Confederacy of Dunces

Trump, Charlottesville, and the bathroom bill.

By Susan Bankston

Let me just start off this month by saying that I personally and strongly endorse the president going to war with North Korea. Not our military, of course—just the president.

I feel dead-solid certain that someone here in Texas will loan Trump a gun. And if you think about it, borrowing Buddy and Dwayne’s bass boat for a quick trip to invade North Korea may be the safest way for Trump to get away from this How-I-Screwed-Up-the-Whole-Damn-Presidency thing.

Honey, I’m not saying Trump is nuts. I’m just saying he has really bad luck when it comes to thinking.

When the White-and-Not-Too-Bright Confederate Glee Club decided to fight the removal of a Robert E. Lee monument in Virginia, Trump immediately denounced “many sides” of the conflict. Well, there definitely were two sides: the side that was slamming a car into the crowd, and the equally vicious side getting hit by that car while standing there not doing a damn thing.

Trump’s press conference two days later was a damn goat rodeo on mescaline. He was so insane that David Duke, America’s white-supremacist-in-chief, praised the president’s performance.

I have an idea. Instead of having to put up with protests over all these Civil War monuments, let’s just declare attorney general Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III a living memorial statue to the Confederacy. Think about it: if we were to replace him with any dead Civil War general we dig up, it’d be months before anyone noticed the difference.

Look, I have no problem with skinheads and other assorted idiots waving the Confederate flag around, as long they use the most recent one used by the Confederacy: a white flag. You’d think people wouldn’t be fluffy-proud to cheer the side that surrendered, but when you’re a loser anyway, I guess you ain’t got nothing to…uh…you know, lose. (Oh crap, I just realized that the skinheads just won the triple crown of losing.)

Now we gotta talk about the bathroom bill in the Texas Legislature. When polls started showing that the majority of Texans oppose birth-gender-only bathrooms, and 63 percent of people who call themselves political independents have a just-let-my-people-pee-dammit attitude, Republicans dropped that bill like they were holding a hot Cadillac bumper on a Pasadena parking lot in August. Thank you, Sweet Jesus. So now, Lt. Governor Dan Patrick is just going to have to find another way to look into your pants. And if that’s your thing, that’s really fine with me. I’m sure he’d be grateful to have that opportunity, but it ain’t my thing.

I want you to think about something else: you would think that the most conservative folks in America would be the military. But when Trump wanted transgender people out of the military, he faced some military leaders who are tougher than a five-dollar steak. The secretary of the Navy, Richard V. Spencer, said that while he is duty-bound to follow presidential orders, he believes that any—any!—patriot should be able to serve in the military. The Coast Guard commandant, Admiral Paul Zukunft, also offered support for transgender members of his service. I’ll salute that.

We heard recently that Trump is given a folder twice a day with flattering news articles and letters, along with photos of him “looking powerful.” It’s his Go-Go-Ego folder.

Through the miracle of modern big-time journalism, I was given a peek inside one of those folders. Here’s what I discovered in there:

• Notification that the Ladies’ International Swedish Hockey Team just voted him as “The Man They’d Most Like to Knuggle With.” (King Joffrey came in a very close second.) 

• A Ziggy Toon, because everybody loves Ziggy. (Yes, they did have to explain this to Trump.)

• Reminder scribbled on a Post-it note that the Nazis have their good points, too.

A love poem from Rick Perry written in iambic pentameter (added to the folder after Rick finally thought of a word that rhymes with Trump that doesn’t make him giggle).

As summer winds down, I want to share a story with you that, once again, reminds us that Florida outranks even Texas on the hillbilly scale. This is an honest-to-gosh true story, and you can look it up on the Google machine if you don’t believe me.

An Orlando couple decided to head out to the Central Florida Fairgrounds to grill something delectable to eat. After they had finished grilling and put their propane barbecue grill back in their rented red Kia Sorrento to head home, everything was hunky-dory until the wife lit up a cigarette.

It turns out that both the propane tank and the grill had been left on. They came damn-close to orbital speed, and had it not been for the highway pole that stopped the vehicle, it would have become part of the solar eclipse. The roof almost flew off of the Kia, and all the windows blew out.

Luckily, they escaped with non-life-threatening injuries, but nobody knows why. As you would expect, the husband was promptly arrested for having an outstanding warrant from a fleeing-and-eluding-arrest charge unrelated to this incident. And then he tried to flee from this incident.

I love yew, Florida. You take the gold over Texas in the redneck Olympics.

It’s back-to-school time, so get out your pencil box and superhero lunch kit to make all the other kids jealous. •

This article appears in the September issue of OutSmart Magazine. 


Susan Bankston

Susan Bankston lives in Richmond, Texas, where she writes about her hairdresser at The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc., at
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