If the life we’re living in real time in the U.S. today was a fictional horror movie, it might star Vincent Price as the madman, Donald J. Trump. Washington, 2020 is like Price’s film “The House of Wax,” a 1953 classic that comes from the era to which the Trumpster would like to Make America Like Again. At the gory end of the movie, the monster’s wax face melts in a fiery salvation for mankind.

Like “Wax” or “The Blob,” — where a gelatinous mound crawls the countryside, consuming white suburbanites and growing bigger with each conquest — every really horrible horror movie requires a morally reprehensible villain, who lives only for his own survival, his own gluttony, which puts humanity at-large in grave danger. The Donald is just such a loathsome specimen.

The monster must be repugnant to the core and visually displeasing, so that whenever it appears on screen, creepy music is heard automatically, and our first instinct is to turn and look away from it. Check.

In zombie movies, or invasion of pod-creature movies, the villain appears to be a normal human, while he is a secret “superspreader,” infecting normal people, turning them into beings infected by his essence, which has an odd, alien name, like COVID-19. But we, the viewers see the dastardly scheme, and root for its destruction. Check.

But what Hollyweird writer would ever have been so clever as to disguise the monster as the POTUS — president of the United States — and make his infected wife a former nude model who snuck into the country on a fake visa and then tricked the Immigration and Naturalization Service into granting her citizenship, while smuggling her entire family into the country as well? Brilliant.

But truth is stranger than fiction, and we do have a super-spreader, Coronavirus-in-Chief occupying the highest office in the land. He decrees maddening executive orders and brandishes the papers — even blanks — with his signature on them like they are works of art. He signs peoples’ bibles and he tosses rolls of paper towels to hurricane victims like they are prized collectibles. He was impeached, but a kangaroo-court jury permitted him to remain in office, as though it was his accusers who committed his crimes.

Even before they get inoculated with his disease, his followers line up, shoulder to shoulder, just to get a glimpse of him, just to be in his presence even though he is literally shedding virus nodes like a molting beast.

He preaches: “Don’t be afraid of COVID. Don’t let it dominate your life,” even as 212,000 of his “subjects” have already succumbed to the plague he’s ignored for eight whole months. He wants to project strength and invincibility as he coughed through his latest interview and as he sweated like a pig through his debate with Democratic opponent Joe Biden. He proclaimed himself a “perfect” human specimen, in better health than he was 20 years ago. Really. He did this.

This is not rational human behavior. These are the rantings of a demonic madman who is juiced up on the psychotropic steroids he’s being administered to treat his virus.

He has even deputized by remote control, his own posse of Walmart-wannabe commandos, who march with tiki torches purchased online, who will be at the ready to launch just enough of an insurrection if and when he is trounced in the general election, come Nov. 3, so that he can declare martial law and render the expressed will of the voters to be null and void, proclaiming himself to be president for life.

In Michigan, these Vanilla-ISIS characters were practicing. Their dress rehearsal was to perform a “citizens arrest” on the duly elected governor of the state, spirit her away to some Wisconsin-wilderness hideaway, where she would be tried for “treason” and then summarily executed in accordance with the proclamation of their “court.”

You can’t make this stuff up.

Would, that this was a horror movie script.

It’s horrible, all right, but it’s too bad for us, though. Because if this real-time, 2020 drama in which we’re living was, in fact, a horror movie on the screen, it would be over by now. Instead, we’ve been writhing in pain for three years and nine months now.

The burning question of the hour: Will we see the molten face of this monster melt away before our eyes, just before the aroused citizens circle the castle and storm in to drive a proverbial wooden stake through his evil political heart?

Stay tuned.

Askia Muhammad

WPFW News Director Askia Muhammad is also a poet, and a photojournalist. He is Senior Editor for The Final Call newspaper and he writes a weekly column in The Washington Informer.

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