Yurugu-Trump: A Fitting Name
By, Christine Nobiss
A piece I just wrote was quoted in a recent CNN article clowning on Trump and his infinite narcissism during a “Thanksgiving” call with service members overseas. Like usual, he hijacked the conversation to describe his feats and his displeasures (with his limited vocabulary)--and so a few of the service members called him out and CNN wrote about it. My words were used to counter one of the service members whitewashed understanding of partisan politics that lead back to the first “Thanksgiving”. When I found out, my response was “Holy Fuck! Bwahahahaha! And in a Trump article!” And then I sat on it as I don’t usually like to talk about him because he’s a waste of energy. I like to spend my time working on productive ways to counter white supremacy, misogyny, ignorance--basically, fascism. However, the universe pushed a couple things my way that spurred me to engage in a Trump analysis.
First, this past week, Trump tweeted, “Mexico should move the flag waving Migrants, many of whom are stone cold criminals, back to their countries. Do it by plane, do it by bus, do it anyway you want, but they are NOT coming into the U.S.A. We will close the Border permanently if need be. Congress, fund the WALL!” Of course, this privileged, xenophobic, foulness pissed me off (like usual) BUT, I had just purchased the book, Yurugu: An African-Centered Critique of European Cultural Thought and Behavior which perfectly diagnoses his behavior. According to Dr. Marimba Ani, Yurugu “represents what Caucasian people are and their behavior and their way of thinking.”
The story as she writes it is “According to the Dogon people of Mali, in West Africa, Amma, the Creator, ordained that all created beings should be living manifestations of the fundamental universal principle of complementarity or ‘twinness.’ The principle manifests itself as the wholeness which is created when female and male pairs join in all things. Such pairing establishes equilibrium, cooperation, balance, and harmony. Amma therefore equipped each being with twin souls–both female and male–at birth. But one of these primordial placentas the male soul did not wait for the full gestation period to be born. This male being was known as Yurugu (Ogo), who arrogantly wished to compete with Amma and to create a world better than that which Amma had created. With his fragmented placenta he created Earth; but it could only be imperfect, since he was incomplete, that is, born prematurely, without his female twin-soul. Realizing that he was flawed and therefore deficient, Yurugu returned to Amma seeking his complementary female self. But Amma had given his female soul away. Yurugu forever incomplete, was doomed to perpetually search for the completeness that could never be his. The Earth, he had defiled in the act of self-creation, was now inhabited by single-souled, impure and incomplete beings like himself. Yurugu’s descendants, all eternally deficient, originated in an incestuous act, since he had procreated with his own placenta, the representation of his mother.” (http://kentakepage.com/yurugu/)
Secondly, after reading that description, I was fueled to share Dr. Ani's work because Trump is a product of a sick segment of humanity that has been cut off from the source by the devastating mind-fuck that Imperialism and Christianity has had on Greek/Roman/European society--all of which eventually made its way to these shores. Trump is but one of many sick people in this world that has a full blown case of Yurugu syndrome. Yurugu becomes an acute case where power, privilege, and fragility collide--which is why there is a widespread epidemic of Yurugu in the United States. Yurugu thinking creates decadence, apathy, ignorance and denial which is exactly how Trump got voted in. It wasn’t just the support of the wealthy elite and white supremacists that got him into office but the apathy and denial of the rest of the country as well.
It is this thinking that has also led to the current climate crisis. Colonial imperialist dominance thinking and the creation of the world’s elite class, which rests upon the dogma that god gave man dominion over earth, is described in the Yurugu story as “the Earth, he had defiled in the act of self-creation”. To be real, some form of Yurugu lives in all of us and there are other Indigenous cultures all over the world that have stories that speak to this as well; many here on Turtle Island. However, at the moment, I’m only comfortable speaking about as Dr. Ani’s assessment of an Indigenous being as it applies to “Caucasian people” because it is the only extensive work I’ve seen that gives permission for others to do so. Though as a Cree person, I’ve said for years that the Wendigo (a story told throughout the Algonquian language family) is a creature that encapsulates the greed of settler descendant society. It was once human but was created out of cannibalism and banishment and, thus, has an insatiable appetite for human flesh and torture.
With all the horror that Yurugu-Trump has inflicted and with two years left to go, I will continue to organize with the intent of spreading love, empowering Indigenous ideologies and uniting us all against fascism. For instance, even though I think CNN played a huge role in getting Trump elected--because mainstream media has failed the underprivileged since, well...forever--I am still happy they are pissing him off. The next day after that article was published, Trump tweeted, “While CNN doesn’t do great in the United States based on ratings, outside of the U.S. they have very little competition. Throughout the world, CNN has a powerful voice portraying the United States in an unfair...and false way. Something has to be done, including the possibility of the United States starting our own Worldwide Network to show the World the way we really are, GREAT!” Of course, Trump was reacting to more than that small Thanksgiving article but I am still proud that my work on Indigenous issues played a tiny role in calling out his shitty behavior and even happier that I learned a new name for him that fits--Yurugu.