Brow Beat

“President Donald Trump Touts David Lynch Endorsement” Is a Real, True Headline and Not a Lazy Dystopian World-Building Background Detail

An extreme close-up of the president’s eye from his Twitter avatar.
Putting an extreme close-up of the president’s eye from his Twitter avatar under a slogan from The Handmaid’s Tale like “Under His Eye,” however, remains a lazy dystopian world-building background detail.
@realDonaldTrump/Twitter

“President Donald Trump Touts David Lynch Endorsement” are seven words that truthfully describe events that have recently happened on the planet, in the universe, and on the timeline in which we currently reside. See for yourself:

And Donald Trump and Breitbart are both more or less telling the truth in this instance, although they’re exaggerating it a little. Lynch’s statements about Donald Trump come from an interview with the Guardian, in two paragraphs that describe someone who, to be charitable about it, doesn’t seem to spend that much time thinking about politics:

Politically, meanwhile, Lynch is all over the map. He voted for Bernie Sanders in the 2016 Democratic primary and thinks—he’s not sure—he voted Libertarian in the presidential election. “I am not really a political person, but I really like the freedom to do what you want to do,” says the persecuted Californian smoker.

He is undecided about Donald Trump. “He could go down as one of the greatest presidents in history because he has disrupted the thing so much. No one is able to counter this guy in an intelligent way.” While Trump may not be doing a good job himself, Lynch thinks, he is opening up a space where other outsiders might. “Our so-called leaders can’t take the country forward, can’t get anything done. Like children, they are. Trump has shown all this.”

There’s a lot going on there! But although Lynch’s politics raise lots of fascinating questions about artists’ responsibilities to their societies, by far the most interesting fact here is that the headline “President Donald Trump Touts David Lynch Endorsement” is now permanently off the table as a world-building background headline in works of fiction, because it has really happened. Here are some of the places you are not seeing a headline reading “President Donald Trump Touts David Lynch Endorsement,” because you are seeing that headline here, in your actual life:

You’re not seeing the headline “President Donald Trump Touts David Lynch Endorsement” screaming from a rack of newsstands in a gritty 1980s “graphic novel” that uses superheroes to cast a cynical eye on the political scene and our celebrity-obsessed culture by having the Joker murder David Letterman or whatever.

You’re not seeing the headline “President Donald Trump Touts David Lynch Endorsement” at the end of a whirling newspaper montage meant to show the passage of time and the collapse of a friendship in a movie about two veteran political admen, best friends in college, who have a falling out and engage in a destructive proxy battle via increasingly ridiculous political campaigns because they can’t admit they’re in love.

You’re not seeing the headline “President Donald Trump Touts David Lynch Endorsement” in a sci-fi romance in which a scientist masters the power of time travel in hopes of being reunited with his dead wife, and the paper on his doorstep the morning after he saves her and sweeps her off to bed suggests that the couple is going to have to make some pretty tragic choices vis-à-vis individual versus collective happiness.

You’re not seeing the headline “President Donald Trump Touts David Lynch Endorsement” in the first act of a 1960s satire about consumerism called Americamart or United States of Hysteria or President Teenager in which it gradually becomes clear that the producers couldn’t afford a cameo from the off-screen celebrity president and the story of his rise and fall will be told entirely via newspapers.

You’re not seeing the headline “President Donald Trump Touts David Lynch Endorsement” in any of these places, because you’re seeing it in the real world, in which you will be spending the rest of your life. Or maybe you’re seeing it in the background of a StimVid or whatever you end up calling whatever replaces movies, and you’re watching a show called The Dumb Age or Bunker Seven’s Daily Revile-Time Ancestor Hour or something, and they used a real vintage article as a prop, and you zoomed way in on the freeze-frame and are reading this in the future, in which case, “President Donald Trump Touts David Lynch Endorsement” isn’t actually a thing that is happening in your life, although it might be a clue as to what led to whatever ghastly things have happened since. The rest of us, though? This is really happening.