Celia Rivenbark is a columnist, born and raised in North Carolina. She is also a best selling author. This is this week’s oeuvre.
Let’s just put aside the obvious nut job rumors like how Hillary Clinton has a body double, how she has murdered at least two people in her decades-long presidential power grab and how she rattles a necklace of bleached chicken bones every full moon to cast a spell on her enemies.
I know that’s the sort of stuff that makes Sean Hannity giddy but, really, most of us have better sense than that.
Let’s concentrate, instead, on the now famous “basket of deplorables” which, the first time I heard it, sounded like the least popular floral arrangement ever.
“Hmmmm. I was going to go for the Sunlit Meadows or the Precious Hearts bouquet but, what’s this? The Basket of Deplorables? That sounds pretty intriguing. What’s in it?”
“Well, there’s asters, carnations, baby’s breath and a bit of misogyny and homophobia.”
“Really? No daisies? And at that price point I’d expect at least a sprinkle of Islamophobia and anti-Semitism.”
“We can always add some of those in. They have been very popular lately.”
Yes! The Basket of Deplorables available for only $49.99 at your local florist.
The phrase, which I predict will become part of the political lexicon like “gate” did, is captivating.
One wonders where HRC got this notion of a basket of deplorables. Was it a slip up? Did she mean to say something else? Baskets are such gentle things: adorned with flowers and affixed to the front of a little girl’s first bike. Baskets are usually filled with knitting supplies or calendar kittens or, my personal favorite, onion rings. Deplorables? Not so much.
As a longtime lover of linguistics (also alliteration), I have to say the phrase has resonated with me and I’m going to use it as often as possible, often completely out of context. I can’t stop, won’t stop saying it.
Unfortunately, as I embrace the basket of deplorables, HRC is walking back the phrase even as I write this. She now says she wishes she hadn’t said “half” of Trump’s supporters can be found in this basket, for instance.
Oh, woman up, Hills! Own the basket! Because, the truth is, you were right the first time. Half of Trump’s supporters, the ones whom I try very hard to understand and respect, will vote for him while holding their noses because they honestly believe his policies will result in less government intrusion. They are Libertarians at heart but they can’t bring themselves to vote for the guy who acted like he thought Aleppo was one of the Marx Brothers. So they vote for Trump out of frustration with the Washington establishment.
The other half? Yep, they live in the basket of deplorables. They vilify others on the basis of skin color, religion, sex, otherness. No amount of flowers can beautify this basket. It’s ugly and dark inside, the lid clamped shut to prevent daylight and decency from streaming in.
If Trump wins, we’ll be going you know where in this handbasket.