Obama v. Trump at Yad Vashem

President Obama visited Yad Vashem, the Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem, when he was running for president in 2008. His inscription in the guestbook reads: "I am grateful to Yad Vashem and all of those responsible for this remarkable institution. At a time of great peril and promise, war and strife, we are blessed to have such a powerful reminder of man's potential for great evil, but also our capacity to rise up from tragedy and remake our world. Let our children come here, and know this history, so that they can add their voices to proclaim 'never again.' And may we remember those who perished, not only as victims, but also as individuals who hoped and loved and dreamed like us, and who have become symbols of the human spirit. Barack Obama, 23 July 2008."

Donald Trump visited on Monday. His inscription reads: "It is a great honor to be here with all of my friends—so amazing & will never forget! Donald Trump." Melania's signature appears just below his.

Spot the differences indeed. One looks like the words of a president leaving his considered thoughts on the pages of history. The other looks like the words of a B-list reality TV star quickly scratching some bullshit on a cocktail napkin for a fan.

Which is what Trump is. Unfortunately, he is also a president.

In the grand scheme of things, this isn't very significant. There are a lot bigger things about which to worry than Trump being a tacky, ineloquent, unserious dipshit in a guestbook.

Often it's these smaller distinctions that really affect me. Of course President Barack Obama would never have engaged in any of the overwhelming corruption (and possible treason) that Donald Trump has. That's so abundantly evident that it virtually doesn't even register emotionally.

But reading their words juxtaposed like that. Damn. For some reason, that's the sort of thing that really evokes in me a pointed grief about just how much we've lost.

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