Donald Trump has created a national crisis in America and it has to do with parents and their children: How to respond with reason when your child brings up Donald Trump. In light of this “national crisis”, Steve Almond of the Boston Globe jotted down some steps on how to talk to your child about Good ol’ Trump – and it’s wonderful. Separated under six headings, the tongue-in-cheek sarcasm is a delightful change to the usual kak. I chose the best lines from each:
1. Confront the Inevitable
For many, the natural impulse will be to distract your little one from this new preoccupation by dropping a large ceramic bowl on the floor, or yelling “Hey look—it’s Han Solo, and he just parked the Millennium Falcon right outside our house!”
2. Don’t Panic
Young children react more to your attitude than your words. The first time your daughter one approaches you to ask about Donald Trump, simply take a few deep breaths and, if necessary, half a valium. Next, walk to the refrigerator and pretend to be looking for the fresh ginger root while you pour some wine into a coffee mug. Drink the wine and refill your mug. Finally, smile and ask the child what he or she has heard.
3. Listen Without Reacting
Your first temptation will be repudiate these statements and launch into an semi-coherent lecture about Richard Hofstadter’s “The Paranoid Style in American Politics.” Instead, nonchalantly tell your six-year-old that you will look into these claims. Then go into your room with your mug of wine and weep silently.
4. Don’t Vilify Donald Trump . . . Even If Your Child Supports Him
Remember that your child has not yet learned to draw a clear line between fantasy and reality. She may not understand the difference between the monsters encountered in fairytales and the bloated, orange-faced creature bellowing polls numbers at her on the television. For this reason, it is vital that you let her express her fears and fantasies.
5. Answer Questions Using Simple, Direct Language
Q: Does Donald Trump own all the money in the world?
Q: Why does Donald Trump keep kissing his daughter on the lips?
A: That is his wife.
Q: Zach’s mom says they are moving to Nova Scotia if Donald Trump is elected. Are we?
A: Your mother and I will probably argue about this and decide, in the end, not to.
Q: Can Donald Trump really build a wall around America?
A: Not by himself.
Q: Donald Trump said all Mexicans are rapists. What’s a rapist?
A: Ask your mother.
6. Offer Realism and Reassurance
Instead, reassure your child that whether or not Donald Trump is elected president, or merely leverages his political campaign to grow his brand, you will always love and protect them. Then stare deeply into the eyes of your little one and remind them that nothing lasts forever, not even Donald Trump.
Oh goodness. I wonder if any parents will take this seriously? Probably. Now we just need one for children who need to talk to their parents about supporting Trump.
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