While I might find this man to be morally reprehensible, culturally ignorant, politically unaware, and by all appearances completely narcissistic, today’s post is not actually a bash Trump session. In fact, I can’t believe I’m about to write this, but I think Trump should be thanked. I know I sound foolish, or perhaps heavily medicated. However, I do in fact credit Trump with a few “good things.” His political career has served as an eye-opener on three fronts.
Many Congressmen and Congresswomen Lack a Moral Backbone
Trump has also managed to put a microscope on Congress. Because his comments and policy suggestions are so out there, and often lack common sense and decency, politicians find themselves being put in a position to have to take a stand. Unfortunately, I’ve found during Trump’s candidacy and brief term in in office, that many congressmen and women refuse to take a stand because they lack a moral backbone. They won’t call him out on his increasingly suspicious ties to Russia. They won’t address his bull in a china shop approach to really fixing healthcare. They barely blink an eye when he makes brash offensive comments that set American diplomacy back decades. Heck, many were reluctant to speak up during Trump’s Charlottesville press disaster.
If I’m going to keep it real, which you know I am, outside of the Democratic Party, the Independents, and a handful of Republicans, elected leaders that make up Congress have shown they lack an ability to stand up for what they know is right. Look, I know we all don’t view universal health care the same, but there is a certain Scrooge quality about ripping healthcare away from over 24 million people and being okay with that. And as diverse as this country is, you would think people would agree that equality and justice shouldn’t be luxuries held for only white naturalized men.
How many congressmen and women can you name (that aren’t Democrats) that voiced outrage when Trump gave Attorney General Sessions the greenlight to again defer to private prisons? A decision that negatively impacts more minorities than whites. How many politicians did you see race to challenge 45’s endorsement of the militarization of police? Something that also has more harmful effects for largely minority communities. I’m not even going to get into this latest repeal of DACA.
I’m just saying, the more politicians refuse to speak up and out, the more I realize one of two things is happening. Either many congressmen and women share Trump’s views and are glad they were said, and even happier they weren’t caught expressing them. Or, they are so invested in this “party line” that they refuse to buck the system. Regardless of the reasoning, it’s disappointing. But I’m glad my eyes have been opened to the truth.
Let me take a moment to applaud Republican senators John McCain, Lindsay Graham, Susan Collins, and Lisa Murkowski. They truly do have a moral backbone and I’m thankful.
George W. Bush Was Not That Bad
Listen, when President Bush was in the White House, I like many couldn’t way for end of his presidency to end. I thought, “no one could be worse than Bush.” Oh how wrong I was. Leave it to 45 to make me miss a president that falsely led us into a war in Iraq.
While I disagreed with President Bush politically on many fronts, I actually didn’t mind him as a person. I know that sounds crazy. However, removing the politician from the man, I think he would have been a pretty good guy to hang with. I’d go to his house to eat barbecue and drink a few beers if invited. In fact, I’d hang out with President Bush before I ever decided to hang out with Al Gore. I’m saying this as a pretty moderate liberal. Granted the Texan is by far no President Barack Obama, he is at least better than the person holding the nuclear codes today.
Band-Aids over Bullet Holes
Although I can’t necessarily give 45 all the credit for the current racial tension, bigotry, ignorance, and overall divisiveness in this country, I do think he put a spotlight on the fact that America has a diversity issue. Like no one who has sat in The Oval Office before him in modern history, 45 has managed to whip up enough hatred, and repeal enough Obama-era polices, to show U.S. leadership repairs the social ills in America with minor patches that don’t address the real problems. Arguably since the end of the Civil War, politicians in the United States have made a habit of trying to fix bullet wounds with Band-Aids.
This country has had serious problems addressing the past in a way that recognizes the wrongdoings, is apologetic for said wrongdoings, and is ever mindful that the wrongdoings have had continued lasting effects. Yep I’m about to take it there. From the very start of the United States of America, minorities have been institutionally position in roles of “less than”, not deserving of equal rights. Why else would people have felt it was okay enslave other humans? Despite slavery ending over 150 years ago, America never fully corrected the way in which it culturally views race. Blacks and other minorities have had to fight for every right now available to them. And even then, there are laws and policies in place currently that disenfranchise minorities.
I’m not sure if it will ever happen and what that will actually look like, but this country has to have real conversations about race that result in real change. Superficial fixes aren’t good enough anymore. And Trump’s rise to power has really driven that point home with me.
To my dreamers, Know that I stand with You!