Since the election of President Trump, the country has been transformed, unfortunately, for the worst in all aspects. Every day, it is becoming apparent that Trump is failing in conducting his basic duties, and the country is moving from one crisis to another. His lack of leadership characteristics are becoming quite clear to everyone. The events of recent days have once again proved that Donald Trump is incapable of leading the country, especially in times of disasters and emergencies.
Almost two weeks have passed since the country witnessed the inhumane killing of yet another black man at the hands of law enforcement. The victim, George Floyd, was choked to death under the knee of a white police officer in Minneapolis. Such incidents are not uncommon and continue to occur in almost every major city in the United States, with some police officers using violence against minorities, often resulting in death. Only a small fraction of such cases receive attention from the media and the public. In the case of George Floyd, the reaction was swift, as the event took place in broad daylight and in the presence of cell phone cameras.
Immediately after the sickening scenes first appeared on TV screens and on social media, protests erupted in Minneapolis. A small group of extremist agitators taking advantage of the situation set the police station on fire. Many buildings and stores were burned and looted, causing extensive damage. Similar scenes were reported in other cities where demonstrators took to the streets.
Such events occurred under previous US presidents as well, and their first reaction has always been to call for calm and unity among the people, showing compassion to the victims in an effort to alleviate the situation. President Trump has taken the opposite course of action. “When looting starts, the shooting starts,” was his first reaction, threatening the peaceful protesters and pouring gasoline on the fire. He then accused the local authorities of being too lenient with the protesters and called on them to “dominate the streets.” When peaceful demonstrators gathered in front of the White House, he threatened to send the military into the cities, an action that was used on very rare occasions throughout history. Afterwards, the crowds were violently dispersed from the streets of Washington DC, so that he can walk to a church, across from the White House, to take a photo with a Bible in his hand.
After each of Trump’s provocative statements and actions, the demonstrations gained momentum, spreading from coast to coast, involving young men and women of all races and backgrounds. Demonstrations also took place in many European capitals, condemning the racist behavior of the US police.
The ugly scenes that transpired on the streets of this country were a setback for American democracy. United States has lost its moral high ground to lecture other nations about freedoms and rights of protesters. From now on, the State Department has no claim to defend demonstrators in Hong Kong, Moscow or Tehran, not because the protester’s demands are unjust, but because Trump’s America has failed in upholding the principles that this country is based on. In short, the US has been discredited in the eyes of the world, with lasting consequences.
The failure of Trump’s America to deal with the social unrest was preceded with the ongoing health crisis the country is immersed in. The initial denial of the warning signs of the COVID-19 pandemic and lack of preparation has caused the United States to register the highest number of deaths in the whole world. Last week, when that number reached 100,000 the head of state did not even bother to personally offer his condolences to the victim’s families and the public in general.
The list of failures in Trump’s America is too long to count. The daily scandals, the violations of the law, the encouragement of violence, the tolerant attitude towards racial discrimination, the removal from office of high-ranking and law-abiding officials, and corruption have been the hallmarks of the Trump administration. Until recently, the only issue Trump could claim credit for was the economy, which he inherited from his predecessor and was able to maintain. Even that is now in ruins with over 40 million Americans applying for unemployment in the last three months.
The long-standing principles of respect for the law have been gradually diminishing under Trump. Since the day he took office, he has been sowing divisions among the different segments of the country. The past three and a half years have shown that Trump’s America was a failed experiment that must come to an end. The sooner the better.