Last month the Supreme Court ruled that it was OK for President Donald Trump’s travel ban to exclude people who weren’t really related (not “bona fide”) to people exempted. Trump and team took that to include grandparents.
Consequently it has come about that two federal courts have since had to rule that your granny is indeed related to you.
We know that this is just a legal fiction, akin to the ruling that tomatoes are vegetables. Tomatoes are not really vegetables, they are fruits. Rices are vegetables. Similarly, grandmothers are extraterrestrials, come to Earth to steal our peanut butter and use all our hand lotion.
Seriously, does Trump know how anything in the real world works?
In an interview back in May, Trump let out the notion that he thought it was reasonable that graduates from college should pay $15 a month for health insurance, and that rate should just stay there for life. That would be fine if he thought the difference in actual cost would be made up by, oh, I don’t know, taxing all the rich people like him, but that’s not what he thinks. In fact, he apparently thinks the actual real cost of health care on average is $15 per month.
I can’t even get an annual checkfup for $180. Was Trump raised in a bubble?
It begins to make sense. Trump must not have had grandparents. His parents sprang forth from compost by spontaneous generation.
I, on the other hand, had the previously-alluded-to blue-haired, 4-foot-11, peanut-butter-eating-out-of-the-jar, hand-lotion fiend living in the house. Well, to be fair it was her house. It was also her peanut butter and her spoon, and, as she would say, “I’ll eat it any way I want, and if your mother doesn’t like it she can kiss my bony behind,“ or something to that effect. And then she’d get me my own spoon so we could take turns at it.
But that’s all beside the point. The point is, grandparents serve purposes. They have to do with how the world works. They serve to counteract your parental overlords, for instance, calling them out on their most grievous BS. Let’s say your father was like Trump’s father was, a Sith Lord who wanted you to turn to the Dark Side. Having your grandmother on hand to tell him to knock it off would have been extremely healthy for you and for the rest of us.
If you have a grandmother in the vicinity, it’s hard to grow up not knowing the price of sliced bread. Or what pennies and nickels are for. That hard sugar candies look nice but they’re best left in the tray where they lie.
The older relatives, the grand and great-grand ones, have a higher tendency than most of your younger relatives to fall ill and need health care, and being a witness to that fact of life can ground you. Maybe you might realize thereby that you are mortal, too. Maybe if you pay close attention to the details, you’d figure out what health insurance is for, in connection with such matters. You know, like that maybe it has to do with hanging on to grandma as long as possible. If not for her sake, then for the sake of all those other benefits mentioned above.
Trump, the legal president of the United States of America, wanted to say that for the purposes of interpreting the Supreme Court ruling, grandmothers were not bona fide members of families.
You know who else thought that grandmothers weren’t essential to families? Slave-owners.
Ultimately, it’s about creating a world for the sake of profit and not for the sake of people. Families without grandparents are easier to control and exploit.
The nuclear family ideal was designed to get people to spread out into the suburbs, rent more, consume more, be as interchangeable as possible and easily transferable. It was created by corporations in direct opposition to the extended family, which was regarded as an inconvenience.
It’s not a surprise that the anti-human Donald Trump would favor a continuation of the decades-long corporate war on the extended family.
I’m sure he would love to ship all the grandmothers back to grannyland or wherever they came from. At least until we can sort this whole extended family business out.
Dr. Wes Browning is a one time math professor and three times homeless. He has been involved with Real Change since he supplied the art for the first cover in November of 1994. This is his regular humor column, Adventures in Irony.
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