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Digital Subscriptions > Newsweek International > 22nd September 2017 > THE BOY WHO WOULD NOT BE QUEENS


Spending a night in Donald Trump’s childhood home is not like sleeping in Hitler’s lair, but thanks for asking.

A BOVE MY BED IS A SIGN ENCASED in a wooden frame. “In this bedroom,” it says in calligraphic font, “President Donald J. Trump was likely conceived, by his parents, Fred and Mary Trump. The world has never been the same.”

The bedroom is on the second floor of a Tudor house on Wareham Place, in a part of Queens called Jamaica Estates, in New York City but closer to Long Island than Manhattan. Far closer. The house is “vaguely faux-Tudorish,” says Gwenda Blair, author of The Trumps: Three Generations of Builders and a President, and with its cream stucco façade, peaked roof and decorative wooden planks, it looks like the manse of a minor English lord. Every “good” suburb of Connecticut and New Jersey has such houses.

This was the house Fred Trump built in 1940, as he was becoming one of the city’s most powerful builders. Donald, his middle son, spent his first four years here, from 1946 until 1950. What that log cabin was to Abraham Lincoln, this house is to Donald Trump. He is a New Yorker, sure, but not in the way of Manhattan- born Theodore Roosevelt. He is a man of Queens, like that other great defender of forgotten Americans, Archie Bunker.

As the Trump family grew in both size and wealth, the house became too small, so Fred moved his family one street over. You can see that house from the bedrooms of the first Trump house. While the first house is on street level, the second is on a rise of land, already distancing itself from the people below.

Earlier this month, the Wareham Place house became available on Airbnb. The cost per night is $725. The listing also says the house can sleep 20, though most of those people have to be cool with bunk beds. Also, the woman who manages the listing, Ari, will be there the entire time. (She lives in the attic.)

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WHO'S KILLING AMERICA'S SPERM? Hagai Levine doesn't scare easily. The Hebrew University Public Health researcher is the former chief epidemiologist for the Israel Defense Forces, which means he’s acquainted with danger and risk in a way most of his academic counter-parts aren’t. So when he raises doubts about the future of the human race, it’s worth listening. Together with Shanna Swan, a professor of environmental medicine and public health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Levine authored a major new analysis that tracked male sperm levels over the past few decades, and what he found frightened him. “Reproduction may be the most important function of any species,” says Levine. “Something is very wrong with men.”