Donald Trump: For Better or For Worse?
The election of Donald Trump as President of the United States was the best possible outcome of the campaign.
Barack Obama has served the United States for eight years. No matter what the critics say, he did a remarkable job and became the role model of many people around the world. However, since his term has come to an end, he was to be replaced this year. It happened so quickly, and everyone was shocked by the results. On November 9 ,2016, Donald Trump was elected President of the United States of America.
How did it happen?
The American people fear corruption in government, and Hillary Clinton is seen as the most corrupt person to ever seek presidency. They wanted to stop her from becoming President by voting for Donald Trump, since he is not as bad as Hillary in that regard. Indeed, her email incident raised questions about her judgment and trustworthiness.
Hillary Clinton served as the Secretary of State from 2009 to 2013, under President Barack Obama. During her term, she had used a personal email account and a private server located at a house in New York. Hillary and her staff turned over the emails they believed were public records to the State Department, and destroyed the emails they decided were personal. It is a very serious offense, but on July 6, Loretta Lynch, Attorney General of the U.S., announced that the Justice Department would not pursue criminal charges. Then, on October 28, the FBI analyzed newfound emails, and declared there to be no clear evidence that Hillary Clinton or her staff intended to violate the laws. Instead, the FBI believes they were just extremely careless when they handled the classified information, and adds that Hillary’s server could have been hacked. Of course, there are speculations, and it is possible that Hillary bought the silence of both the Justice Department and the FBI.
Because of Hillary Clinton’s “careless mistake”, emails related to Benghazi have been released. As it was not marked classified yet, Hillary forwarded it to her daughter Chelsea Clinton. As a result, the State Department is slowly releasing the emails that were turned over, but there are also other emails that Hillary did not turn over. Nonetheless, the Republicans blame her for the attack on September 11, 2012, for failing to properly protect U.S. installations. That day, attackers at the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans. It is suspicious, because Hillary knew they were planned terrorist operations, but still said they were just spontaneous attacks. Then, if she had won the election, wouldn’t she be putting the United States at risk?
The corruption does not end here. Effectively, when the Clintons left the White House, they were in legal debt, so they made money by giving speeches. It is unclear where the speeches happened, how much they charged for their speeches, what they said during their speeches, and which speeches would be given to the Clinton Foundation. People also wonder where the family drew line between their charitable work, their speeches for profit, and Hillary’s work at the State Department.
Moreover, transcripts of paid speeches Hillary tried to keep secret were found. Three years ago, Hillary gave a speech for the Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago Vanguard, and said that the flow of Syrian refugees into Jordan had put the country’s security at risk; she said that “they can’t possibly vet all those refugees so they don’t know if, you know, jihadists are coming in along with legitimate refugees.” Now, Hillary wants to increase the number of Syrian refugees entering the United States. It is very contradictory, because if she thinks that the refugees are dangerous to Jordan, shouldn’t she think that they are dangerous to the U.S.? This is one of the many examples of when Hillary contradicts herself.
What about Donald Trump?
Donald Trump is seen as a symbol of hope for many Americans. Contrarily to his opponent Hillary, he has no experience in politics, because he devoted his life to business. Moreover, people strongly believe that Trump has the power to “make America great again”, as he says himself. They are tired of politicians not keeping their electoral promises, and are taking a risk by voting for the inexperienced Donald Trump.
Nonetheless, even if Donald Trump always denies it, many women have filed complaints against him. Some met him in the world of real estate and others during beauty pageants. The New York Times interviewed more than fifty women, and most of them said he revealed “unwelcome romantic advances, unending commentary on the female form, a shrewd reliance on ambitious women, and unsettling workplace conduct.” When he likes the physical appearance of a woman, he will nurture her career until…she gains weight. Indeed, Trump sees himself as a promoter of women, which is why he purchased the Miss Universe Organization. One of his victims is Alicia Machado, Miss Universe 1996, whom Trump told to lose weight, which caused her to be sick, anorexic, and bulimic for five years. Although he inflicted damage in these women’s lives, they needed his assistance because he was a celebrity with wealth, power and connections. Furthermore, Donald Trump is known for his inappropriate comments about his daughter Ivanka, complimenting her body and saying he would date her if she was not his child. Let us also not forget about his rude comments about women, exposed in his “locker-room talk”.
It is also crucial to consider Donald Trump and his team’s extreme racism. He assigned the position of National Security Advisor to Michael T. Flynn, who made these terrible comments about Islam: “I don’t see a lot of people screaming ‘Jesus Christ’ with hatchets or machetes or rifles shooting up clubs or hatcheting, you know, literally axing families on a train. So it’s like cancer. And it’s like a malignant cancer, though, in this case. And it has metastasized.” The problem is that this man is either truly ignorant, or he pretends that he does not know about the KKK backing up the President-Elect. Actually, of the first five people that Trump has named to serve his administration, none are women or minorities.
One good thing about Donald Trump is that he has clearly stated that if he becomes President, he would give up the presidential salary. He also said he will allow wealthy Americans to opt out of receiving their Social Security benefits, as he will do himself. Perhaps, these words demonstrate his will to sacrifice himself and put America first, as he promised.
What the Future Holds
Donald Trump has won the election, rigged or not, and there is nothing we can do to change the result. However, Trump’s views on abortion and immigration, for example, can possibly lead to dangerous decisions. This is why the whole world needs to be careful and aware of what is to come.
The Democrats are keeping an eye on Donald Trump to make sure he does not do any faux pas. The senior United States senator from New York, Chuck Schumer, said that the Democrats will not compromise “for the sake of working with him.” He also said that, “on certain issues, candidate Trump voiced very progressive and populist opinions. For instance, getting rid of the carried interest loophole, changing our trade laws dramatically, a large infrastructure bill.” He added that the Democrats will not be helping him repeal Obamacare or build his wall.
All in all, when one decides to put their face out in the public and become a politician, they are taking many risks. They have to accept that they will be criticized all the time and that not everyone will be on their side. This is why they all deserve to show the people what they are capable of. Who knows, maybe Donald Trump’s whole campaign was a joke but now he is taking his job seriously? Perhaps it is time to stay open-minded and hope that he can bring positive changes to the United States. Although everyone has a bias, the rhetoric of hatred must stop and people have to unite in this difficult moment.
Written by MWR author Shan Wang, edited by MWR reviewer Cassandra Moschella
The election of Donald Trump as President of the United States was the worst possible outcome of the campaign.
There was a time when Trump’s candidacy was a joke. He descended on an escalator like an angel who was too lazy to take the stairway from Heaven; he bragged that he was worth 10 billion dollars, because nothing says “I sympathize with the working class” like having your name written in gold; he then proceeded to insult 17.4% of the country in a single sentence (Krogstad). Alas, just as Trump supporters were nostalgic for the 1950s, I am now nostalgic for the pre-Trump era, a time when abstract concepts like “facts”, “civility” and “respect” still existed — the good old days, if you will. However, despite all he has said and done, on January 20th, Donald J. Trump will be sworn in as the 45th president of the United States. This is, without a doubt, the worst possible outcome of the 2016 election.
First, what does Donald Trump mean for women and minorities? Perhaps the most enduring impact of Trump’s victory is that he has legitimized racist and sexist thinking in America. Whether consciously or not, Americans’ choice to elect him as president serves to implicitly condone his past conduct. When Trump bragged about grabbing women by the pu**y, spoke of deporting 11 million illegal immigrants and proposed banning an entire religion from entering the country, many Americans were horrified, but others were encouraged: those who held discriminatory beliefs felt validated as the Republican nominee confirmed their fears and broadcast their views to the nation. Thus, a decades-long attempt to rid society of harmful, antiquated beliefs was undone by a candidate who exploited them for political gain. Indeed, Trump’s win allows the alt-right fringe to tout the idea that nearly half of the country agrees with them. America did not fundamentally change between November 7 and November 9; what changed was how citizens perceived their country, as once-slain beasts came roaring back to life. Following the election, hate crimes against minorities saw a more significant rise than the period after 9/11, as white nationalists were emboldened by the words of their president-elect Trump (Eversley). While individual policies can be dismantled, Trump’s legacy may well be stirring the pot of prejudice until it boiled over, leaving millions of women and minorities to drown in the toxic waters of hatred and bigotry.
Second, what does Donald Trump mean for the working class? It is important to recognize that many citizens voted for Trump out of an earnest belief that he would improve the lives of American workers. However, 4 years of Donald Trump will hurt these vulnerable citizens most. The richest 1% will collect 47% of Trump’s proposed tax cuts, while 8.5 million working class families will see their taxes significantly raised (Neate). Furthermore, researchers determined that Trump’s pledge to drastically raise tariffs on China and Mexico in order to bring back American jobs would in fact lead to a trade war that would send the United States into a recession, with an unemployment rate of 8.6% (Matthews). Those cold hard numbers may not be as enticing as Trump’s Reagan-esque slogans, but the working class deserves to know the truth about Trump’s plan to “Make America Great Again.” His pledge to revive the coal and manufacturing sectors is wildly optimistic at best and cruelly deceptive at worst; Donald J. Trump cannot singlehandedly wave away decades of technological advances that automated manufacturing, nor can he change the energy needs of the world with the snap of his finger. The working class wanted a champion, but instead settled for a fraud.
Third, what does Donald Trump mean for the national dialogue? US Senator Hiram Warren Johnson mused that the first casualty of war is the truth (Hightower). In a rare instance of success, Donald Trump has managed to kill the truth before starting a new war in the Middle East. Indeed, Americans saw Trump as more authentic and trustworthy than his opponent, despite the fact that independent fact-checkers determined that 70% of Trump’s statements were false (Finnegan). It did not matter that illegal immigrants had lower crime rates than Americans citizens, nor did anyone care when Trump blatantly lied about his opposition to the Iraq War. As with his marriages, Trump does not seem committed to the truth, and this has two important consequences. Firstly, it impedes any fruitful discussion of the pressing issues facing America. Disagreeing on policy is normal; however, any resolution to a debate requires that both sides accept a basic set of facts. Trump’s tendency to distort the truth to suit his interests is a dangerous quality in a president, whose role is often to inform Americans on the actions of his government and on world developments. Secondly, Trump’s inability to distinguish fact from fiction means that the most powerful man in the world is also woefully misinformed. Six months ago, Trump did not know that Russia had invaded Ukraine; he was unaware of what Brexit was until a few weeks before the referendum; upon his election, he was reportedly surprised by the scope of the presidency; and in the weeks since his election victory, he has repeatedly turned down intelligence briefings that would get him up to speed on world affairs (Usborne). The United States has had Republicans and Democrats grace the office of the president, but each leader had a clear understanding of the issues… Until Donald J. Trump. Thus, as Trump cleans out relics of the Obama era from the oval office, he may as well add the truth to the pile of rubble left in his wake.
Hillary Clinton was by no means a perfect candidate, but she was competent, knowledgeable and experienced, three qualities that Trump sorely lacks. The main criticisms flung at her ring hollow when compared to Donald Trump. Clinton was hounded for her use of a private email server, despite the fact that Donald Trump frequently deleted company records and emails during his many criminal and civil investigations (Eichenwald). Clinton was labelled a flip-flopper, even though 15 years ago, Donald Trump was a registered Democrat who was pro-choice, supported gun control and extolled the virtues of single-payer healthcare (Schwarz). Clinton was accused of taking money from foreign governments such as Saudi Arabia through the Clinton Foundation, while Donald Trump registered eight companies in Saudi Arabia during his presidential campaign (Savransky). Indeed, with experts ringing alarm bells over Donald Trump’s unprecedented conflicts of interest, Trump’s administration promises a new level of corruption in Washington. Voters were right to view Hillary Clinton as flawed; however, they were wrong in overlooking the infinitely more serious threat that Donald Trump posed to their country.
In the 2016 election, voters hungered for change; with Trump, they got it, but perhaps they should have specified whether the change had to be for the better. For women, minorities, the working class and Americans who believe in the notion of truth, Donald Trump’s victory was a nightmarish outcome to the bitter battle for the White House. In the end, voters were duped; just like the fox on his head, Donald Trump cunningly conned the American people into believing that a billionaire businessman was the only man who could fix Washington. “Drain the swamp,” he often repeated. In reality, Donald Trump is the swamp. In 2020, after his true ambitions become clear, voters will have the chance to drain it.
Written by MWR author Logan Stack, edited by the MWR team
Works Cited (Shan Wang)
Barbaro, Michael and Megan Twohey. “Crossing the Line: How Donald Trump Behaved With Women in Private.” The New York Times, May 14 2016, www.nytimes.com/2016/05/15/us/politics/donald-trump-women.html?_r=0.
Graham, David A. “From Whitewater to Benghazi: A Clinton-Scandal Primer.” The Atlantic, November 6 2016, www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/11/tracking-the-clinton-controversies-from-whitewater-to-benghazi/396182/.
Mccaskill, Nolan D. “Team Trump’s most outrageous comments.” Politico, November 18 2016, www.politico.com/story/2016/11/sessions-flynn-pompeo-trump-outrageous-comments-231612.
Stokols, Eli. “What Trump’s early picks say about his administration.” Politico, November 18 2016, www.politico.com/story/2016/11/trump-cabinet-selections-231617.
Tani, Maxwell. “Donald Trump says he would refuse a presidential salary if he wins.” Business Insider, September 21 2015, www.businessinsider.com/donald-trump-salary-president-2015-9.
Temple-West, Patrick. “Schumer lays out where Democrats can work with Trump.” Politico, November 20 2016, www.politico.com/story/2016/11/chuck-schumer-donald-trump-231672 .
Thomas, Carl. “Corruption and Collusion.” The Washington Times, October 17 2016, www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/oct/17/hillary-clintons-corruption-and-collusion/.
Works Cited (Logan Stack)
Eichenwald, Kurt. “Donald Trump’s companies destroyed emails in defiance of court orders.” Newsweek, 31 Oct. 2016, www.newsweek.com/2016/11/11/donald-trump-companies-destroyed-emails-documents-515120.html.
Eversley, Melanie. “Post-election spate of hate crimes worse than post-9/11, experts say.” USA Today, 14 Nov. 2016, www.usatoday.com/story/news/2016/11/12/post-election-spate-hate-crimes-worse-than-post-911-experts-say/93681294/.
Finnegan, Michael. “Scope of Donald Trump’s falsehoods unprecedented for presidential candidate.” Los Angeles Times, 25 Sept. 2016, www.latimes.com/nation/ct-donald-trump-falsehoods-20160925-story.html.
Hightower, Jim. “The First Casualty of War.” Other Words, 19 Nov. 2014, otherwords.org/the-first-casualty-of-war.
Krogstad, Jens Manuel. “Key facts about how the U.S. Hispanic population is changing.” Pew Research Center, 8 Sept. 2016, www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/09/08/key-facts-about-how-the-u-s-hispanic-population-is-changing.
Matthews, Dylan. “Donald Trump’s presidency is going to be a disaster for the white working class.” Vox, 9 Nov. 2016, www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2016/11/9/13572172/donald-trump-white-working-class.
Neate, Rupert. “Trump’s tax plan: massive cuts for the 1% will usher ‘era of dynastic wealth.’” The Guardian, 23 Nov. 2016, www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/nov/23/trump-tax-plan-cuts-wealthy-low-income-inequality.
Savransky, Rebecca. “Trump registered eight companies in Saudi Arabia during campaign: report.” The Hill, 21 Dec. 2016, thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/306990-trump-appeared-to-register-eight-companies-in-saudi-arabia.
Schwarz, Hunter. “The many ways in which Donald Trump was once a liberal’s liberal.” The Washington Post, 9 July 2016, www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2015/07/09/ths-many-ways-in-which-donald-trump-was-once-a-liberals-liberal.
Timm, Jane C. “The 141 Stances Donald Trump Took During His White House Bid.” NBC News, 20 Nov. 2016, www.nbcnews.com/politics/2016-election/full-list-donald-trump-s-rapidly-changing-policy-positions-n547801.
Usborne, David. “Donald Trump has attended ‘only two’ of his daily classified intelligence briefings since winning election.” The Independent, 24 Nov. 2016, www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/donald-trump-2-briefings-attendance-since-election-classified-intelligence-daily-a7436781.html.
Wright, David. “Trump says Putin is ‘not going to go into Ukraine,’ despite Crimea.” CNN, 1 Aug. 2016, www.cnn.com/2016/07/31/politics/donald-trump-russia-ukraine-crimea-putin