Last night was the first Republican debate. It seems to have been more a show for Trump and his very sensitive ego than an honest and real look at the issues that are at the forefront of American politics today.
For instance, the War on Women. Trump voiced how picked upon when he was questioned about derogatory remarks he has made about women. He seems to feel strongly about the way women look. Perhaps, if elected, God forbid, he would want research started so that all female babies were beautiful and stupid. Yes, I am jesting but when he calls women animals, ugly or other insults, he is not jesting. He is showing us one of the parts of his personality. A dark section of his personality.
He complained that the female moderator was asking him inappropriate questions. Is character not appropriate in a Presidential campaign? Is that not one of the things we elect our leaders for: ideas and leadership ability, certainly, but what is that but a part of character?
I guess that Trump is a man who is used to, and requires, gentle care. His choice of words, not just in this instance, but in many public appearances before and after he announced his candidacy, is often vulgar and inflammatory. Even his re-tweets show questionable judgment. Is this someone whom the American People can trust on the international stage? Is this someone who will meet opposition with a considered, measure response, designed to keep the United States and its citizens safe? Or is this someone who will, as his history shows, respond to opposition with an off-the-cuff, possibly offensive comment which will show Americans in our worst light, possibly causing an international incident which could lead to war?
Can we, as Americans, take that chance?
As most all of you know, I am a Liberal, although in my lifetime I have voted for Republicans who deserve to be in office. I think it is very important that the man or woman that we elect to head the free world, as it is said, be someone who has the sort of temperament, the education; the finesse and the diplomacy to speak to international leaders about serious and controversial issues, without losing his temper or insulting people.
I don’t want the world to go back to thinking of us as Ugly Americans. In the 60’s, there was a best selling book called The Ugly Americans, which I read in my AP Literature class. I was horrified that we were perceived in this light. We need someone in the White House who is respectable, who is capable of diplomacy and tact; someone who can be open and honest without insulting various sectors of our population.
I’m not talking about “Political Correctness”, that supposed bane of Mr. Trump. I am talking about having the decency to treat other human beings with the respect that we all deserve, by the simple virtue of being human beings. I’m talking about showing them compassion, gentleness, and kindness, and respecting their opinions as valid, though they may differ from his own.
One of the most important things an American citizen has the right and responsibility to do is to Vote. Whom you choose to vote for is private and personal. But consider, before you cast your ballot, that whomever you elect is going to represent America to the world for four solid years.
Do we want War or Peace? Do we want to continue to marginalize our own citizens?
We should not be afraid of open, honest debate and discussion. It is when well-to-do, educated Americans who have dedicated themselves to a candidacy begin to denigrate each other and the people they meet that we begin to denigrate America in general. Candidates, all candidates at every level of government, need to finally put aside the mudslinging tactics and face the issues head on, with decency, honesty and a respect for the views of others’, as they will be expected to treat heads of state if they are elected.