Dr. Ben Carson, the prominent African-American neurosurgeon and former presidential candidate, endorsed and continues to endorse Donald J. Trump for president. Perhaps this is because they share similar views on Muslims. Carson has been quoted as saying he would be uncomfortable with a Muslim President. Please recall that Trump stated that he wanted to ban all Muslims from the United States. Think about that for a moment. Last Friday, August 5th, the opening ceremonies for the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro were held; Syrian athletes were applauded given the plight of their country. Some athletes who had fled war-ravaged countries were allowed to compete under the Olympic flag as the refugee team. Under a Trump presidency, if the Olympics were held in the United States, such an out pouring of hope would not have been allowed to occur.
Omarosa Manigault, reality TVcelebrity, recently announced that she has been selected to head Donald Trump’s African American outreach. This will be a particularly difficult task given the fact that her candidate is only polling a one percent of African American support. I might add that that one percent is a disturbing figure. Why would any African American want to support Trump for the presidency of the United States? Why would any self-respecting African American want a job of trying to persuade African-Americans and other people of color to support Trump? Donald Trump’s son, Donald Trump, Jr., recently made a campaign stop in Philadelphia, Mississippi on behalf of his father. While there, he essentially stated that he had no problem with Mississippi or any other southern state flying the “Confederate Flag.” He stated that it was only a heritage issue. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan has constantly distanced himself from the racist language of Donald Trump. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has done the same. Yet, they continue to support Trump for President. Let us not forget that Trump rose to national political prominence as the Birther in Chief. His call for the nation’s first Black President to produce a birth certificate was racism par excellence. Consequently, President Obama finds Republican leaders’ continued support of Trump mind-boggling and disturbing. The President stated that responsible Republican leaders must say, at some point, that enough is enough. That point has not come yet. Yes, Donald Trump is a national disgrace. Moreover, I find those in positions of leadership, who continue to support him, disgraceful.
Franklin Roosevelt came to power amid the Great Depression. He also led America during World War II against major fascist forces. Harry Truman dropped the atomic bomb on Japan. President Dwight Eisenhower had to send federal troops to Little Rock, Arkansas in order to enforce school desegregation. In short, he had to face down states’ rights advocates who insisted on racial segregation and inequality. John Kennedy experienced the Bay of Pigs fiasco and the Cuban Missile Crisis. Lyndon Johnson took America deeper into the Vietnam War. The deadliest urban riot, up to that time, also broke out on Johnson’s watch. Richard Nixon had to resign the presidency based on his involvement in the Watergate burglary. Nixon came to power in 1968 as the “law and order” President who was the voice and representative of the “silent majority.” Donald Trump is echoing these same themes in his candidacy. He is not plagiarizing Nixon. He is telling us exactly who he is quoting. President Carter endured the Iran hostage crisis and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. President Reagan lost 241 marines in Beirut, Lebanon. Reagan also endured the Iran-Contra scandal. The deadliest and most costly urban disturbance happened under President George Bush. The L.A. Rodney King rebellion was only surpassed by the Watts Riot of 1965. The first war with Iraq also occurred under President George Bush. President Clinton was hapless with the simultaneous bombings of U.S. Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. Bill Clinton also launched an air war campaign in Bosnia. The World Trade Centers were first bombed during the Clinton presidency. A sex scandal resulted in Bill Clinton’s impeachment. George W. Bush was President when the World Trade Centers were destroyed from a terrorist attack. President Bush started two wars in which we are still engaged more than a decade later. Let us also not forget that the Great Recession began under George W. Bush. The specter of mass shootings seemed to reach a particular zenith during the Obama Administration. Although police have been killing unarmed Black citizens for decades, the specter of police killings seemed escalate and intensify during the Obama presidency. The killing of unarmed Black men and women prompted the creation of the Black Lives Matter Movement. Trump and Republican denigrate the Black Lives Matter Movement.
The preceding paragraph lists many crises, situations, and issues that have plagued and challenged various Presidents over the past few decades. Imagine a Trump presidency. I surmise that a Trump presidency would encapsulate all the aforementioned wars, riots, recessions, depressions, international disturbances, and domestic disturbances into one Presidency. I further surmise that a Trump presidency would essentially be the cause of such international and domestic disturbances. It is already apparent that his candidacy is quite destabilizing. America’s foreign allies are quite nervous. America’s enemies are quite giddy with the gleeful prospects of a Trump Presidency. It is extremely obvious that if Trump were to secure the U.S. presidency, then America would have to ponder the fact that it has not advanced as far as a civilization as it thought it had advanced.
Anthony Neal earned his Ph.D. in political science at Atlanta University (now Clark Atlanta University). Dr. Neal is an associate professor at State University College, Buffalo. The author of numerous book reviews and journal articles, he has had his work published in the Western Journal of Black Studies, the Journal of Black Studies, and Black Issues in Higher Education. In 2014 Dr. Neal received the university’s Faculty Appreciation Award, was named Instructor of the Year by the university’s United Student Government, and Professor of the Year by the Student Political Society in the Department of Political Science. In 2015, he published The American Political Narrative which is a succinct yet poignant narrative about the development of the American political system and what is needed to maintain it. In 2016, he will publish a book of poetry entitled “Love Agnostic | from 9/11 to Charleston”
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