On Friday, I was on my way home from working a 10-hour day, trying to squeeze in some last minute e-mails. I exit my normal subway stop on Bedford Ave in Brooklyn, NY and was greeted by what has to be the most creative panhandling sign ever...
"Give me a dollar or I will vote for Trump"
The young bro holding it looked straight out of a Grateful Dead parking lot, and was loving every second. Pretty women, sailors, firemen and Williamsburg hipsters were giving him plenty of attention, and CASH!!!!
When I snapped his photo, he told me this was the best gig he'd ever had! People were throwing dollars at him and high fiving. Then a passing sailor - in town for Fleet Week - jumped right in the frame.
I was blown away by how stoked everyone was for this kid and his sign... I mean, we live in NYC. We see homemade signs all of the time. But this guy had an audience. I asked if he was standing there long and he answered by pulling out two huge bundles of cash, like a gansta rapper or old time mobster.
I left the corner thinking how crazy it all is. Donald Trump could be our next President, and people will throw wads of bills at a guy just for making a joke at his expense.
And are all of those people posing for photos and kicking down dollars actually voting themselves? Are they learning about the issues and ready to make informed choices at the polls? Or are they just having a big old laugh? Has the entire democratic process literally become a joke?
When I was this dude's age, I was going to Phish shows working my ass off in parking lots. I might not have been doing the 9 to 5 thing, but at least I sold shitty burritos. Now, instead of creating products that have value, you can hustle cash just by tapping into America's deeply-divided political psyche.
Well, whether you are for Trump of against him, it looks like he is already creating jobs.
HeadCount is a non-partisan organization dedicated to registering voters and inspiring democratic participation through the power of music. We do not support any candidate, political party or platform.