The weekend of the November 3 US election brought the world a new and pleasurable experience, despite the pandemic: the sound of silence from the Trump White House.
Donald Trump, decisively defeated by Joe Biden (who swung Georgia and reclaimed the mid-West and Pennsylvania), was out of sight – of the nation and the world.
He was also blissfully quiet. Oh, he continued to tweet away maniacally as always, but hardly anyone was reporting deeply and obsessively on what he said.
Instead of the media frenzy of the past five years over every opinion expressed by Mr Trump, news outlets simply concentrated on the facts of what he said. The facts were clear and they were reduced to a bald, brief, generic statement: “Mr Trump continues to make unsubstantiated claims that he won.”
That’s it. No more, no less.
With the volume turned down on Mr Trump’s Twitter fulminations (someone I know calls them “brain farts”) and with the man himself hardly ever appearing in public and remaining blessedly silent when he did, the world became a less noisy and angry place.
Truly, there was suddenly a moment to think, to actually ‘see’ other people (of whatever political stripe), to hear civility in political discourse from many many people (including, incidentally Georgia’s elected Republican secretary of state for elections Brad Raffensperger and crucially, Mr Biden).
It was a good run-up to American Thanksgiving.
Then, Mr Trump decided, once again, to speak, to reporters, America and the world.
The good thing is he won’t have the bully pulpit, nor the biggest microphone in the world for longer than 54 days.
There is much to be thankful for.