The joy of Republican primaries unfolds as their latest took place yesterday, right on their safe haven Fox, in yet another scene of Donald Trump and, to a lesser extent, his friends making fools out of themselves for everyone except their base, much to the shock of the entire world and the dismay of the intellect of a few billion people around the World. Yet again, what’s new.
Their discussions veered from building walls to stop Mexicans from entering the United States, to throwing a few million immigrants out of the country and back where they came from, along with a few pinches of homo and xenophobia before going on about how comprehensive healthcare and equality are the satanic manifestations of the coming of the anti-Christ.
Sure, such topics are interesting to discuss in times when you’re just bored out of your mind with Lebanon’s stagnant politics that you feel like talking about something that’s stimulating to a certain extent. Did you know politics can be more than just the whole “to be or not to be” mantra? For years, I had no idea.
Except yesterday, while trying to score a few points in a growingly depressing campaign, Jeb Bush – the brother of infamous previous American president George W. Bush – decided to score a few points on our behalf by flexing his muscles and pretending that he, out of all people, cared for those Christians of the East, notably Lebanese Christians, who are getting beheaded in their own country. And no, he is not smart enough to mean that in the sense of Christians not having a president and thus having their figurative political head absent.
The exchange went as follows:
Trump was going on about how Putin “going in and we can go in and everybody should go in,” presumably to Syria, Fox cut to Bush on the split screen, shaking his head, waiting to tell people how Trump was wrong. Brace yourselves for his big moment.
“Donald is wrong on this,” Bush said. “He is absolutely wrong on this. We are not going to be the world’s policeman, but we sure as heck better be the world’s leader. There’s a huge difference.”
Hurray! Big words. World’s leader and not its policeman, whatever it means, serves as a helluva good sentence for future America, don’t you think?
The audience applauded. Could Jeb Bush use this moment to turn the tides?
Of course not. He then used the next few moments to talk about Syria being a board game akin to monopoly, unless you count the few hundred thousand people dying in the process, before moving on to his magnum opus as it pertains to us: “If you’re a Christian, increasingly, in Lebanon…you’re going to be beheaded.”
Ladies and gentlemen, Lebanese Christians have something more to fear than red Starbucks cups. Someone is out there to behead us, if only I knew who. Care to enlighten me Mr. Bush?
This post won’t be about how Jeb Bush is wrong. Any person with a sane mind who is willing to go beyond what is being told on a biased, xenophobic and Islamophobic TV station will probably know that Christians are not – contrary to popular opinion – currently walking around Lebanon, like Nearly Headless Nick, with their heads propped on their shoulders.
Any person with an inkling on foreign affairs would know that Lebanon is such a big fat religious cliché it’s become not only nauseating to tell, but a huge hurdle to overcome when it comes to making things in governance work. But that’s another topic for another day. The biggest threat to Christians in Lebanon today, Mr. Bush, is probably the fact that there’s no way to get their garbage picked up.
The truly horrifying aspect of Mr. Bush’s statement is not only in its ignorance, but in its repercussions. It shows how this man, who really, really wants to be president just like his brother and father, knows next to nothing about a very important facet of ruling a country that wants to become/remain? the world’s leader as he so eloquently said. If Jeb Bush thinks Lebanese Christians are dropping dead on their country’s street, what has he left to the people of the Middle East whose suffering actually extends beyond not being able to party at SkyBar this summer or pretending that their political rights are being eaten away while they discuss the best way to buy a $700 Balmain dress (whatever that is) at H&M.
Dear Mr. Bush, my parents are not afraid of being beheaded. They’re afraid of how the long-standing repercussions of the instability your country helped incur on their region will affect their children’s stability, their job prospects, their ability to make ends meet and to live life and have it abundantly. And yes, that’s a Bible verse paraphrased in case you didn’t know.
Dear Mr. Bush, my parents are not the only ones afraid in this country. Everyone is in danger. We’re all victims of a government that has no idea how to govern. We’re all victims of your own country’s blind policies that only sees the region as “Israel and Others.” We’re all victims, Muslims and Christians of being constantly lumped as those beheading and those beheaded by those who have no idea how it is to live in a country teetering at the age of chaos.
Dear Mr. Bush, sometimes the best thing to do is to stay quiet. I suggest you do this sometimes and find other ways to beat Donald Trump than to let people think I’m writing this from beyond the grave.