In recent days, we have seen students across the fruited plain suffer near psychotic breaks at the mere mention of the words “Donald Trump.”
So you can imagine the hysteria that ensued when a trio of gyrating 11-year-olds donned giant Donald Trump masks during a grade school talent show.
And by giant, I mean yuge. Yuge!
“The Dancing Donalds” drew rave reviews from students and faculty at Fiske Elementary School in Wellesley, Massachusetts.
The trio performed a wordless, two-minute routine on the morning of April 13 wearing masks they purchased from an online company called Fathead.
“It’s pop culture to them – not politics,” said Laurie Mattaliano, whose son was part of the routine. “They were not making a political statement. They just wanted to dance with a funny head.”
But an unnamed parent took offense at the dance and filed a complaint.
“I got a call from the principal that afternoon and she said there had been a negative parent reaction and they had decided to edit out all political references,” Mattaliano told me. “It seems so silly.”
The boys were given an ultimatum – either remove the Trump heads or be banned from the evening performance.
They chose to bow out – with their giant heads held high.
“What bothered me is another parent could get that charged up over the innocence of 11-year-olds,” Mattaliano told me. “This was not a political statement. I’m sure my son has heard the words Republican and Democrat but I’m pretty sure he doesn’t understand that.”
The school also removed a dance-off between kids pretending to be Trump and Marco Rubio.
“We wanted to make sure that nothing we are doing would be perceived as biased in some way,” Supt. David Lussier told the Boston Globe. “You’re not seeing Democratic candidates certainly.”
“I think it’s so important for us to be seen as nonpartisan in a highly charged election environment,” he added.
I believe the superintendent misspoke. I think he meant to say “highly charged politically correct environment.”
Mattaliano told me she does not agree with the principal’s decision, but harbors no ill will. Instead, she has decided to use the unfortunate episode as a life lesson for her young son.
“Disappointment in life is real and good,” she told me. “This is an easy disappointment to swallow. To raise a resilient adult, you have to suffer some disappointment.”
And you also have to teach them to suffer fools gladly.
I watched a video of the “Dancing Donalds” and it’s impossible to determine if the boys are honoring Trump or making fun of him. So what’s the big deal?
Has our nation become so self-absorbed and so over-sensitive that we can’t laugh at ourselves? Must we take everything so seriously?
I mean – it’s an elementary school talent show – not “Saturday Night Live.”
So far the Trump campaign has not issued an official statement on the ouster of the “Dancing Donalds.” Although, I suspect they probably think the Trump heads were not big enough.