I have been silent concerning the Administration of President Trump for more than two years. I decided to give him a chance; after all, no one, not even himself, believed he would actually be elected. He was unprepared. He went from a position where he could say or do just about anything and hire lawyers to get him out of whatever fix he found himself in, to the single most important post on the face of the earth where everything is important and everything lasts.
What did it for me, what broke my camel’s back, was what many would consider a relatively small thing: our President’s failure to attend the ceremony at the cemetery for the fallen of the Battle of Belleau Wood in France during World War I. It was raining and the rain posed a “safety issue” for Marine One, the President’s helicopter, or it was too far from Air Force One, the President’s flying center of operations, or some other nonsense. (How did all the other dignitaries get to the ceremony? Did they walk, and very quickly not to be out of touch with their governments?)
Belleau Woods holds a special place in the hearts of everyone who has ever had anything to do with the United States Marine Corps. Look it up on the Internet or some other resource if you want to learn about commitment and tenacity in warfare. But, you wonder, how does that hundred-year-old battle have such an effect on a modern-day Presidency? By itself, admittedly, not that much for most people, but it just piled onto the almost daily indignities President trump heaps on his office, that, for most, sooner or later, like with me, just got to be too much.
Sure, President Trump is not the worst president we have ever had. That accusation falls upon George Bush, the Younger. But President Trump could be a much better president than he is, he just chooses not to be – and anyone can see that. And just like all those who proudly marched in the street to support President Richard M. Nixon, have now strangely, “disappeared,” in the years to come, those who placed our president in office will likewise disappear,
There was once a time when everyone would agree that our country is too strong, too stable, too huge in every positive virtue you care to name, to be seriously damaged by just one man, regardless of his position. But even when we made that statement, there were instances where danger lurked. We overcame those dangers in the past, and we will again, given sufficient time. But that is the issue. Time.
Once things moved more slowly, national and international inertia was a constant – mistakes could be detected over time and corrected, often quietly. Today, things move at the speed of electronics. And even the concepts of consideration, debate, introspection, even, dare I say it, justice, have been moved off center, bowing to speed and a mistaken sense of strength and correctness that is confused with ill-considered reflexive responding.
Our president, my President, behaves like an unprincipled 19th century businessman half of the time and an undisciplined five-year-old child the other half. He demonstrates no sense of responsibility, no sense of correctness, no sense of loyalty, no sense of repercussions nor consequences. His lack of attention to the real, continuing, tangible requirements of his office is frankly astounding to me. I was sure he would modify his behavior once he actually understood where he was. Once he understood his duty as President of the United States of America, he would grow.
I was wrong.
In wary and embarrassed silence, I have watched President Trump’s daily antics and wondered which personality half – the profit-driven robber baron half, or the juvenile sociopath half – is Commander-In-Chief of our massively powerful military on any particular day.
I have heard that we can rely on those thoughtful and patriotic persons around our president to be sure nothing…tragic happens as a result of some irrational response to a provocation or some angry tantrum our President might momentarily manifest. I am fairly sure he would be controlled in such circumstances, but I am not certain, and I am concerned.
I am silent no longer.
What about you?