Eva Bradley: Race turned into reality TV

By Eva Bradley

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Watching Donald Trump campaigning  is like watching a car crash - it's impossible to turn away.
Watching Donald Trump campaigning is like watching a car crash - it's impossible to turn away.

The trouble with Americans is that they produce and consume so much reality TV that they can no longer tell when the reality show ends and real life begins.

The current campaign for party nominations in the presidential primaries is so packed with outrageous one-liners that it makes you wonder not just about the dignity of the world's most powerful nation, but their sanity as well.

Granted, everyone else in the race except for Donald Trump is probably wondering the same thing, but the fact he continues to steamroll his way towards victory says more about what Americans really think and believe than any constitution or bill of rights.

I've always found the US election process drawn-out, confusing and mostly just boring.

Which is as it should be, since it's about politics and all the important but often tedious issues that come with deciding on the future direction of the world's most powerful nation.

But lately the process has become so compelling and entertaining that I find myself eagerly awaiting the next instalment.

Because that's what the race for presidency has become ... a reality show delivered in bite-sized, often offensive and always highly disturbing sound bites that seem to horrify and attract support in equal measure.

Watching Donald Trump on his march towards the White House is like watching a car crash - it's impossible to turn away.

For quite a long time, he was just the campaign court jester offering some lightweight, right-wing bluster out of left field. You can't take a candidate who talks about the hotness of "his" women and the length of his genitalia seriously, can you? According to what is fast becoming a majority of American Republicans, you can. And they are.

With more than 10 million votes so far, Trump is set to push George W Bush off his plinth as the most supported candidate in Republican presidential primaries.

All of a sudden his derogatory, racist and sexist remarks are not quite as entertaining as they once were.

If those of you who thought what happened in American politics didn't really matter Downunder, consider the implications of the world's greatest military might and nuclear arsenal being in the direct control of a man who says stuff like this: "It's freezing and snowing in New York - we need global warming!"; "The beauty of me is that I'm very rich"; "I've said if Ivanka weren't my daughter, perhaps I'd be dating her."

And most concerning of all for the prospects of international peace and diplomacy: "The point is you can never be too greedy."

I know the US has always harboured a dark, dirty underbelly of redneck dissension, but it's only now as votes are cast that we are beginning to see the extent of this, and the potential for global annihilation should Trump become top dog (no offence to dogs intended).

I used to think that global warming and sea-level rises would be the death of us. Now I'm starting to think it could be an ageing, tanned capitalist sporting orange hair plugs.

There's not much Donald Trump has ever said that I agree with even slightly, except for this quote which I support wholeheartedly:

"One of the key problems today is that politics is such a disgrace. Good people don't go into government."

I have a feeling that if Trump makes it into office, his views on this will change dramatically, but the reality will be not just more disgrace, but total disaster.

- Eva Bradley is a photographer and columnist.

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