Earlier this year, I published an article on this blog about Donald Trump and his election to the American Presidency. A few weeks have gone by and, rather predictably, the world seems to have gotten ever more hysterical about his election. The first week of his Presidency saw global protests, the firing of the Attorney General and outraged colleagues and friends hopping with rage at the thought of this man holding power for another second. Although I find the man distasteful and disagree in large part with his politics, I have found myself more drawn to an examination of why everyone seems so hopping mad at a democratically elected leader of a supposedly friendly country.
The obvious place to start is Mr Trump’s rash decision-making process. In a world which supposedly purports to value logic, Mr Trump is a decidedly ‘shoot first, question later’ type of politician, the like of which few have seen before. For as long as I can remember, politicians in the West have been derided as weak-willed, corruptible, self-serving, arrogant and far removed from the concerns of ordinary citizens. Rather than act, they debate and philosophise whilst the countries that they claim to lead gradually decay and collapse.
Mr Trump is different! He says what he thinks (no Political Correctness here!) and then HE ACTS! Sure, he may get a few things slightly wrong, but how bad is it really? No-one has died, right? He’s decisive and quick to ‘stick it to the establishment’.
American’s are being taken for fools by terrorists; taken for fools by the Mexicans and Chinese; taken for fools by the whole world and PRESIDENT TRUMP IS HERE TO SAVE THEM!
In case you thought I’d lost my mind, I don’t really believe this. Take a look at a few of his policies.
- A 2,500-mile long wall across the border with Mexico. If you think that’s a sensible use of American resources, you need your head examining. Seriously? Tens of thousands homeless, poverty and crumbling infrastructure left, right and centre and THAT is the best you can come up with?
- A temporary ban on travellers from several Muslim-majority countries. The citizens of whom have never attacked the USA or declared any interest in doing so. Although this is supposed to prevent terrorism, the fact that they’re also the only Muslim countries in which President Trump has no business interests seems somewhat suspicious.
- Firing the Attorney General for disagreeing with the above ban. This hardly speaks to the time-honoured notion of an independent judiciary.
- Buying ‘American first’. Sounds great – I often lambast our own government for not buying British first. But the reality is that we live in a global economy. America has lost much of its industrial and manufacturing base. That isn’t going to come back just because President Trump tells it to.
I could talk about the sanity of these policies until the cows come home – indeed, I may release a longer article on each of the above policies in time, but for now, my point is simply that these do not appear to be the well-considered policies of a rational government machine. If your aim is to reduce illegal migration of Mexicans, do you think a wall will stop them? The UK is entirely surrounded by ocean and we have the same problem here (illegal migration).
If you’ve got fears about Islamic terrorists, then why not all terrorists, why not all deaths? Multiple reports lay out in excruciating detail that the majority of terrorist incidents in the US are caused by native citizens – not immigrants. Likewise, the more deaths are caused by non-terrorist related incidents (domestic violence, for example) than are caused by terrorists.
If you believe in the rule of law – which I presume President Trump does – after all, he seems mightily concerned about criminals from other countries and illegal migration – then why dismiss your AG? Surely, for a legal system to be effective, it must apply equally to all citizens; irrespective of whether the President agrees with an individual ruling or not.
As you can tell, I’m not exactly a big fan of President Trump. I find him brash, offensive and thoroughly unstatesmanlike at a time we need solid thinking and reliable action from our politicians. Having said that though, I do have a major problem with these demonstrations.
The hypocrisy of it all
There are many qualities and values which I try to emulate, but one of the most important to me is consistency. When a person tells me they believe something, whatever that may be, all that I ask is that it is a well-considered, logical opinion and that it is consistently applied to all that the person says and does. Sadly there has been something these protests which I find hypocritical.
When Syria gasses their own citizens; are there global protests? When Russia annexes the Crimea, are there global protests? When China imprisons feminist activists for talking about domestic violence, are there global protests?
When the UK lays down spikes to prevent the homeless from sleeping in doorways, are there global protests? When the IMF pushes Greece further under an unbearable rock of debt, are there global protests? When the African Union decides to quit the International Criminal Court, are there global protests?
The answer, of course, is no.
If we protested about every indignity committed against humanity, we’d never stop. Instead, we bury ourselves in cat videos, celebrity gossip and the latest Hollywood thriller. But my question is this. If we can’t be bothered to get outraged about all of the above – and believe me, I could have kept going for pages – but if we can’t be bothered about that, then why about Trump?
He was democratically elected (there is a query about Russia, but when he declared the polls as rigged, the Left laughed him out the room – so why not the other way around?).
He hasn’t killed anyone.
He hasn’t stolen state funds.
He hasn’t waged a war or genocide.
Infact, as far as I can tell, anyone that attended one of those protests, but stayed at home during the hundreds of genocides, murders, coups, state-backed thefts and wars from the last fifty years is essentially saying this;
It’s fine for it to happen to other people, but other people aren’t as important as me. Trump might affect me, so I’ll get bothered.
You know what? How about you get bothered about all the rest! President Trump is thoroughly unsuitable to hold the Presidency; this is undeniable as being a pretty poor state of affairs. But so are war, famine, drought, the rising sea levels and pollution warnings. Whilst we’re at it, why should whether something affects us directly be a reason to care about it? We’re all people aren’t we? So why are there tens of thousands protesting in the streets every day?
It’s taken me several days to write this article; I’ve spoken to a number of colleagues and friends on the topic. I’ve tried to be as reasonable and considered as I can, but in the end, all I can see is the hypocrisy. If we consider it our right to interfere in the democratic elections of other countries and to dictate their policies, are we really any better than Russia or Syria? If we don’t, then why are there tens of thousands of people out protesting?
In my opinion, the answer is because we care about some evil more than others. We turn the other cheek when war or famine strikes Africa or the Middle East; they’re someone else’s problem, we can’t affect them. This is what we tell ourselves and it is for exactly that reason that there are these protests over Trump, but not over any of the rest.
So, in conclusion, here is my challenge to you if you’re outraged by President Trump and his gang of miscreants.
If you’re angry, then protest.
If you think you can make a difference, then make it.
If you think it’s your right, or duty, to stand up and be heard, then do so – I always have.
But please, remember that righteousness the next time you walk past a homeless person, throw a charity letter in the bin or say ‘there’s nothing I can do about it’ when a real global catastrophe strikes.