The past few weeks of the Donald J. Trump presidency have not been defined by any surge of leadership or decisive actions but rather by a visible degradation of the president’s mental faculties and temperament. Faced with the worst crisis of his presidency, Trump has entirely failed to rise to the occasion and instead has chosen to bury himself deeper in his shoddily constructed foxhole of ego-affirming fallacy and delusions of self-victimizing conspiracy.
As the demands of the crisis put him in the public eye more and more, the impact of all the stress on his already tenuous relationship with the English language has become unavoidable. During last night’s round table at the White House, Trump inadvertently created a viral clip by claiming that in fact there are many “per capitas” and then wondered “per capita relative to what?”
Trump: "When you say per capita, there's many per capitas. Is this like per capita relative to what?"
How did this guy made it through elementary school? pic.twitter.com/Y6F7NhXD8w
— Nico COVID Haircut XW (@Nicoxw1) May 20, 2020
There is only one meaning for per capita, and it’s the meaning that lets the nation know that thanks to the failures of the Trump administration, America’s per capita COVID-19 testing ability is far beneath the level that it needs to be for us to consider fully re-opening the economy — and that his failure has led to the deaths of tens of thousands of people.
Social media had a field day with the gaffe; even Webster’s Dictionary got in on the fun:
📈We define 'per capita' as “per unit of population; by or for each person” and “equally to each individual.” https://t.co/tzdyIeYjso
— Merriam-Webster (@MerriamWebster) May 21, 2020
Donald Trump is an idiot. He doesn't have a clue what 'per capita' means. Not a clue. He embarrasses himself when he tries to bullshit his way through those questions. It doesn't work. It shows his ignorance. @realDonaldTrump https://t.co/NvOwbFAd2S
— Patty Smith (@PattySm69424257) May 21, 2020