Trump qualifies as the most un-American president in our history, which would be ironically humorous given his tendency to wrap himself in the flag, if it weren’t also so harmful to our democracy.
Our forefathers gifted us with a marvelously creative system of government that sought a delicate balance between the common good and individual rights that requires an equal check and balance of power.
However, Trump consistently derides the legislative and judiciary branches when they don’t agree with him. That is un-American.
Trump criticizes legal judgments that go against him and believes himself above the law. That is un-American. Trump steadily criticizes the media when coverage is critical of him. That is un-American.
Trump governs by appealing to prejudices and fears, scapegoating minorities and immigrants, and failing to distinguish between friends and adversaries. That is un-American.
Trump is not bothered by Russia’s interference at the very core of our democracy, our election process; derides United States intelligence agencies; and sides with dictators. That is disloyal.
True American presidents lead by understanding that everyone contributes to our country, don’t take liberties with fact or science in pursuit of a political purpose, and don’t see religion through a particular political lens.
There are some who, frustrated with the state of our country in general or their own lives in particular, admire Trump’s bullying and belligerent style, perhaps believing it necessary to get things done in Washington. Such behavior, coupled with a populist message, can seem appealing during these worrisome and changing times in our world. But to those who believe so, I say review how American democracy was intended to work and learn what real American Presidents did in the past to lead and to strengthen our democracy so admired in the world. Now that would really be American.
Joseph Donofrio, Ph.D.