Trump And “The Emperor’s New Clothes”

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In the story The Emperor’s New Clothes by Hans Christian Anderson, a couple of scoundrels, knowing the emperor’s vain fascination with his clothing, power and fame, take advantage of the emperor by promising to make him the finest wears in the world. They get away with not making him any garments by telling him that only those who are stupid, ignorant, incompetent and unfit for their position would not be able to see the beautifully made clothes. Because the emperor is afraid to be labeled these things, the emperor goes along with the lies. When the day of the parade arrives, the people are also afraid to admit what they were seeing, because they also feared being labeled. Only a child had the courage to speak out and call out that, in fact, the emperor was naked, because he was not afraid to see what was real and tell the truth. When the emperor realized by the roaring laughter of all those around him that he had been schemed and that, in fact, he was naked, he had one of his servants quickly cover him up.

So, who is Trump in this cast of characters? First of all, he is the emperor—in love with himself, greedy, confused and wanting to be adored for having enough money to wear the finest of garments, and willing to say and do anything as to not be labeled stupid, ignorant, incompetent and unfit to hold such a position. Trump is also the scoundrels, who take advantage and lie and promise something they know they can not deliver. The people are Trump’s supporters going along with the crowd because they cannot imagine that their emperor could be naked. The child represents those who do not support Trump, who see things the way they are, not the way they are told it is. The child sees the naked truth.

In some versions of this story, the emperor seeks the child’s counsel, but Trump would never do this since he knows more than the generals. So let him stand naked at the debates just to protect his ego and let’s see what his people can do to cover him up!

—Lilian Krowne

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