America is at war on many fronts. They are not violent, for the most part, and involve economics, social injustice, financial stress, trade, nuclear proliferation and political gamesmanship. We are also at war with ourselves, Republican vs. Democrat, conservative vs. liberal, wealthy vs. middle class, men vs. woman.
President Trump has a plan to engage with every world leader, country, religious group and ethnic group that poses a risk to the US. Frankly the president has had some success in these areas and more and more Americans are beginning to appreciate his modus operandi. At times, his actions are considered to be biased, racially provocative and heartless. Trump has also been attacking unfavorable arrangements with other countries that have been in place for many years, and demanding they be amended or abrogated because they have been and continue to be unfavorable to American interests.
China is one of the president’s most important targets. It steals our technology, invokes unfair tariffs on American goods and attacks us regularly with cyber warfare tactics. How can such a nation ever be a close ally of the US?
Similarly, Russia has interfered with our elections, supported our worst enemies (Iran and terrorist groups in the Middle East) and invaded a sovereign nation (Ukraine).
The Mexican government has turned a blind eye to the tsunami of illegal aliens that pass through its country into ours. These interlopers have created huge social, political and financial problems and pitted Americans against each other.
And now Europe has concluded that the US is no longer a trusted ally, and whose stance on trade, immigration and global warming are untenable. This is occurring even after the US saved Europe twice in the 20th Century from German aggression. And to make matters worse the US has entered into treaties in which we guarantee the security of Europe while US taxpayers pay most of the costs. Some NATO members are not even spending on defense what is required by agreement, assuming the US will always protect them.
Trump, rightly, has a lot of axes to grind in all the aforementioned situations. Notwithstanding his unsavory disposition and attitude, the president is making the world a better place even as many around the globe and in the US are hypercritical of him.
What is totally unacceptable, however, is the growing war between Americans, which has become a real tragedy. Americans have the best of everything- security, prosperity, freedom, opportunity, education, health care and so much more. So why do we fight with each other so vociferously about every issue. Our national strength has been diluted, and our enemies have been emboldened.
The immigration fiasco is a perfect example of the chasm between Republicans and Democrats, Trump and Democrats, Trump and fellow Republicans and Republicans and Republicans. We need new immigration laws and policies to stem the tide of illegal immigration and to give those in the country a fair and comprehensive path to citizenship.
It’s disconcerting to see Republicans that control the presidency, the Senate, the House and the Supreme Court (conservatives generally have a 5 to 4 advantage) bickering over policy and unable to compromise with each other. Given this advantage, our government is still in state of political and legislative paralysis.
Children of illegal immigrants are being separated from their parents at the border because of arcane laws and regulations. Under no circumstances is this situation acceptable or beneficial to anyone. Interesting, every American seems to agree that changes are in the best interests of America, the illegals and the children.
Yet the progress is slow and the president’s enemies have twisted the facts and his priorities. Conversely, Trump blames Democrats for the existing laws that force immigration officials to take hurtful action (separation of children from their parents). He’s calling for new legislation and reform to deal with the problem, rather than using presidential power to install changes. [Note: Democrats think new legislation will take to long too enact.] As I write this essay, the president appears to be willing to finally use his powers to stem the tide of outrage among Americans by calling for more humane treatment of illegal children.
Conservatives believe that liberals want unencumbered acceptance of all who enter the country, for political reasons. This perspective has resulted in over 10 million illegals over the past few decades, which has damaged the certain states and facilitated the proliferation of undesirables in America including gangs, drug dealers and other felons.
So the problems persist along with life and death debates about every issue. The media has done everything possible to stir controversy and even creates “fake news” to stimulate the sale of their ideas in printed material and on TV.
So how can we change the attitudes of our politicians over time? The answer is obvious. The current leaders that dominate the political scene are both incompetent and unwilling to compromise on any issue. Most of the worst offenders have been in Washington too long. They exist in both parties and have consolidated their power in Congress with arcane laws that affect elections. Term limits are the answer. Over time Americans can recreate Congress and the presidency.
The president is not without fault, an understatement. His methods may be helpful with the worst of our enemies, but they are tearing our country apart. It’s inconceivable that the man does not recognize that name-calling and vicious tweets aren’t moving us forward. I’ve indicated that Trump will not be reelected, but his own successes may make my prediction wrong.