Trump annoys the British, as reaction to his retweets of a right-wing, anti-Muslim group in Britain demonstrated last week. But he’s a real danger to us Americans.
I don’t think Donald Trump is going to be invited to the wedding.
The U.S.A. is best buds with the Brits, and Prince Harry will be marrying an American in the spring, the actor Meghan Markle. But there are just some people you don’t want at your wedding.
That includes some people many of us here in the states might not want running our country — especially not someone who seems intent on ruining it.
The British have their own issues, of course, including rising English nationalism. And the politics of the two countries intersected last week when Trump retweeted three posts by the leader of a far-right-wing British group. The tweets were anti-Muslim and were fake news. British officials immediately condemned the retweeting.
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We, for the time being, are stuck with Trump, even though most of us know that’s not working out so well. Are you enjoying treading the edge with North Korea, or watching the U.S. gut its diplomatic corps and turn over its position in the world to the Chinese? Do you think making it harder for Americans to get health care is the way to bring the country together, or that cutting corporate taxes will lift up our poorest citizens?
On the last day of November, a Gallup poll of American adults found 34 percent said they approved of the job Trump is doing and 60 percent said they disapprove.
That was last week, a normal week for the administration. Trump had invited three Navajo code talkers to the White House to be honored for their service during World War II. They used their language to make military messages unintelligible to enemies. That’s one of the many benefits of having a diverse country. But Trump just had to inject something nasty into the event, a barb aimed at Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), whom he referred to as Pocahontas because she once claimed unproved indigenous heritage.
And did you notice the large portrait of President Andrew Jackson, the famous taker of Indian lands, behind the podium? Classy, right?
Also this past week there were more rumors that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson might be on his way out. Trump said no, but you never know. People are always coming and going from this administration. Then one of the people who left early in the year, Michael Flynn, Trump’s former national-security adviser, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about conversations with the Russian ambassador last December.
Imagine how the country would have reacted to any other administration being so tight with the Russians. Just last month Trump said he believed the word of Russian President Vladimir Putin over that of U.S. intelligence agencies about whether Russia meddled in the presidential election last year.
His behavior is outside the norm in big matters and small, personal and governmental.
Something’s very wrong.
His party is sticking with him because Congress wants to make ground on its agenda. Right now that includes getting into law a tax plan that will make the deficit soar, worsen already massive inequality and harm almost every segment of society except big corporations and the very wealthy.
The problem is far bigger than one man, but he is definitely a significant danger by himself.
Early this year, thousands of mental-health professionals signed a petition saying that because of serious mental illness, Trump cannot competently govern. There is also a book about the instability mental-health professionals see in him, “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 27 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President,” edited by Yale forensic psychiatrist Bandy X. Lee.
The California billionaire Tom Steyer has spent millions on ads calling for Trump’s impeachment. Maybe the Russia investigation will undo him. Maybe he’ll quit on his own, as Tony Schwartz, Trump’s co-author of “The Art of the Deal,” has predicted.
Every week is going to be full of atrocious behavior and risks to our national well-being as long as he is president. The Brits can avoid him, but, for now, we’re stuck.
One tool Americans have is the ability to support and elect candidates (especially for Congress) who recognize the danger and will stand up for the general welfare. We’re less than a year away from the congressional midterm elections. We need to make them count.