As a student resident of the University of Vermont’s “no-nukes” Living/Learning Center program in the Reagan years, when America remained precariously close to nuclear war with the Soviet Union, it was unimaginable that I would ever look to the Old Testament for inspiration in writing about winning and nuclear war – but times have changed.

Today Chapter 3 of the Book of Ecclesiastes is my go-to source for a coping mechanism in a world where the U.S. president flippantly tweets threats of nuclear annihilation from his golf course in New Jersey to a trigger-happy “crazy fat kid that’s running North Korea,” as Sen. John McCain once described Kim Jong Un, the 33-year-old ruler of the authoritarian state.

For everything, there is a season and a time for every matter under heaven. There’s a time to seek and a time to lose. Trump and Kim are seekers in a dangerously foolish tit-for-tat that may make now a time for war – a war that humanity can’t win.

Kim is only one year younger than second-place finisher and local hero Rob Gomez, whose time it was to lose the Maine men’s division of the TD Bank Beach to Beacon 10K road race to Jesse Orach, the front-runner who collapsed right before the finish line. Instead of passing Orach to win and leaving him in the dust to suffer the consequences of heatstroke, Gomez helped his competitor to victory, saying, “He deserved to win … he needed to win.”

Chinese social media sites routinely refer to Kim as “Fatty, the Third,” which may explain in part why he is not a nice person. Nice guys finish last in North Korea, if at all.

In Cape Elizabeth, kids who participate and nice guys who finish second get a trophy. Gomez was given a handmade keepsake box crafted by Thos. Moser and engraved with the Beach to Beacon logo, something usually reserved for the divisional winners.

This running season, sportsmanship took the prize. Kindness was the victor.

It’s unlikely President Trump will be joining the chorus of adulation for Gomez because he’s too busy smack-talking Kim, the guy known for executing his uncle (a longtime mentor) and poisoning his half brother.

Someone like President Trump would have no time for the likes of Gomez and his feel-good story. Let’s face it, giving Orach the win because he needed it sounds an awful lot like good old-fashioned communism, doesn’t it? Wasn’t it Karl Marx who said, “From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs”?

There’s a time to weep and a time to laugh, the Bible says, and now is no time for weeping, folks. Weeping is for crybabies this season.

We are therefore compelled by circumstances beyond our control and by the Holy Bible to laugh at what we can imagine President Trump would tweet about Gomez and the B2B to stoke his base of evangelicals:

“Toughen up, you baby! Only losers lose!”

“What saps! B2B babies’ tender feelings disgusting! Make America great again and win!”

“We won’t let communists ruin our sports!”

Maybe the season of Donald Trump is for a reason. Maybe his tough talk and threats of military dominance are the killer antidote to small, powerful men aiming big missiles at our shores, like Lil’ Kim. The arms race is no road race. The rules are different, and participation guarantees no rewards.

In the context of geopolitical saber-rattling, the Gomez- Orach story raises questions about the times we live in.

Has the bar for human interaction in a hypercompetitive free-market world of cable news shrieking heads been lowered so much so that a simple act of kindness is extraordinary?

Is the adoration of athletes who simply behave well deserved? Did the good Samaritan deserve a trophy? Does winning matter?

Cynthia Dill is a civil rights lawyer and a former state senator. She can be contacted at:

[email protected]

Twitter: @dillesquire