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Small Rituals
Author: TriSec    Date: 06/19/2021 12:33:58

Good Morning.

It's coming up on five months of the Biden Presidency. Doesn't it feel like it's been five years already? And not in a bad way?

As brief as the respite has been, every day there seems to be something else that is being un-done, or repealed, or 'returned to normal'. President Biden had a pretty routine, professional trip to Europe without many histrionics. He even met with Her Majesty, who rather famously wouldn't give his predecessor the time of day.

We even had an old-school, Cold War- style Summit Meeting with the Russians. It may not have been productive, but even President Reagan normally conducted those meetings with professionalism and diplomacy.

Herr Trump would have none of that. In fact, some of the kinder things I can say about him include "rogue", "ruffian", "uncouth", and many more pages from the thesaurus.

So it is heartening to see some of the more pleasant rituals of the office starting to make a return to the White House. President Biden, for example, may be unveiling the portrait of a predecessor later this fall.

WASHINGTON — A modern presidential tradition is poised to return to the White House — at least in part.

President Joe Biden plans to host a White House ceremony this year for the unveiling of former President Barack Obama’s official portrait, according to people familiar with the discussions. And former President Donald Trump has already begun participating in the customary process so his official portrait can eventually hang alongside his predecessors, according to an aide and others familiar with the discussions.

It’s unlikely Trump would follow the tradition of having his portrait unveiled at an East Room event hosted by his successor, given his false claims that Biden didn’t legitimately win the 2020 election, people familiar with the matter said. But a formal event with Obama and his wife, Michelle, is expected to take place at the White House — likely this fall — after coronavirus restrictions have been lifted to allow for such a large gathering, these people said.

The official Obama portrait is interesting, to say the least.


It does lead me to ponder, what might an official Trump portrait look like? The story notes that both he and the former First Lady will be sitting for official portraits. I suppose the thought of a painting of himself hanging in perpetuity in the White House, or the National Portrait gallery would be something he would be interested in. After all, that IS all about him.

So while Trump is going through the customary process of having his portrait painted, he’s not necessarily expected to embrace all aspects of the ritual.

Trump and his wife, Melania, recently began discussions with the White House Historical Association, which commissions the presidential portraits, about their pictures. That process can take up to four years. The Trumps also have been in discussions with the National Portrait Gallery since the November election to sit for portraits that will become part of the museum’s “America’s Presidents” exhibit.

“We are working with both the National Portrait Gallery and the White House Historical Association, and our progress is consistent with historical precedent,” an adviser to the former president said.

Of course, I've thought about this before. "going through the customary process" is something our former Fuhrer was never any good at. Case in point - when Obama was President, you could tell he was having fun with a lot of the rituals of the office. Trump, on the other hand - was always dour and unhappy no matter what the ocassion.

I think I witnessed that myself. Being a Disney freak, I have always imagined that one of the "funner" things a President might get to do is record that canned speech for his animatronic Hall of Presidents appearance. A lifetime ago (pre-covid), I was in Disney World for a day and a half. Sitting through the hall presentation, not only did the Trump animatronic look bogus, it also didn't sound like him one bit. I guessed that an impersonator must have recorded the speech, simply because Trump himself couldn't be bothered with such things.

I'm sure President Biden has already recorded his bit for Uncle Walt.


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