The Americans, I am sure, are a people of above average intelligence, yet I have this niggley naggley fear that they could vote for Donald Trump as their next president. Surely, I say to myself, anyone can see through the bluster and bullshit of his aggressive, xenophobic and ruthless neanderthal behaviour and attitudes.
But I have to remind myself, these are the people who voted in George W. Bush – twice!
I have a feeling Trump’s popularity is in part a reaction to the Obama period. Obama is, after all, quite meek and mild in comparison, with a reputation, not justified in my opinion, for getting nothing done. But Obama has made silent progress on many issues, including getting gun control at least on the agenda. We must remember that deeply intractable issues such as that, and the reform of healthcare, may take several presidencies to properly achieve, as it was with the abolition of slavery.
I suspect the same is also true of Guantanamo Bay. With the best will in the world, it may take a long time to resolve that thorny issue too.
Usually I try to ignore matters I can’t influence or have any control over, as in this case (I have no vote in America), but I cannot help worrying about this guy. He’s volatile, impulsive, highly aggressive, bent on ego-aggrandisement and completely devoid of any diplomacy skills, and let’s not forget the US President is also Commander-in-Chief with his finger on the nuclear button. That makes him dangerous to the whole world.
Moreover, he has clearly demonstrated stongly racist beliefs and he appears to regard women with absolute contempt. He has to be one of the most unconscious and unempathic characters I have ever witnessed in the public arena. Would you trust him with your daughter?
As those of us who are old enough to remember the film Dr. Strangelove will realise, it would be all too easy for World War Three, and perhaps total annihilation, to be started “by accident” if we have a loose cannon in the White House.
I sincerely hope each American voter will think this through carefully before voting, and not just vote on a knee-jerk reaction or from generations of party loyalties. I suspect that’s what didn’t happen with Brexit here in the UK. Many of the voters didn’t think through the consequences before they voted.