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Anyone, like me, who watches every Rally and follows the great President Trump will know that there has been much speculation as to why he has been referring to ‘ Gone with the Wind “ of late. Is it simply because it was from an era when Hollywood was not Hollyweird or is there something more to this?

With President Trump, one never knows…. So let’s have a look at “ Gone with the Wind “ and see what we can come up with.

In 1936, Margaret Mitchell wrote her one and only novel and it became one of the most recognised and critically acclaimed novels of its’ time. Set in and around 1864, against the rather privileged background of pre civil War Atlanta, it portrays an indulged, spoilt brat of a woman named Scarlett who “ though not beautiful “ saw men “ caught by her charm. “ As the Civil War escalates and Sherman marches to the sea, Scarlett’s wealth, position and youthful fancies are stripped away and she finds herself fighting for survival.

The main characters are ( of course ) Scarlett – the least likeable heroine of any book I have ever read – Ashley – the honourable man ( who, quite frankly I have always found quite irritating because he was such a milk sop) Rhett Butler – the handsome, reckless hero who sees Scarlett for the shrew she is and is determined to tame her and make her his – and then the calm and gentle Melanie who is so kind and nice that, despite my desire for her to be less like Mother Theresa and more like Ridley in “ Alien “ , I accepted as the epitome of the quiet American hero. 

And who could forget Mammy? The voice of reason and commonsense?

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The phrase “ Gone with the Wind “ comes from a poem written long before Christ was born and is accepted to mean something that is gone and cannot come back. Margaret Mitchell chose her title well, because the Civil War did in fact change America forever… and, I might add, in my opinion, for the better.

While many school children may have been taught that the North were “ the goodies “ and the South “ the baddies “ it must be said that many in the South hated slavery and helped the slaves to escape through the underground railroad.

Many northerners profited from slavery so there was not a consensus based on strictly geographical lines.

Abraham Lincoln fought hard to abolish slavery. Coming to power in 1861, he had the challenging job of uniting a disunited States of America.

He was a tall man, 6 foot 4 inches - imagine what a figure he must have cut in his top hat…. A giant of a man in all respects.

Without turning this into an American history lesson, we have many similarities today with Trump’s presidency.

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We have a petulant group of Americans that believe they can stamp their feet and receive their demands. We call this America “ leftie luvvies “. It is not beautiful, but it weaves its’ charm and woos people to come under its’ spell.

It took losing everything for Scarlett to realise that only hard work and true grit could bring success.

We have the Ashley Wilkes of this world – idealists of the world.

We have rogue Rhett Butler who is prepared to fight for money and essentially has no moral scruples… at the end of the day, Rhett was about Rhett. About money. Much like our Politicians, many businessmen and women and others who would sell their soul if there was a buck in it.

In the middle of this, we have the quiet, gentle “ mother figure “, Melanie, who soothes, forgives and gently goes about her life without hatred or malice.

Maybe I was too harsh on her all those years ago?

She is, after all, the quiet American who stays below the radar and is truly the bedrock of the Nation.

melanie

The American Civil War was fought on the back on slavery, money and power.

Abraham Lincoln used his wisdom and skill to navigate a sea of disunity, aggression and division.

A tall man, a good man and a brave man who dared to tackle the most divisive issue of his time:

Inequality.

And he succeeded.

We now have another tall man, a good man and a brave man who is daring to tackle the most divisive issue of OUR time:

Inequality.

He is succeeding.

But the enemies he faces are much like those that Lincoln faced: the people who have yet to lose everything; the traditionalists who are stuck in time and the mercenaries who will sell their soul for money.

Spoiled teenagers, ideological do gooders, mercenary money grabbers and carpet baggers....... and the quiet Americans.

We need the stabilising influence of the quiet Americans – the Melanie’s of this world.

Maybe that is why Trump refers to this novel? He is looking after the quiet people.

The quiet Americans. And the Mammy's as well.

 Because, without President Trump, our past and future will be Gone with the Wind. Only in the present can we repair our world and way of life. 

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