The month of June marks the beginning of many celebrations the Trump family cannot comprehend, none which are so puzzling to the family White Privilege built as the graduation season, a time when the next wave of young minds celebrate their hard-earned academic achievements.
Many of the country’s top students are taking the opportunity to use their valedictorian speeches as messages of inclusion, an assurance to a terrified country that the newest wave of voters has watched incumbent politicians bow to the whims of a fascist authoritarian and are ready to take a stand against the hatred and race-baiting which landed Trump in the White House in the first place.
Some have simply chosen an opportunity to troll the populous dumb enough to elect a reality TV star to the highest office in the land.
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That can certainly be said of one Kentucky high school graduate when he tricked an entire town full of Trump supporters to cheer loudly for Trump’s primary nemesis, his predecessor Barack Obama, as reports the Courier-Journal.
“This is the part of my speech where I share some inspirational quotes I found on Google,” said Bell County High School valedictorian Ben Bowling in his speech. “‘Don’t just get involved. Fight for your seat at the table. Better yet, fight for a seat at the head of the table.’ — Donald J. Trump.”
The “economically anxious” crowd burst into an uproarious applause, according to Bowling, until he dropped the bomb on the sycophantic crowd.
“Just kidding,” Bowling confessed. “That was Barack Obama.”
The 18-year-old valedictorian said the crowd quickly went silent.
Bowling’s perfect senior prank took place in Kentucky’s Bell County, a southeastern component of the commonwealth near the Tennessee border and 153 miles south of Louisville.
Nearly 80% of the residents chose an orange-faced liar over a qualified woman in November of 2016, helping to propel America into the nightmarish hellscape otherwise known as “the present.”
“The crowd erupted in applause and before they could even finish clapping I said I was kidding and the applause quickly died,” Bowling said.
Bowling admitted to the Courier Journal that he “didn’t mean anything bad by” what he said, thinking the moment merely lighthearted and funny.
“I just thought it was a really good quote,” Bowling said. “Most people wouldn’t like it if I used it, so thought I’d use Donald Trump’s name. It is southeastern Kentucky after all.”
Whether he truly meant to troll his hometown’s appalling 2016 vote or wanted to find a gentle way to insert a quote from the last real president into his commencement address, Bowling managed to make a town which has likely spent the last week defending Roseanne Barr’s racist tweet against Valerie Jarrett applaud raucously for a black man. That’s no small feat in the Appalachian south.
Bowling graduated from Bell County High School with a 4.216 grade point average, he said. He will be attending the University of Kentucky where he plans to study biology and hopes to pursue a degree in medicine down the line.
“I’m really excited to go to college,” Bowling exclaimed. “There’s more freedom in college and there’s also way more places to eat in Lexington.”
There are also probably far fewer racists and far more people who would recognize Trump’s inability to complete a sentence, let alone say anything inspirational.
Speaking of inspiration, Bowling also offered some advice to the next wave of valedictorians assigned the daunting task of speechwriting: be courageous.
“Try not to be too nervous about it,” Bowling said. “For the most part, if you’ve been successful up to this point there’s nothing to worry.”
Plus, Donald Trump has set the bar so disastrously low for public speaking, it’s almost impossible for anyone to mess up right now. Any future valedictorian can take solace in the fact that even if they write their speech after a caffeine-ridden finals bender and come up with a product which barely resembles English, they’ll still give a better speech than the current president.
Kentucky HS valedictorian tells classmates a quote he attributes to Trump:
"Don't just get involved. Fight for your seat at the table. Better yet fight for a seat at the head of the table."
The crowd goes wild… until he says it was actually Obama's.
This kid is going places! pic.twitter.com/4h8pttL5CA
— Adam Best (@adamcbest) June 4, 2018