The True Trump Legacy
Wow, who would've guessed. Contrary to any real worldly expectations, President Trump really could end up making America great again! It may not be in a way that many would have predicted, and while many of us would not want to be in a place that he thinks is "Great" (1850?), this new President has brought us some perhaps badly needed clarity as to what we want and don't want in a country or in a President.
Much like the realizations brought to us by George "W" Bush; that we don't want thousands of our troops and many tens of thousands of Iraqis to die in an unwarranted war, that we can't ignore warnings about a potential 9/11 type of attack, and don't want to endure a major economic meltdown and lasting recession, our newest President may have begun to raise the level of acuity in our country toward presidential performance.
We now know how cringe-inducing it is to have a President who spouts off without a filter, who hates to read, and can't be bothered to educate himself about even recent history. We are painfully aware, at the first anniversary of his huge inauguration, that we have a president who doesn't value "thinking things through", and doesn't have strong, or really any convictions, making him vacillate to whatever opinion he has most recently heard from others, like Steve Doocy of the Fox and Friends morning show.
He's illuminated how not to treat our allies and enemies. He's illustrated succinctly how disastrous it can be to speak, and tweet, compulsively. He's called people from other countries criminals and rapists, and referred to other countries as shitholes. Out loud.
He has reminded us that a vacuous President, without a moral compass or even an agenda, other than increasing the wealth of himself, his family, and the other cool kids in the one percent, provides the perfect medium for every Cabinet and Congressman to pursue their own individual agendas, whether that be siphoning the nation's resources off to cronies or stripping consumer and environmental protections.
President Trump has shown us that we don't need family members and other unqualified people mucking about in our domestic or foreign policies. But he has done much more than that.
He's restored the whole concept of fact checking and forced many Americans to look deeper than the latest sound bites for their truth. He's forced news organizations to explain things in more detail and maybe even begun making responsible journalism great again.
He's has also, almost singlehandedly, illuminated the dire need for ensuring the integrity of our elections and voting rights.
One of his least-acclaimed accomplishments is to have made bigotry, misogyny, and racism embraceable. In doing so he has outed those among us that are the racists and sexual harassers, where they hide, and the dog whistles they use, so that we may turn our backs to them. He has revealed how badly we need to stand up for our brothers and sisters who are minorities.
He has made some people become the adults the country so badly needs. Republicans and Democrats alike have found among their ranks people who have been forced to speak for the rule of law, for justice, and for compassion. He's even brought the two Koreas together! And by abdicating the mantle of global American leadership he's forced other nations and their leaders to step up.
But the biggest thing he has accomplished was to lead congressional Democrats to finally begin to find their voice, a characteristic that was almost nonexistent during the Obama administration. Maybe now forceful leaders will emerge and take on all that is wrong with the current state of a once-proud nation.
He's been a leader in showing what can happen when a party hijacks our democracy and how it requires only a period of complacency and laziness to allow that to happen. He's shown that anyone who isn't taking a stand, speaking up, fighting back, and voting, will be to blame for the final nails in the country's coffin.
The new President has effectively led us to some foul water. We, of course, are the ones charged with deciding whether to drink it. Only when the rest of us have decided to join the fight to once again make our country a beacon for justice, for actual equal opportunity, and true liberty, will the full impact of the Trump era be felt.
Then, of course, he will take credit for that as well, and we, in turn, will surely be inclined to give it to him.