Elections as Opera

by Dr. Ed DeVries

There’s an old saying, “The opera isn’t over until the fat lady sings.” If this election year were an opera, Donald Trump’s character would be dead already. There isn’t a single poll that shows him leading rival Joe Biden.

But in an election year weeks can seem like months and months can seem like years. So the November election is still a political “eternity” away.

Joe Biden’s strategy of staying at home, hiding behind his mask, and not saying much of anything has worked extremely well for him so far. But at some point in this political opera, his character is actually going to have to sing.

On the other hand, President Trump’s character is always on stage, although he has been and will continue to be misquoted by the press. So, as is often the case during an opera, we hear the singing but we aren’t certain of the message.

Whether you like his performance or hate it, at least the president’s character does not come across as disingenuous. I cannot say the same thing for Joe Biden’s character.

At the beginning of the opera Joe Biden ran as a traditional Democrat. By the end of the opening overture, he was running as a moderate. That’s why the characters of Senators Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker had already departed the stage in Act 1, never to return. The same can be said for the characters of former South Bend, IN mayor Peter Buttigieg and New York’s Mayor Michael Bloomburg.

Most Democrat primary voters sent a clear message that they don’t want “progressivism” or other forms of socialism and radical change. They pretty much like the script as it’s been written and the opera they are observing, they just don’t like Donald Trump, personally.

But Joe Biden’s character seems to have some serious cognition deficits. Hence his recent tweet, “We won’t just rebuild this nation – we’ll transform it.” Not the song that the moderate Democrats and swing voters in the audience were hoping to hear at this particular opera.

Change and transformation” was the song that the five Marxist characters were singing when Biden successfully pushed them off the stage. Maybe he misinterpreted the audience’s applause at their departure as an indication the audience liked the song they were singing. If so, he is sadly mistaken.

Now, as we enter Act 2 a new character comes onto the stage. A female, yes. But she’s not the “fat lady.” Her name is Senator Tammy Duckworth of Illinois. She is a disabled combat veteran and, more importantly, a woman. She would normally appeal to the audience, except for the fact that she is white. But she IS liberal and a disabled vet. Nobody can please every “Democrat.”

The script and plot to this opera are being written as it unfolds, so nobody knows the denouement for sure. But this opera fan is going to predict that Tammy will be selected as Joe Biden’s running mate fairly early in Act 2.

Despite the fact that the president’s 4th of July speeches did not mention the name of a single Confederate, the first song out of Tammy’s mouth was that the president “spent all his time talking about dead traitors” in his Mount Rushmore speech on July 3. This was her hint that she supports monument removals, probably including even the four men whose faces adorn Mount Rushmore: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abe Lincoln, and Teddy Roosevelt. Again, not a song that moderate Democrats and swing voters in the audience were hoping to hear at this opera.

As another overture begins, Bernie Sanders’s character stands outside the opera house shouting that Joe Biden — despite his recent compromises — will be “the most progressive president since FDR.” That is what Bernie believes will draw empty-headed college kids and street protestors to attend this show.

Another fact the audience is beginning to realize is that it’s not Trump or his supporters who are screaming to defund or eliminate the police. And they are also starting to recognize that it’s not “right-wing extremists” who are  toppling statues and destroying historical monuments. No, it’s a violent left-wing mob of Biden supporters doing those things.

Does the audience like America? Or do they prefer the left-wing, radical, city- burning and destructive rioting that they entered the opera house to escape?  With every monument that’s desecrated, with every vow to “transform” America,  and every time someone is fired for an innocuous comment, the President’s prospects improve.

Maybe the president’s character isn’t the villain after all? If Donald Trump can pitch his voice and hit his notes more clearly, perhaps his song will become more appealing as this opera drags on?

And let’s not forget the coming duets in the form of debates. Joe Biden’s character will certainly have to start singing by then, and he will be forced to come out of his basement and out from behind his mask. Then maybe the audience will see what the face of the villain actually looks like? As I said at the beginning, the mid-show reviews appear to be thumbs down for the President, but the audience hasn’t exactly fallen in love with Joe Biden.

These are not normal times. When this opera began, not a person in the audience could have predicted the pandemic plot-twist, nor the scene where George Floyd lay dying on the street whispering “I can’t breathe.” As I said before, the script is not predetermined, and many of the characters are basically making it up as they go along.

And this opera, like most all others, will drag on. And its audience, like all opera audiences, will regret that they ever bought their damned tickets. Some of us already feel that way. There is still no telling how this is going to end because the fat lady has yet to sing.


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