If there’s one thing President Donald Trump knows, it’s that it’s fun to stay at the YMCA.
As the outgoing president said farewell to the American people at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland on Wednesday morning ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, he implored everyone to “have a good life” and proceeded to blare the Village People’s “YMCA” while boarding Air Force One.
The song selection is notable for a few reasons. For one, the Village People have repeatedly asked Trump to stop using their songs.
Trump’s campaign has previously used “YMCA,” as well as “Macho Man,” during rallies and other events. In October 2020, the Village People’s lead singer, Victor Willis, told BBC News that he doesn’t “endorse Trump, I’ve never endorsed Trump, nor has the Village People.”
“Donald Trump does what Donald Trump does. I’ve never seen him actually put his hands up and make the YMCA. He’s changed it to M-A-G-A or something,” he added.
When reached for comment by HuffPost, the Village People issued a statement:
We asked him to cease and desist long ago. However, since he’s a bully, our request was ignored. Thankfully he’s now out of office, so it would seem his abusive use of our music has finally ended. We hope to spearhead a change in copyright law that will give artists and publishers more control over who can and cannot use our music in the public space. Currently there is no limit to blanket licensing.
While the reason for Trump’s repeated use of the song is unknown, right-wing network Newsmax did bizarrely attempt to unpack the selection:
Twitter, unsurprisingly, could not get over the absurdity of Trump using a song about a worldwide youth organisation for the close of his presidency. Here’s a summation of the general response: