With Acknowledgements to Juvenal

This article is inspired by and borrows elements of its structure and style from the First Satire of the Roman Satirist Juvenal. Anyone who wishes to learn more about Juvenal can contact Professor John Hamilton, who is currently teaching a course on Juvenal in which the author is enrolled, or could just do some research on their own.

Must I always write Horatian satire? I understand that its light tone makes it more appealing to readers, who appreciate its light and humorous tone, and I do indeed enjoy writing it, but I do not believe that it is of appropriate tone for the national state of being. Therefore, I will switch for this particular article to Juvenalian satire.

Juvenalian satire is much more serious than Horatian satire, substituting humorous mockery for scorn and ridicule. While much good Horatian satire has been written about Donald Trump, it seems to fall short. Indeed, in his many unhinged moments he makes comments and proposals that are so ridiculous that they resemble what would be a satirical depiction of any clinically sane presidential candidate. With such outrages pouring forth on an hourly basis, how can one not write Juvenalian satire?

We now have a candidate for president who, without basis, accused the sitting president of illegitimacy and continued to do so long after irrefutable evidence to the contrary was submitted. And now he wants us to lay the blame for his racially charged divorce from the facts on his rival, with completely, demonstrably false assertions that she was the first to make such claims. We now have a candidate who, in his lackluster career in real-estate, refused to rent apartments to African Americans. And now that same candidate dares to ask black voters “What have you got to lose?” by voting for him. This same candidate is a man who shamelessly advocates war crimes, ranging from the deliberate murder of noncombatants, to the use of torture, to the plunder of an allied nation’s natural resources. Finally, Trump somehow possesses less of a reputation for dishonesty than his opponent, despite the fact that that he embodies the meaning of the word mendacity. If a liar’s pants actually caught on fire, Trump would likely have used up his entire fortune on new trousers by now.

And it is not just Trump that rightly deserves the scorn of Juvenalian satire, but his supporters as well. To our immediate north, New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte claimed publicly to voters that she plans to vote for Trump, but does not endorse him. Is there no better definition of a contradiction? Then, when Donald Trump claimed that his managing of real estate and stiffing construction workers was a sacrifice comparable to that of a soldier that saved his unit from a suicide bomber at the cost of his own life, countless prominent Republicans stepped forward to condemn the statement, saying that it was morally indefensible. They then concluded that they would still vote for Trump in the Presidential election.

With conditions such as they are, it seems impossible not to write Juvenalian satire. It seems so, until one recalls one more of Trump’s many outrages, of which only a few are mentioned in this short piece. Throughout his campaign Donald Trump has shown strong support and admiration for Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia. Putin is well known for executing his those who criticize him, both political opponents and journalists. And Donald Trump praises him as a strong leader. On second thought, perhaps I shall stick to Horatian satire in the future and hope that the Crusader declines to publish this article.

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