Friday, October 14, 2016

Why Donald Gropes: "Alpha Male" Trump Does Liberace

Is there is something queer about Donald Trump's exhibitionist "locker room banter" and the widespread allegations of nonconsensual sexual touching and voyeurism? No, I'm not suggesting that Trump is a closeted homosexual and his hetero-predatory antics are a beard. He may be. Who knows? Who cares? 

Two of Donald J. Trump's mentors were Roy Cohn and Liberace. Both men went to their graves closeted even though 'everybody knew'. My question, though, is about how the over-the-top womanizer image screens and countermands mannerisms and affectations that otherwise might alarm his homophobic constituency. It remains a liability for a conservative politician to be gay or to be perceived as being gay. Trump loudly advertises his testosterone-fueled impulses as testament that he couldn't possibly be... :
In fact, I took her out furniture shopping. She wanted to get some furniture. I said, “I’ll show you where they have some nice furniture.” I moved on her like a bitch, but I couldn’t get there.
Donald J. Trump studied at Liberace U. His mother was a YUGE fan of the glitzy-kitsch pianist. When Liberace performed a 17-day engagement at Radio City Music Hall in 1985, Trump provided him a million-dollar suite in Trump Tower rent free in exchange for plugs during the concerts. Trump and Liberace shared a passion for professional wrestling. Most of all, Trump admired and emulated Liberace's relentless self-promotion and showmanship.

Noel Hodson, blogging at Future Fact & Fiction, reflected on his impressions of Trump from the first presidential debate with Hillary Clinton:
How does this man, with his ridiculous blonde toupee, seduce and command a large following of fellow Americans? 
Donald has learned that words do not matter when communicating with the great American public. He writhes, he agonises, he weeps, he bullies, he gossips, he struts, he flounces, he flicks his peroxide wig, he flaunts his sparkly, shiny wealth, he stabs,  he needles, he spurns the establishment, he cries all the way to the bank, he preens, he twinkles and sympathises and empathises with the mute, impoverished, ignored masses. He seduces millions with his empty, meaningless banter and antics.
The gestures that most struck me were his peculiar hand and finger movements which he employs to emphasise a point when he runs out of words and simply repeats whatever slogan enters his mind at that moment, while cricking his head sideways and grotesquely puckering his lips. When caught out in debate or challenged personally, Trump goes through these gyrations and responds very waspishly. ...there was an older memory that was nudging through from the past - particularly when Donald turned his grimace into a lip-smacking winning smile for the cameras. In the 1950's my mother liked to watch Liberace on our little black & white TV and I sometimes watched that King (or Queen) of showbiz performers, draped in white furs, jewels and sequins, crooning and grinning at us from Behind the Candelabra.
He was doing Liberace.
When you think about it, Donald Trump is really the Republican Party’s answer to Liberace. 
The furnishings in his apartment; his 1950s DA hairdo; the hand motions with the tip of his index finger attached to the tip of his thumb; the bevy of "fashionable" women he hangs around with; he is in the “fashion” business; his strange outfits with the tie hanging down to his crotch; his exclamations like "disgusting" and “disgraceful!!”; he sends off “tweets” every morning from his “twitter” account; his tiny hands.

If Donald Trump is really the honest politician he says he is, he would call a press conference seated at a piano with a candelabra on it and spill the beans. 
H. Wayne Judge, Glens Falls


AP said...

This is straight-up homophobic hate speech.

The psychological phenomenon you're relying on is real but the terms you use to describe it are completely unacceptable and its application in this case very implausible. Toxic masculinity used to cover up hidden homosexuality is a public display for the benefit of other men; assaulting women in private and then denying it offers no gain.

This is just another form of denial. Anything rather than admit that a lot of men talk and act like Trump and very few other men confront them about it. Or believe their victims when they complain about it.

Sandwichman said...

AP, no, you are wrong. I am not suggesting that DJT is a closeted gay man. I am suggesting that he has adopted mannerisms that he compensates for by his wanton displays of predatory misogyny.

When I wrote this post I was hyper aware of the potential appearance of homophobia. I realized there it would be impossible to avoid somebody construing what I am saying as homophobic. There is a point at which sensitivity shades over into self-censorship. I would prefer to err on the side of open and free discussion.

Trump's alleged assaults were no more "in private" than is his braggadocio "locker room talk." Privacy is not a quantitative fact. It is a social agreement. Two strangers, alone on a subway platform. are not "in private."

Sandwichman said...

Oh, and AP as for it being "hate speech," go fuck yourself you Rapepublican troll.

AP said...

Rapepublican troll?

I've accused you of homophobic hate speech and discussed toxic masculinity, homophobic & misogynistic bluster as a cover for homosexuality, pointed out that many men talk and act like Trump and that most other men are either their cheerleaders or gutless bystanders, and then have the hypocrisy to routinely disbelieve women when they commplain about it.

And you call me a Rapepublican troll?

You need to have a word with that overly-defensive ego of yours. It's embarrassing you.

Sandwichman said...

AP, look at your first sentence. I play tit for tat.

If you want to engage me in a respectful argument about whether what I wrote was objectively homophobic, don't go labelling it "straight-out hate speech."

If you want to attack my character and motives, I will respond in kind.

run75441 said...


Having been old enough to have been around when Liberace was on the "round" screen in black and white, the mannerisms are clearly there. Just showmanship, why???