“Late White Hope,” by Calvin Trillin of the Nation. Published on March 24, 2016.
Calvin Trillin’s article, “Late White Hope (2016),” explains that Rick Perry, the previous governor of Texas, is a poor choice for an emergency third-party candidate. Though Trillin does not adequately support his argument, he does use figurative language to support his position. Trillin’s purpose is to criticize Rick Perry to show disapproval for the GOP’s current actions. Trillin is speaking to the audience consisting of politically-interested readers as well as average news readers.
Contrary to his other poems, Trillin begins with a mock-headline (the actual events represented by it are true) to provide the reader a hint into the exigency of what is to follow. The mock-headline creates an action and response function, in which the headline purposefully allows for Trillin to respond with his position, which, of course, is negative. Shifting towards the substance of the poem; first, Trillin actively uses “they” to refer to the Republican Party, for which the media has scrutinized their intentions to bring in a third-party candidate into the election. Next, Trillin acknowledges that the GOP believes that Rick Perry has the potential to “burst The Donald’s bubble.” The reader can understand this as a result of Trillin’s exaggeration via syntax (refer to “The Donald”) and the informal phrase, “popping a person’s bubble.” Finally, Trillin crushes the GOP’s hopes of this candidate’s success by stating that Perry is not the “white knight,” a symbol which is commonly thought of a person who “comes to the rescue” in a time of trouble.
Comment to Mr. Trillin:
I’ve noticed that with your previous and most recent posts, you are focused entirely on the idea of the GOP introducing a “white knight” candidate. How do you think this will influence the minds of the voters?