When Donald Trump was inaugurated as our President on January 20, 2017, I said that he deserved a chance to show that he was worthy of the office. I never supported him or his ideas in any way, and, from seeing his behavior and hearing him speak during the 2016 Presidential election season, I certainly didn’t see anything that would ever make me vote for him. Although I always felt that Hillary Clinton was an imperfect candidate, I thought she’d make a good President, and I voted for her. But, Trump won (albeit as a minority winner), and I thought he deserved a chance to prove that he was suited for the job.
I think I remember that, on the night he won the election, Trump stated that he realized he’d be President of all the American people. That was the last time I heard him say something like that, and he’s made it clear, since his first day in office, that he’s only working to please his “base”. I think it’s really only to please himself, and to win re-election, increasing his own sense of self-greatness.
Day after day, week after week, and month after month, with one atrocity after another committed by him and his administration, his “base” has seemed to hold strong, and alarmingly few fellow Republican office-holders, including those in both Houses of Congress, call him out on anything or dispute him. I thought the case for Trump’s impeachment was very well presented, and I was glad that he was at least impeached, but (to nobody’s surprise), the Republican majority Senate wouldn’t “convict” and remove him from office. Therefore, it’ll have to be up to the voters in November, 2020 to do what the Senate refused to do.
The several very difficult events of 2020, and Trump’s and his administration’s responses to them, have made me more optimistic that something good will come of our collective troubles—namely, Trump’s defeat in November. First was the COVID-19 pandemic, so badly mismanaged by Trump and all his cronies, and still ongoing. Then, the consequential (to COVID-19) collapse of our and the world’s economies. Both of these things deprive Trump of his major “selling points” to re-elect him. Finally, most recently, was the killing of George Floyd by the four Minneapolis policemen, the most recent of a series of similar atrocities over many years, and the one that’s provoked huge, mostly peaceful, nationwide protests that continue. This was a situation in which we’ve always hoped for inspirational, calm leadership from our President, but our current one hasn’t provided that–he’s incapable of it. While he did recognize the horror about what was done to George Floyd, he focused on the looters and “rabble-rousers” at some of the demonstrations, calling out the group called “Antifa”, and stressing the need to quell the demonstrations, by armed force (including the US Army) if necessary. A recent CNN report tells of a white nationalist group that “impersonated” Antifa, and incited rioting in Antifa’s name (I deplore the looting and property destruction from the radical right, the radical left and the simple “rabble rousers” who do it for fun). Knowing what happened in 2016, would anybody be surprised if Russia played a part in instigating the more violent actions in the demonstrations?–I wouldn’t! A well-televised event a couple of nights ago showed National Guard forces using tear gas and similar things to force the movement of a peaceful demonstration in Lafayette Park (across from the White House), to enable Trump (after his short speech) to walk to St. John’s Church for a photo-op holding a bible. I think it was especially this event that caused the strong rebuke of Trump by several important military figures, most importantly and sharply General James Mattis, Trump’s first Secretary of Defense, and Mark Esper, his current one. I would certainly hope (but not bet) that what they’ve said will be enough for at least some Republican Senators and Congressmen to say something critical of the President.
Finally, I did see Joe Biden’s speech a few days ago at the Philadelphia City Hall, and thought it was wonderful. I think it’s the best one I’ve heard Biden give. In every way, it showed that he is the inspirational and thoughtful leader that we need, and that Trump can never be. The polls I’ve seen have been looking more favorable to Biden as the days go by too. All of these things make me increasingly hopeful that he can win. As bad as Trump has been, getting worse every day, November can’t come fast enough for me.