No one needs to make America great again. What the nation needs is damage control and restoration.
On the chilled noon of January 2017, a couple in their fifties with a content smile on their faces and heavy hearts kissed the White House goodbye. “They went out the way they came in,” said Cody Keenan, Mr. Obama’s chief speechwriter. “It was graceful and dignified and generous and warm to everyone who worked for them.”
The jet awaited to fly the Obamas to California, where they wished to spend time after eight years in the White House.
Watch: Obamas depart the White House
On the same day, a renowned name from the upper echelon walked into the White House with the new First Lady, as the 45th President of the United States. Things would have been fine if he’d have stopped at being the 45th President only. Unfortunately (for America and not for him), he went beyond the duties constitution had vested in him-
Donald Trump went on to become the symbol of conservative madness, at the dawn of an America where denial and delusions run rampant.
With Donald Trump came the vision with the slogan ‘make America great again’ where he neither explained ‘great’ nor ‘again’ to the citizens. And thank god he didn’t because the country cannot take any more contradictions from Mr. Trump. Whether America needs to become great again or not is a question that Americans need to let go as of now. America doesn’t need to become great again because all that it needs right now is to be saved.
Economic downturn, irrational budget cuts, unfriendly environment reforms, rampant corruption, racism, questionable conduct with refugees and immigrants, civil riots, intolerance, perils on women and LGBTQ rights, menacing reforms in gun laws, education and healthcare in shambles, the list is never-ending. America was never this for decades. And it won’t come as a surprise if tomorrow the world wakes up to a statement by Trump that this is exactly what he implied with Great America.
Internally, the nation is exasperated. Externally, the world is skeptical. Allies are no more sure about the American pillar of international diplomacy and adversaries are becoming more intrepid. And the only relations magnifying at a promising level are the ones with authoritarian countries.
Watch: Trump puts World Leaders on Notice
Allies are no more sure about the American pillar of international diplomacy and adversaries are becoming more intrepid.
To quote Foreign Policy’s report: Global confidence in Trump is significantly lower than in German Chancellor Angela Merkel (46 percent), French President Emmanuel Macron (41 percent), and Russian President Vladimir Putin (33 percent)—and just one point higher than in Chinese leader Xi Jinping (28 percent). Germans are now equally divided on whether the United States (37 percent) or China (36 percent) is their closest partner, while just 28 percent of Britons trust the United States to act responsibly. Confidence in Trump is only 36 percent in Japan, 32 percent in the United Kingdom, 28 percent in Canada, 28 percent in Brazil, 20 percent in France, 13 percent in Germany, and a mere 8 percent in Mexico, while favorable views of the United States have fallen from 64 percent in 2016 to 53 percent in 2019. Asked in June, whether she trusted Trump, Merkel paused before saying only, “I work with elected presidents around the world, including, of course, the American one.”
In May 2020, the number of coronavirus cases surpassed a quarter of million across the globe. The leaders of the world decided to come together in a virtual Summit and devise a worldwide plan to combat the virus. The Summit, organized by the European Union, begets the international joint endeavor of $8 billion to create the vaccine. Usually, the United States leads such initiatives and congregates national efforts internationally during extreme conditions. However, under Trump’s governance, the U.S. not only bypassed the leadership role, it didn’t attend the Summit in the first place.
Global confidence in Trump is significantly lower than in Angela Merkel, Emmanuel Macron, and Vladimir Putin.
America can’t breathe.
The slogan ‘Make America Great Again’ is not originally propelled by Trump’s campaign. In 1980, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush had already used the slogans to their advantage. However, as a businessman, Trump reserved exclusive rights over ‘Make America Great Again’ by filing a trademark registration for a fee worth $325.
The choice of Trump’s campaign slogan that later became the symbol of right-wing’s resistance signified that for the millionaire president, something was missing. When he said that he will make America great again, he meant that something was missing from America in recent times and that he will restore the nation to what it used to be. During election campaigning in 2016, Donald Trump declared all Mexicans as criminals and rapists, further suggesting that the U.S. should put a ban on the entry of all Muslims.
Mexicans are rapists should have been the end of Trump’s presidency. https://t.co/FRlM49R9mx— Leslie Mac (@LeslieMac) October 6, 2020
Kip Browns, a former employee at Trump’s Castle recalls from the 1980s, “When Donald and Ivana came to the casino, the bosses would order all the black people off the floor. It was the eighties, I was a teenager, but I remember it: They put us all in the back.” Similarly, Donald Trump always opposed the leadership roles of politicians of color like Barack Obama and Kamala Harris in the American political scene. In 2011, he mobilized the rumor that Barack Obama was not born in the United States and sent a team of investigators to look into his certificates from Hawaii. Later, when proven wrong, Trump went on to claim that Obama couldn’t ever go to Harvard because he is black. In Trump’s analogy, black people can’t be brilliant.
Donald Trump always opposed the rising prominence of politicians of color like Barack Obama and Kamala Harris in the American political scene.
Nothing improved after Donald Trump took up the office of President in the White House. In fact, matters have worsened since. Trump’s racial slurs weren’t just individual remarks that could be brushed aside. They came from the biggest leadership role in the world which meant it cleared the roads for others in the country whose racism was covert but alive. When on 25th May 2020, George Floyd begged for his breath, the world witnessed what the breaking point looks like. While any President would have stood in solidarity with the deceased and tried to resolve the violent protests throughout the country, Trump set another benchmark for ruthless racism.
Nothing improved after Donald Trump took up the office of President in the White House. In fact, matters have worsened since.
Brimming with ego, disregardful to the demands of citizens, Trump gave impetus to counter protests by giving remarks painted all over with disdain and racial intolerance. The most recent testimony to the fact is Trump’s remarks in the U.S. Presidential debate, when moderator Chris Wallace asked if he was willing to accept systematic racism in America and denounce White Supremacists. The President said: “Sure, I am willing to do that.. Proud Boys, stand back and stand by. But I’ll tell you what, somebody’s gotta do something about Antifa and left.”
There is a breaking point to everything. What happened during #blacklivesmatter movement was just the tip of its iceberg.
What Matters in Trump’s America
If you are white and believe that you are immune to the worst repercussions of Trump’s reelection, think again. When madness prevails, everybody goes down. Reforms in gun laws signify that Trump is heedless towards people’s lives. In the process of stepping back in time, instead of developing forward, Trump’s reforms in gun laws have weakened background check for acquiring a gun, sabotaging the current laws that prohibit the people with mental illness from keeping a firearm. Furthermore, Trump’s Gun reforms also trim down the categories of individuals with criminal warrants who are barred from acquiring a gun. This comes from conflicting opinions between the FBI and ATF on possession and purchase of guns by a fugitive. While the FBI vouched for pervasive application of the law, ATF argued that only the individuals with criminal warrants who have left the state should fall under the umbrella of this law. Trump administration adopted ATF’s argument making it easier for fugitives to possess a gun.
If you are white and believe that you are immune to the worst repercussions of Trump’s reelection, think again.
Maybe it’s time that conservatives answer the question : How does refraining the independent choices of women and LGBTQ+ community classified under human rights and not human rights violation? Conservatives are glued to the age-old traditions born out of religious orthodoxy. Gender is biological to Trump’s conservative vote bank. The outrageous act of revoking health care protection to transgenders under Obamacare is a step synonymous to violation of human rights. Let’s not forget how the regulations also undermine access to abortion. The world hasn’t forgotten the oblique resentment from the White House on Pride Day when the administrative staff wasn’t allowed to hoist pride flag over White House.
What Trump didn’t realize was that, while propounding the slogan ‘Make America Great Again’, he was obligating that by the end of four years, he will either make America great again, or he will not. Perhaps the biggest fallout of MAGA was no explanation of the measurement criteria of ‘greatness’. Citizens, in the absence of formal criteria, are free to assume their own and based on the tenure of the white, millionaire president, there are some stark options to pick up from- human rights, racism, gun laws and the biggest of all, covid-19.
Needless to say, MAGA campaign has disappointed the country in all. So while Republicans convince Americans to once again help them make America great again, the appropriate answer is — America doesn’t need greatness. It needs damage-control and rectification.
America doesn’t need greatness. It needs damage-control and rectification.