Donald Trump and Madonna have again appeared on the political scene recently, and not for anything they should particularly be proud of. Let me explain.
Trump announced on Fox and Friends last week that he had an October surprise concerning President Obama’s past. It was suggested by respected pundit Douglas Kass that Trump had divorce papers signed by Michelle Obama in his possession, but Trump refuted these claims on his twitter feed.
The gist of Trump’s message is this: Trump will donate $5 million to a charity of Obama’s choice if Obama releases his passport and if he or his alma mater releases his college applications and records.
Trump went on to say that within one hour of the release of these documents, he would have the check in the hands of the charity or charities of Obama’s choosing.
At 12:15, Donald Trump issued a press release that summarized the points of the video. The response from many was overwhelmingly negative. These are some samples taken this afternoon.
Last year, Trump made a big push for Obama to reveal his long-form birth certificate, endearing himself to the “birther” community. He even mentions this victory in the video he released this afternoon, but still is very skeptical of the validity of Obama’s birth certificate. This offer from Trump is the latest in a series of efforts to prove that Obama does not meet the basic qualifications for the presidency.
But the only way that this tactic would work is if Obama felt sufficient pressure from the public. The birther movement has come and gone, and with it any energy the public might have used to pursue this issue further. Additionally, it would be too easy for Obama to claim moral outrage at being “blackmailed.” While that was not Trump’s intention, it could certainly be spun that way.
I suspect that Trump understands that this ultimatum of his will never actually work. Whether he actually believes his deal is a good one, however, he will have again gained the attention of almost everyone focused on the election this year. Attention was his aim, not an actual inquiry for the president to respond to. This particular episode was just one of many. Donald Trump did nothing original when he rode on the coattails of the election.
Madonna pulled her own stunt earlier this month when she endorsed Obama multiple times onstage during her MDNA tour; the most outlandish incident being her statement that she would personally strip if Obama was re-elected.
Even Honey Boo Boo endorsed Obama when she appeared on Jimmy Kimmel on October 16.
With all of these celebrities quite clearly exploiting the election for personal gain, the question becomes what to do with all of these people. I urge the American public to pay no attention to them. Please, for all of our sakes, do not give these people the honor of your attention. If we are to be a nation where sensationalism is beaten by truth, then we need to ignore those who so brazenly use situations like this for their own gain.