Let's build a shrine to Trump

Robert Maharry

Government meetings, especially those at the local level, are infamous for being boring. Do we really care about our property tax rates (actually, yes you should), which agencies and organizations those dollars are funding (another thing you should care about) and how our lives are regulated in the communities and counties where we reside? Sadly, the all-too-often answer to these questions is no.
I have to give credit to the Grundy County supervisors, however, for always keeping things interesting. Even if some of their comments aren’t fit to print (and these tend to come from a pair of individuals, I’ll let you guess who they are), they’re informative and funny, and they talk like I’m not in the room.
The title of this column may lead you to wonder where I’m going with this or if it’s another one of my detached, cynical takes on everything, but that’s where you’re wrong. Supervisor Harlyn Riekena, a Republican, had a great idea at last week’s meeting: let’s build a woodcarving statue of Donald Trump during one of our summer festivals here in Grundy County.
While I agree with the concept, let’s take it one step further: let’s look up what the biggest current statue or replica of Trump in the world is and set out to break the record. It’s going to be the most bigly, the most beautiful shrine ever created, okay? Think of the headlines, the national news crews and the tourists rolling into Grundy County, Iowa, to examine this peculiar structure made of corncobs, or soybean-based lubricants, or black dirt (I’m just thinking out loud here).
It can be in any one of the towns, or, like Rex McElroy’s recent display that I wrote a story about, it can be in the middle of the country. I’m giving the opportunity to anyone in the county who wants their 15 minutes of fame and can build things better than I can (which is pretty much everyone), and I’ll put up the first $100 to make it happen (although, in the spirit of our president, I should just make Black Hawk or Tama County pay for it).
Between Black Dirt Days, Wellsburg Daze, Felix Grundy, the Reinbeck Fourth of July and Watermelon Days, we’ve got a whole host of summer festivals, and the shrine could even travel to each one of them so that all of our residents can experience its greatness. 
At this point, the president has more or less conquered the world—every time he tweets, it dominates the news cycle for the next two days (“covfefe” is still a thing, for some reason)—and isn’t it time that we honored him for it? We in the fake news media are often criticized for being too hard on The Donald, and while he hasn’t personally tweeted an insult at me yet (a man can dream), I fully admit that I have been mean to Mr. Trump at times.
In the wake of the recent Kathy Griffin severed head flap (never mind that Trump invited Ted Nugent to the White House), maybe it’s time for all of us to just calm down and let cooler heads prevail. What better way to start the process than building a monument to our most verbose commander-in-chief in a quiet, rural county in Iowa as a naked publicity stunt?
You may say that I’m just an idealist, a hopeless optimist. And you know what? I truly believe that we can get this done. The gridlock in Washington may have you feeling like giving up on the whole process, but what lies in front of us is an opportunity to Make Grundy County Great Again.

Build the Shrine.
On a completely unrelated note, I’ve decided that I’m going to try something from every food stand at Black Dirt Days this year and write about it. I feel it’s my duty as a journalist and a fat guy to partake on this most treacherous mission, but I have full faith in myself to accomplish it. If you wish to join me on this journey, I’ll probably be waiting in line at one of the stands. 

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