The term “grifter” isn’t one that I toss around as a matter of routine.
It’s a fairly new addition to the English lexicon. I found a definition that read: “Someone who swindles others.”
Grifter equals swindler. Got that? Good.
Well, I heard a contemporary political pundit the other day use the term to describe Donald John Trump, the nation’s 45th president of the United States. My first reaction was “ouch, man!”
The guy on TV didn’t articulate in precisely what context Trump is a “grifter.” I’ll make a bit of a leap right here. I am going to presume he means that the president has swindled Americans into believing the things he said he would do right away if he were elected to the very first office he ever sought.
He’d toss out the Affordable Care Act and replace it with something else; he’d negotiate a deal to secure peace in the Middle East; he would pull the United States out of the North American Free Trade Act; he would act more “presidential” and stop using Twitter as much as he did while running for the presidency; he would stay on the job at the White House and forgo golfing outings at any of his many luxurious resorts.
By my count that would be zero for five — and just on those particular pledges he made! Were there others? Sure. Let’s just stick with those for a moment. They’re pretty major things.
I haven’t (yet) mentioned the Trump University matter in which he settled with some plaintiffs who said they were, um, swindled out of money they paid for Trump’s defunct school. How about the money he said he would donate to veterans’ causes, but still hasn’t done so?
I’m not yet certain that the term “grifter” is going to become a regular part of my vocabulary. I get what it means and what it implies about the president of the United States.
It does seem to fit this individual’s modus operandi — as a businessman, TV celebrity and now as our head of state and commander in chief.