Actually, not so much.
It's actually a non-census year head count of the vision and/or hearing impaired.
Suzanne Barakat, the sister of a Muslim student killed alongside his wife and sister-in-law last year in an attack in North Carolina, challenged Donald J. Trump to meet with her after a speech in which he spoke approvingly of killing Islamic terrorists with bullets dipped in the blood of pigs.
Dr. Barakat, 28, a physician in San Francisco, said the comments and other anti-Muslim rhetoric from Mr. Trump, including a proposal to ban Muslims from entering the country, have contributed to an atmosphere of intolerance that she fears could have deadly consequences.
“It allows for the Average Joe to see Muslims the way Craig Hicks saw my brother and his wife of six weeks and her sister,” she said, referring to the man who killed her relatives last February. “As ‘The Other,’ as subhuman, because of their faith.”
Mr. Trump has not responded to Dr. Barakat’s invitation for a face-to-face meeting, she said. It was delivered on Saturday via Twitter, a platform the Republican presidential candidate has frequently used to telegraph his views and to attack people, places and things that he dislikes.
“Trump speaks as if he is the authority on American Muslims,” said Dr. Barakat. “Well, if you mean it then call me up and meet with me and let’s have a chat.”
Mr. Trump made his remarks about blood-dipped bullets at a rally on Friday in South Carolina, before winning the state’s Republican primary the next day.
They came during a speech in which he repeated a questionable story told about Gen. John J. Pershing, an American Army leader of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. General Pershing, Mr. Trump said, used bullets dipped in pigs’ blood to summarily execute dozens of Muslim prisoners in the Philippines, shortly after the Spanish-American War.
The story, which has circulated online for years, has been dismissed as unsupported by historical documentation or evidence by websites that fact-check Internet rumors. Mr. Trump used it to illustrate his call to push back with brutal force against both Islamic terrorism and political correctness.
“This is something you can read in the history books,” Mr. Trump told his supporters, adding, “Not a lot of history books, because they don’t like teaching it.”
According to Mr. Trump’s telling, Gen. Pershing brought an end to terrorism after he captured 50 terrorists and executed 49 of them with blood-soaked bullets. The general told the sole survivor, “ ‘You go back to your people and you tell them what happened,’ ” Mr. Trump said.
Gen. Pershing used pigs’ blood, Mr. Trump said, because Muslims have “a whole thing with swine and animals and pigs, and you know the story — they don’t like them.”
The moral, Mr. Trump said, is, “We better start getting tough, and we better start getting vigilant and using our heads, or we’re not going to have a country, folks.”
Muslim-American groups reacted with horror to the remarks. Nihad Awad, the Executive Director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations said in a statement that Mr. Trump had “crossed the line from spreading hatred to inciting violence” in ways that placed Muslim-Americans “at risk from rogue vigilantes.”
A little more than a year ago, Dr. Barakat’s brother Deah, 23, was shot and killed at his home in Chapel Hill, N.C., alongside his wife, Yusor Abu-Salha, 21, and her sister, Razan Abu-Salha, 19. A neighbor, Craig Stephen Hicks, 46, turned himself in to police later that day.
Mr. Hicks was charged with three counts of murder, and federal authorities are investigating whether the killings constituted a hate crime. Mr. Hicks’ wife has said she believes he killed them over a dispute about parking.
In the year since their deaths Dr. Barakat has spoken out repeatedly about the rise of anti-Muslim sentiment and met with President Obama at a round table for Muslim-Americans.
Dr. Barakat said Mr. Trump’s remarks, delivered not long after the one-year anniversary of the killings in Chapel Hill, were “a moment when I just said, ‘enough is enough.’”
Facebook friend and acclaimed author Alanna Nash posted succinctly, yesterday.....
"...Donald Trump...why does he have to be so nasty, insulting everyone? Such a BULLY!..."
Obviously, Alanna's question is rhetorical.
Never one to miss the opportunity to offer real time answers to rhetorical questions, though, let me offer this:
We find ourselves, in the year of our Lord (or, perhaps, more appropriately, the year of oh my God!) 2016, a culture increasingly bereft of what the more romantic among us probably still refer to as "old fashioned values".
Tact, graciousness, modesty, deference, politeness, even civility, while not (yet) completely extinct, are certainly in a short supply that make pre-snowstorm bread shelves in the grocery store look like the grand opening of a new Sunbeam outlet.
Meanwhile, even a master sales associate would have a tough row to hoe in attempting to sell artistic and/or creative contributions to mankind as high brow. From "sitcoms" that can't manage more than three or four air minutes at a time without the need for one lame T&A and/or scatological and/or sexually provocative "punchline" or another to a popular music "scene" that has, in just a generation or two ,devolved from "you are so beautiful / to me" to "you a stupid hoe / you a stupid stupid hoe", there's no immediate danger that America is going to overdose on class and style.
By the way, being neither a prude, nor victim of old fart fogey-ism, I have no problem with cutting edge, I'm just a follower of the paraphrased Rick Blaine from the classic film "Casablanca"...
..."I don't mind a boob joke or an explicit song...I just object to a cut rate one..."
Now, add to the mix the time tested and successful methodology of telling people what they want to hear and gaining not only their admiration but, too often, their blind allegiance and you've got a formula that, at least in this here aforementioned year of OMG, inevitably cooks up and tastes nasty.
If nothing new.
Let alone the past, our contemporary history is chock-a-block full of masters of the art of mass manipulation.
Huey P. Long.
Legendary songstress Carole King wrote the penultimate anthem for those always prepared to fall in line and go where told to go...
"...where you lead / I will follow...."
BTW, I would have said "ultimate" there, but you and I both know that Kanye would waste a lot of our time arguing that description ad nauseum.
Donald Trump is simply the latest entry on the list.
And his "talent", like that of his peers on the rogue roster, is his mastery of the art.
The art of making the sale.
And closing the deal.
His own best selling, much heralded by his followers, insightful, innovative and, wouldn't you just know it, ghostwritten best seller "The Art Of The Deal" is all the proof any good prosecutor would need to prove to a jury that this guy is galaxy class used car salesman.
As if his being able to get within a hop, skip and a Super Tuesday of actually becoming a major party nominee for President wasn't sufficient evidence of his sales savvy.
Which brings us back to Alanna Nash's lyrical lament.
"...Donald Trump...why does he have to be so nasty, insulting everyone? Such a BULLY!..."
And, submitted for your (her) approval, my take on this Twilight Zone of a candidacy.
First, Alanna did a fine job of answering her own question.
He's nasty and insulting because he's a bully.
Couple of reasons that he's a bully.
One I can prove with empirical evidence.
That one being that he has built a billion dollar empire by bullying his way to getting what he wants.
Ergo, being a bully works for him.
And if ain't broke, and all that.
The other reason?
I suspect too loved by mommy, not loved enough by daddy and/or penile dimension issues might be at play somewhere in the psychic mix, but I have no empirical evidence to back that up.
Nor would I want to go after said evidence.
The other shoe, though, the "nasty and insulting" thing, is, for Trump and his ambitions, what the packagers of breakfast cereal and/or AS SEEN ON TV stuff brand as "value added" or "SPECIAL BONUS"
Like a talented quarterback who has the ability to both go with the standard playbook while being able to read the immediate lay of the land and call audibles accordingly, Trump has sensed, from the outset, that nasty and insulting would resonate with a lot of people in this nation at this time because nasty...and insulting...and low brow...and classless...and Kanye....and Kris, Khloe, Kourtney...and Seth McFarlane...and panicky, even hysterical, paranoiac fear of more airliners flying into more skyscrapers ...are pretty prominent colors on the American canvas these days.
And making the sale and closing the deal has absolutely nothing to do with who has the best price or the best value or even the best quality.
Or even any quality at all.
It has to do entirely with who does the most masterful job of playing to the crowd.
Or, more correctly, who plays well enough to draw the biggest crowd.
Even if the salesman is a racist, misogynist, blunt tool of a demagogue who any one with a reasonable IQ, fairly good eyesight and even average hearing could recognize and repudiate as a racist, misogynist, blunt tool of a demagogue.
In a country, and culture, though, that is increasingly bereft of tact, graciousness, modesty, deference, politeness, even civility, the big question mark is not so much why Trump behaves the way he does as it is just how many people in America can't see and hear this guy for what, and who, he really is.
Put in blunt Trump-speak...just how many deaf, dumb and blind Americans of voting age are currently residing in the United States?
Come July in Cleveland or, God forbid, come November all across the country....we're going to find out the exact numbers.