Some days I just don’t want to watch the news. I stay off Twitter and Facebook in hopes that the disaster also known as President Trump, will not permeate too much of my waking minutes. Last night, I dreamt he tried to rape me. Then I watched him rape another woman whom I could not protect. I told everyone around me that we must flee. Pack quickly and leave. When I woke up to the news that Trump was confused about the Civil War and suggested that his hero, Andrew Jackson, a slave owner and robber of Native American lands, would have prevented it from happening, I wept for my country.
In my lifetime we have not had a president this stupid and ignorant. There have been many I disagreed with and objected to but not one was ever as dumb as a rock. This man is the first.
To not know our history as a nation, to believe that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese, to not know that being the leader of the free world is a hard job, to believe that Barack Obama was born in Kenya and his birth certificate a fraud, to not realize that health care is complicated issue, to continuously suggest that Mexico will pay for a wall when they have made it clear that they won’t, to reach out to dictators with praise and invite them for a visit is incalculably stupid and dangerous.
America has stood, even with all of our imperfections, as a beacon of freedom and democracy. We have a history of championing the underdog. We don’t always get it right, and our errors have cost millions of lives. We have saved millions more. It is not an equation that should make us proud, but it is one that shows our effort and that our hearts are often in the right place. As we grow, and hopefully learn from our mistakes, we have mostly stood for the right of people to be free to self-determine their government.
Our covert and not-so-covert support of dictators in the past is not something to be proud and certainly not something to emulate. Yet Trump praises men who are brutal killers. Vladamir Putin, Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, and Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi are all men who stand for everything that we as a nation fight against. They are not leaders who endear themselves to their people. They rule with terror.
These men have no regard for human rights, and to praise them is an affront to every man and women who has given his or her life for this country for the very purpose of remaining free from tyranny.
But the saddest thing is that Trump’s lack of knowledge, his ignorance and his stupidity was there for all to see before he was elected. These recent ramblings should come as no surprise to anyone who has been paying attention. And to all those who thought a 70-year-old man was going to change once he became president, well all I can say is that your ignorance is showing. Trump has never shown a capacity to learn.
He is a huckster who was born into wealth and did okay for himself. His ability to make millions off the backs of workers he refused pay and by offshoring jobs and hiring foreign workers is not something that should be praised.
Many did praise him and vote for him, as they somehow also made an equation that being a business man would be good for the economy. These same voters, as did Trump, failed to realize that being a CEO is far different than being President and that governing requires a completely different skill set.
It is no surprise that he has tried to issue executive order after executive order because that is what he is used to. It is no surprise that being president is harder than he thought it would be. The debacle on the repeal of Obamacare showed the difference between being able to call the shots and govern. No, Mr. President, it isn’t easy, and your lack of knowledge, education and critical thinking imperil this nation.
Knowing this and being able to live with it, to recognize that we very well may have to endure four years of this man’s often incoherent word salads is hard to imagine. Obviously, that is not the worst of it as I have seen many posts by people who are truly terrified they may lose their health insurance and others who are worried he may start a nuclear war.
How will we manage to not only survive but thrive in this new and unrecognizable America?
Stay focused on what in our lives makes us happy, what makes us strong, and what brings us joy. In order to stand, march, organize and lobby when we must, we need to take care of ourselves. Sometimes it is important to take a break. Hopefully, the world won’t end that day. Too much Twitter and Facebook and daily diatribes on Trump and his swamp are not healthy.
In order to create a different future a world that is but greater than our past, we must remind ourselves that our lives are precious. We must remember our wonder and allow our love for our fellow human beings to guide us, not our anger nor our hate if we hope to create a better future and greater nation.