(229370)
Credit: Contributed

I have been feeling a bit overwhelmed by the impending Trump-Pence presidency, and the nonstop media coverage doesn’t seem to tell me much more than a few random tweets and the latest antics of a 70-year-old man who acts like a petulant child. Each time I read the news I feel my blood pressure rising because I am ingesting stories about the latest jaw-dropping comment or cabinet nomination, which is often approached with a sense of urgency that the sky is falling. The end of the Obama era is certainly going to be jarring on so many levels. We are losing one of the most intelligent and sophisticated first families ever to grace 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, and the Obama legacy is being replaced by a boy king who refers to half of the country as his enemies and is more concerned about television ratings than national security. But here is where we are in 2017.

All of these new developments give me great pause and cause for concern. However, in 2017, I am committed to not absorb the media’s need to tell me that everything is urgent and important. Just because there is a 24-hour loop pertaining to the latest DJT antic, it does not mean I need to follow it and consume myself with it. DJT is a person who believes in putting himself before everything else, including country. His behavior since the evening of Nov. 8 has not shown us otherwise. Therefore, I cannot continue to “feed the beast.” The more I make his every move a matter of urgency, the more he will continue to act out and seek attention. I think most people reading this column have interacted with a toddler once or twice who does just that. Unfortunately, the president-elect is no different. The more attention he receives, whether positive or negative, the more he acts out. He needs it. His desire for adulation and attention is a never-ending pit of greediness, and I will not contribute to it.

Indeed, it will be difficult to block him and his perpetual quest for attention, but for my own mental sanity these next two, four, or (sigh) eight years, I will not make his every move a matter that I need to read, digest, debate and/or even respond to. Just as a baby will continue to drop food on the floor just to see if its parent will pick it up, that is DJT’s quintessential need for attention. Unfortunately, that is also roughly his attention span. So, in 2017, I am going to try to commit myself to paying attention to what matters and to not becoming distracted by DJT’s tweets and nonsensical behavior. I hope I and many others can hold him to a higher standard, one that is deserving of the office of the United States presidency.

Christina Greer, Ph.D., is an associate professor at Fordham University and the author of “Black Ethnics: Race, Immigration, and the Pursuit of the American Dream.” You can find her on Twitter @Dr_CMGreer.