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January 16, 2017

Hey, I have a cool Trump-inauguration protest idea!

It’s inauguration week. Can you feel the excitement in the air?!?

By week’s end, Donald J. Trump will take the oath of office to serve as America’s 45th president.

Some people are very excited about this. Others, like myself, are not.

Among the former is the Bikers For Trump group that plans to form “a wall of meat” to help keep the pro-Trump peace. (Can't get much more 'Merican than that phrase, can you?)

Among the latter: Thousands upon thousands of Americans who will participate in a “firestorm of protests” in Washington, D.C. and across the country.

This dichotomy is what makes America great, that whole letting-we-the-people’s-voices be heard far and wide.

Now, I won’t be physically protesting on Friday and Saturday; I’ve let my thoughts on the whole thing be heard in a litany of opinion pieces about the man who I fear won’t live up to the promises made during the campaign. (I sure hope he proves me wrong, though!)

I got to thinking about the pro- and con-Trump energy that will shift into Mount St. Helens mode in a few short days, anyway. This, because I was worried that those voices will be muted amid a cacophony of opposing screams and chants.

As crazy as the day will be, subtlety is the key to making a point. So, here’s my modest proposal: Instead of screaming into the echo-yell abyss, the anti-Trump folks should defer to violists, cellists and bassists.

Gathered together in small groups across the country – outside city halls or other landmark buildings – they should wait until high noon, when Chief Justice of the Supreme Court John Roberts swears Trump in as the new President of the United States.

When that act is done, they should pick up their instruments and play not a patriotic anthem but “Nearer, My God, To Thee.”

If that rings a bell it’s because – per undetermined myth  that was the last song the band played as the HMS Titanic (and more than 1,500 passengers) met a tragic North Atlantic Ocean end.

The Titanic, like America, was considered a formidable, powerful, indestructible entity on the world stage. But then – whether thanks to hubris, the fates or dumb bad luck – some people bravely faced their end with dignity and class in the face of irreversible damage and chaos swirling around them. Oh, you get what I mean.

Overdramatic? Oh, for sure. America still has a chance in the face of a breach and here’s hoping it’s not going to get as bad as some of us fear.

But would string-section accompaniment be an elegant way to make a point about what’s a scary moment for some? You betcha. 

So, get to organizing, string instrumentalists. We need you now more than ever.