As I listen to Mitt Romney and the Republican party speak up against Donald Trump today (Transcript of Mitt Romney’s Speech), I feel compelled by civil duty to express my personal opinions on Donald Trump’s rise in politics.
It has been an interesting, incredible, and horrifying experience to see the rise and success of Donald Trump over the course of the Republican primary elections. When I first saw him during a Republican debate, I was greatly entertained by his theatrics and dramatic dialogue. It really was like watching a comedy show, but a reality comedy show. I had no doubt in the beginning that the American public would be able to see through his bluster, insults, and sales job. But no.
The whole progression of Trump’s appeal to the public reminds me of the rise in power of Hitler. Before Hitler came into power, he promised a lot of things to the downtrodden, and he used the Jews as a scapegoat for the country’s problems. Hitler arose from an environment where fear and anger could be used to gain power. People felt disillusioned with the government, and they hoped for a savior. Hitler had the narcissistic grandiosity to say, “Here I am. I will save you.” I see Trump using the same carrot to entice the public. Hitler thought of himself as above the law. I heard Trump tell Jeb Bush, during a debate, that if he had wanted to have a casino built in Florida, he would have. Meaning, he thought of himself as above the governing powers of that state. In other words, his wealth/power makes him above the rule of law. A leader of a democratic or republican nation does not think of himself as above the law or government. Monarchs and dictators, however, do. When Jeb Bush responded, “You would not have.” Donald Trump shoots back, “Oh, yes I could!” Narcissism in action.
When I read books or watched movies about the Holocaust, I wondered what I would have done under the circumstances. Would I try to keep my head down and stay out of trouble, or would I have the courage to speak up about it? Would I try to bring some light and sanity into the country, or would I shrug my shoulders and retreat into a state of powerlessness? When I see what is going on right now in politics, I feel as if I am reliving the beginnings of an old, horrifying chapter of history that I thought would never, ever be allowed to repeat. And certainly not in the United States of America. And I am challenged to speak up, rather than avoid the issues confronting our nation.
Everyone I know thinks Trump is ridiculous and unworthy to be president. It is obvious, isn’t it? It’s like saying the Emperor has no clothes. Don’t you see he’s naked, parading around like that? If it is not obvious, then here are just a few reasons why Trump would be ridiculous and unworthy to be president:
- He lacks the ability to be civil to his opponents. That is the whole point of politics, being able to work in a social setting without offending everyone you bump into. Trump has the opposite ability. He is an expert at bumping into people and offending everyone. These are not helpful characteristics for the president of a dog food shop, much less the president of the United States.
- He does not use logical reasoning to persuade. He uses insults. In any given debate, I lose count of all the times he insults someone. How can such an illogical, abusive person ever hope to work with anyone in relative harmony?
- He projects all his anger towards another person or group, calls them names, and blames them for problems. And he has a lot of anger and a lot of blame. A president of a free nation does not behave in this manner. Dictators do.
- He has no experience as a law maker or working in government. He does have a lot of experience bossing people around. He tried to boss around a television network, regarding who would have the right to interview during the debate, and he refused to attend the debate, when he didn’t get his way. This is how he will behave, if he becomes president, but in a larger context. Can you imagine how he will handle volatile nations whose leaders think he’s lower than the dirt on the bottom of their shoes? How do you think he will treat the issues of freedom of speech and the press, if he were to be elected?
- He denigrates people for their sex, race, and appearance. These are extremely immature defense mechanisms. But, in a political leader, this quality would be disastrous. Hitler denigrated people, and then he acted on his feelings.
- He ridicules politicians for being the puppet of millionaire donors, claiming that donors control the way lawmakers make decisions in government, missing the point entirely that he is essentially a billionaire donor running for president, holding the same mind set. To elect him would be similar to eliminating other competing special interest groups that attempt to influence government, and electing the head of one special interest group as president of the United States. Do you think that will improve our government?
I hope as the election season progresses that Trump’s tax returns and more information will surface to make him more transparent to the public, as if what we know about him isn’t enough already to help us see him as he truly is. Could the Emperor be more naked than he already is?
Let us hope we can let go of our desires and fantasies for a savior enough to let us see Trump’s true nature. As disappointing as it may be to see him as a narcissist with grandiose and empty promises, it is far less painful than to face the nation the United States will become under his reign.