angry I wasn’t thinking or behaving rationally or thinking about consequences. I ran out of the bathroom and found Miles halfway down the hallway, standing with the same friends from the bathroom. I marched up to him and threw what I think was my first-ever real punch. I missed his face and connected with his shoulder.
His face turned to rage and he started swinging wildly. I ran backward, by some miracle dodging every one of his punches. So he stopped and just screamed at me something like “You’re a disgrace! You just walked up and punched me for no reason, just because you thought it was funny! That is truly unbelievable. Only a truly depraved individual could do something like that. Did you all see what he just did? He just punched me out of the blue, for no reason. That’s insane, like you don’t have a shred of moral decency and just think hurting others is funny. It’s an embarrassment. Just randomly hitting people is not funny and you should be ashamed of yourself!”
His friends all immediately backed him up, repeating his condemnation of me to all the other onlookers. Miles shouted so quickly and so aggressively and I was so blindsided by his strategy and so emotionally distraught that I just couldn’t respond. I just stood there crying as everyone shook their head and judged me.
And I never could tell my side of the story. Everyone there, to this day, probably believes my punch was completely unprovoked.
That was possibly the most painful event of my childhood. It wasn’t the physical violence that made it awful. It was the manipulation of moral values and truth. Like right and wrong no longer mattered, like our moral fabric was crumbling and everyone thought it was funny.
But as awful as it was, it taught me a valuable lesson: some people genuinely don’t care about right and wrong. Often times these are the people who talk the most about it. There are people who use moral values, not as tools to help them be better people or support their community, but as a game they can manipulate to get what they want.
I see this from all political backgrounds, but it’s usually far more subtle than what I experienced that day in middle school. People often don’t know they are doing it, but in this case it was completely deliberate. He knowingly did something so awful that I couldn’t contain my emotion, driving me to do something irrational, which he used against me to torment me even more and to justify further bullying down the road.
After this, life steadily got better for me until 2020, each and every year being better than the last. I thought I would never again feel like I did that day. I thought I would never again hate anyone like I did Miles. I thought my faith in humanity would never be tested like that again.
I was wrong.
I see all this happening again, like this event from my childhood is a metaphor for everything Trump has done to this nation. And just like me throwing one punch and then standing there crying, the liberals fell right into his trap. We either ignored the problem or threw irrational fits of rage. Over and over, Trump and his supporters do the most horrible, outrageous things, then they all instantly come together to lie, cheat, manipulate, belittle, intimidate and otherwise use whatever they possibly can to win in a hate-driven orgy of self-indulgence at the expense of our great nation’s moral, legal, and ethical integrity. And most of them think it’s funny.
“Make liberals cry again.” That’s their slogan. Like the common bully, the suffering of their fellow Americans is a joke to the average Trump supporter.