Column: What can you do about the Trumpites next door?
Oh, heck no. The Trumpites next door to our pandemic getaway, who seem as devoted to the ex-president as you can get without being Q fans, just plowed our driveway without being asked and did a great job.
How am I going to resist demands for unity in the face of this act of aggressive niceness?
Of course, on some level, I realize I owe them thanks — and, man, it really looks like the guy back-dragged the driveway like a pro — but how much thanks?
These neighbors are staunch partisans of blue lives, and there aren’t a lot of anything other than white lives in the neighborhood.
This is also kind of weird. Back in the city, people don’t sweep other people’s walkways for nothing.
Maybe it’s like what Eddie Murphy discovered in that old “Saturday Night Live” sketch “White Like Me.” He goes undercover in white makeup and finds that when white people are among their own, they pop free champagne and live the high life. As Murphy puts it: “Slowly I began to realize that when white people are alone, they give things to each other. For free.”
Hezbollah, the Shiite Islamist political party in Lebanon, also gives things away for free. The favors Hezbollah does for people in the cities Tyre and Sidon probably don’t involve snowplows, but, like other mafias, Hezbollah tends to its own — the Shiite sick, elderly and hungry. They offer protection and hospitality and win loyalty that way. And they also demand devotion to their brutal, us-versus-them anti-Sunni cause. Some of us are family, the favors say; the rest are infidels.
The same is true with Louis Farrakhan, who currently helms the Nation of Islam. While the Southern Poverty Law Center classifies him as a dangerous anti-Semite, much of his flock says he’s just a little screwy and unfailingly magnanimous. To them.
When someone helps you when you’re down, or snowed in, it’s almost impossible to regard them as a blight on the world. In fact, you’re more likely to be overwhelmed with gratitude and convinced of the person’s inherent goodness.
You might end up like the upper-middle-class family I stayed with in France as a teenager. They did not attend a citywide celebration for the 100th birthday of Charles de Gaulle, the war hero who orchestrated the liberation of his country from Nazi Germany in 1944. They did have several portraits of Philippe Pétain, Nazi collaborator, on their wall.