Over the last few months I have tried my best to resist the temptation to give Donald Trump page space. I’ve effectively been in denial.
Somehow, I couldn’t make myself believe that a great nation like the United States would do anything other than pay lip service to a presidential candidate whose aggressive manner and ruthless – and often deeply personal – attacks on his opponents, were nothing short of shocking.
I was wrong; he was elected President and became (in theory at least) leader of the so-called ‘free world’.
Following on closely from his official inauguration ceremony, Donald Trump wasted no time in bulldozing his most controversial policies into reality. For quite how long his executive orders will survive unchallenged remains to be seen, but he has certainly succeeded in hijacking the headlines of most news outlets around the globe.
He appears not to be a man who takes advice or criticism easily. He states – almost too loudly to be believable – he is not a racist, or a xenophobe. He claims he is only trying to protect the United States from outside threat. He says he will accomplish this by raising an imaginary drawbridge, building walls and ‘reclaiming’ his borders.
It must sound very plausible to a die-hard patriotic Trump fan, but to the outside world it is just another example of a man appearing to possess an ego bigger than the continent on which he resides and which – in his own mind – he now rules. He won’t accept criticism, or engage in discussion.
His recent headline grabbing 90 day ban on Muslims entering the states because they originate from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria or Yemen has caused global criticism and been reversed by the courts Trump states it is not intended to be anti-Muslim. However, it implies all Muslims are a threat.
Similarly, his desire to build a wall between the US and Mexico he says is not anti-Mexican; it just propagates the myth that all Mexicans are undesirables, drug dealers or racketeers.
President Trump won’t acknowledge any reasonable argument that the majority of Muslims and Mexicans might share his abhorrence of any acts that, in recent times, might have taken place in their name. He won’t accept he could be driving young disaffected Muslims into the open arms of terrorist organisations by his act of enforcing a ban that will in turn feed the myth of a Holy War against the whole Muslim religion.
Trump is a man used to having his own way. He enjoys being seen as combative and a celebrity. The world, however, is an increasingly volatile place and needs rational thought and an acceptance of another point of view. It does not need a maverick operating through the world of Twitter.
The real world of politics is nothing like that of a reality TV show. Only time will tell if President Trump should remain hired or whether he should be told “you’re fired!”
Whatever the outcome, you can guarantee more controversy.
(Photo copyright and courtesy of Michael Vadon)