The Purple Heart

How is it that in recent weeks the indescribable Republican presidential candidate has been able to collect a huge fortune for his campaign that hasn’t come from the PACs and multimillionaires, but in small donations from people of modest means who are giving him the few dollars they have left over on Saturday after they finish shopping at Walmart? Certainly, for them to be poor and give money to Donald Trump, a man who has been driving through Manhattan for the past 20 years in a gold Rolls Royce, and whose most famous utterance is “You’re fired!” as he bellowed on his TV show, it must be a matter of having only the bare minimum of brain cells, or perhaps it is an extreme form of idealism. In the end, as they say, it takes all kinds of people.

This shower of money is good news for the Trump team, which has been downhearted and is in need of cheering up. The party elite are filled with depression, embarrassment, and paranoia. The Donald’s missteps are so monumental, according to The New York Times, that some fear they have to be intentional, that he is an undercover double agent who is working for the treacherous Clintons. Others are starting to suspect that The Donald, simply, is one potato short of a pound. And others are finally even asking their supporters not to vote for him, but instead to vote for that “devil,” for “the crook,” as they have been calling Hillary.

In yet another blunder, last Tuesday he received as a gift from a Marine veteran that high military medal called the Purple Heart (actually in the shape of a heart, and purple). The grateful Trump’s comment was, “I’ve always wanted to get a Purple Heart. This was much easier.” Other veterans quickly reminded him that the Purple Heart is an honor conferred exclusively on those wounded in combat, and consequently nobody with a lick of sense would want to get it, and that it’s not appropriate to have it without having shed blood for the homeland.

This has also been a chance to drag out Trump’s military record. He avoided being sent to Vietnam by requesting several college deferments. When he finished college, he got another deferment, this time medical, to recover from a bone spur in his foot, very sharp and certainly painful, but of course not very heroic.

But although he didn’t have to go into combat, The Donald, who defines himself as a fighter, is by no means a stranger to the great deeds of warfare in the Far East that so impacted his generation. In a radio interview that he gave almost 20 years ago, unearthed at this opportune moment by the website BuzzFeed, he remembered, with his usual charm and poise, that in his promiscuous youth, avoiding getting infected with a sexually transmitted disease was no easy task. “I’ve been so lucky in terms of that whole world. It is a dangerous world out there. It’s scary, like Vietnam. Sort of like the Vietnam-era. It is my personal Vietnam. I feel like a great and very brave soldier.”

It turns out that the Purple Heart they gave him is not an authentic medal, according to what was said later, but only a cheap imitation, a replica of the real ones you can buy in certain jewelry stores on Canal Street. Keeping that in mind, there’s no doubt that he deserves it.

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