In the realms of leadership, those who know anything about the power of influence know that an entity is only as good as the person leading it. The people that make up said entity can do all they can to be good, ethical, gracious, and kind, but if the man or woman in the most prominent position lacks the common decency, aptitude, and other essential characteristics that form an effective leader, that entity is doomed. Such is the case with the United States.
Led by an incompetent, unethical, elite racist, with every divisive comment, every deceitful move, and every ill-intended decision made by Donald Trump, America sinks deeper into the pits of global isolation and further away from the dream of unity and equality that were once on our horizon.
Growing up in a religious conservative Republican environment, I’ve learned a thing or two about powerful men who have little to no checks and balances around them. They not only do as they please, but they are also delusional narcissists who believe that they are above the law. In fact, in their eyes, they are the law and their persuasive talk and rhetoric guides the lives of those simple enough (or smart enough depending on how you look at it) to adhere to anything that comes out of their mouths. I have seen good people who want to live fulfilling meaningful lives deterred and destroyed because of the self-serving acts of individuals they believed had their best interests at heart.
When I tell you that I have seen men get away with atrocities, I mean I have literally seen people support, praise, and unconditionally love them without regard to the evils they have done. Needless to say, I also know a thing or two about arrogant men in high places who use the cushion of their position to say and act in questionable ways without regard to the welfare of those around them. Thus this is what I know; Trump is not just bad for the fabric of American society, his station as president is bad for the safety of America society.
His recent comments about Haitians and other black nations are not surprising. They are disheartening and disgusting, but unfortunately, not surprising. Trump saying, openly and without apology to senators gathered in his Oval Office in reference to a bipartisan team’s immigration proposal, “Why do we want all these people from ‘shithole countries’ coming here” is a clear indication of who he really is; who he has been since the beginning of his bid for the presidency – A narrowed minded, mentally unstable, billionaire, predatory bigot. But more than that, the fact that he is in the position of the president and able to utter these vile things speaks to the psyche, intentions, and heart of those that put him there; of those who have been defending him, even now in the midst of his racist, controversial statements this week.
The madness of the Trump administration is appalling. At this point, journalists are fearlessly not holding their tongues anymore about his actions or the kind of person he truly is. Don Lemon is one in particular who unapologetically laid into Trump for his comments and pointed out the obvious about the 45th president of these not so United States. Lemon said on CNN Tonight,
“The president of the United States is racist. All of us all ready knew that. Today President Trump, talking with lawmakers in the Oval Office about immigrants from Haiti, from El Salvador and African said, and I quote, ‘Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here… The U.S. should bring in more people from countries like Norway… why do we need more Haitians? Take them out.’ This is who Donald Trump is. This is what he thinks. This is a man who, in the Oval Office meeting last year, said… Nigerian immigrants should… go back to their huts… all Haitians immigrants have AIDS.”
Lemon’s unrelenting on air “read” and protest of Donald Trump is a poignant look at the relationship the American media has with the current administration. Along with that, it gives a look into the pulse of the American people. We are tired, we are weary and we are in desperate need of real, unbiased leadership.
From the beginning, it was clear that Donald Trump is not fit to be president. But his lack of ability to effectively perform in the role goes beyond his inexperience in global politics. Indeed, his thoughts on women, black and brown people, the poor, LGBTQ and more reveal his overall inexperience at being a decent human being; a pre-requisite I would think for someone wanting to lead a diverse nation.
Trump campaigned on a promise to return American to a disillusioned former glory that certain segments of our civilization believe should be reality. But what he and his supporters have to realize is this – We are not a country of one racial, socioeconomic group. We are a mixture of people from all walks of life with different cultures and experiences. There is no changing that.
The fight that Trump and his supporters put up in efforts to erase the contributions of black and brown people of various African ethnicities is futile. It is pathetic and anyone who supports him, at this point, is tantamount to his views and every racist, revolting thing he does. There is no separating what he says and his actions from his intentions. He is exactly what we see and hear.
In the religious organization I grew up in, for 14 years I watched as the leaders talked about people behind closed doors. I was privy to their superiority complexes and had first-hand knowledge about the way they framed situations to work in their favor. As such, I have found this fact to be true – it’s easy to sit around and say nothing because you feel powerless against them or to be so outraged that you become numb, but to affect the kind of change that actually makes a difference and turns the tide in favor of the greater good, in the words of Don Lemon, “It’s more important to be strategic than outraged.”