Just like my last post was pretty much discussing Senator Sanders’ positions on the issues, this one will focus on Mr. Trump, with Secretary Clinton to follow.
I will admit it was very difficult to keep myself objective as I read Mr. Trump’s “position statements” (Note: All items taken directly from Mr. Trump’s website). While he does not address income equality as its own item, there are enough points in his other positions that address some of it.
The Wall & Immigration: In this position not only is Mr. Trump advocating essentially attempted blackmail of another country, but feeds directly into the anti-immigration ideal pushed by most of his supporters. The Statue of Liberty, long an icon for our country being “the land of the free and the home of the brave.” At Her feet (currently inside the base, to protect it from the elements) is the poem written by Emma Lazarus (see below).
I don’t know about you, but when I was in high school civics class, that (along with the Pledge of Allegiance, and the Star Spangled Banner) was part of our American Dream. Even though during my high school years, we had the issue of massive numbers of refugees from both Asia and Central America. It was during the 1980s that we seemed to have given up on the idea of accepting those individuals who were “yearning to breathe free.” Much of what made America a power to be reckoned with besides our seemingly endless raw resources (which, of course, we modern Americans realize it is no longer actually endless) was that we accepted those who other countries didn’t count as important or worthy.
We’ve had many famous immigrants: Albert Einstein, Madeline Albright, John Muir, Joseph Pulitzer, Irving Berlin, “Mother” Mary Harris Jones, Neil Young, Henry Kissinger, Bob Marey, Carlos Santana, Elizabeth Arden, Audrey Hepburn, Rupert Murdoch, Bruce Willis, Antonio Banderas, Michael Caine, Nikola Tesla, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Oscar de la Renta… Heck, go look for yourself!
How many immigrant Americans would we have lost out on if we chose NOT to follow the ideal penned in our Lady Liberty’s base?
Healthcare: Mr. Trump essentially repeals Obamacare but completely ignores the main issue that it was supposed to fix – the uninsured. As a person who has lived for most of the last 20 years without consistent medical insurance, I can tell you that for those of us who have lived it NEED it because otherwise we either destroy our health or our financial health if we have ANYTHING – even something like a broken arm, let alone any chronic illnesses. He recycles the whole “let the free market do it!” cant that conservatives have been touting. The problem is, the so-called “free market” doesn’t fix the problem. In fact, the uninsured cost the average insured taxpayers far more than the issues that Obamacare created.
Trade Policies: Mr. Trump speaks to the China trade balance, but ignores the other trade policies that also make it easier to outsource our manufacturing to other countries. Essentially almost all of these trade agreements send money to other countries by hiring their people instead of our own.
Veteran Reforms: You won’t hear me complain about making sure our veterans are taken care of efficiently and fully. They have sacrificed for us, no matter what we might think of the military leaders and politicians who made them make those sacrifices. But, financial reform for our veterans (AND our serving soldiers and their families) also means we have to take a hard look at our social programs. One of the reasons that our soldiers’ families are starving is because they have to rely on food stamps just like many of us. When politicians talk about “welfare recipients,” they want us to forget that many families of our serving soldiers are among that class of people.
Tax Reform: His promises for tax reform look great, don’t they? But I see no clear process by which he intends to make this happen. He comes up against the same issue that President Obama did. In order to fulfill these promises he has to have Congress back him up. Given the plethora of conservatives who are withholding endorsement, or worse, stating clearly that they think Mr. Trump is the worst possible candidate for president, I sincerely doubt he will be able to build an alliance with his own party’s Congress-persons, let alone be able to reach over the aisle to the Democrats. You MUST have bipartisan support to be able to fulfill this promise.
Gun Control: Let’s face it, anything discussing the “Second Amendment” is about gun control. Perhaps it might be surprising to people that I am actually in support of enforcing our CURRENT gun control laws. We can’t expect that new gun control laws will make any difference if we don’t actually enforce the laws we CURRENTLY have.
Mr. Trump throws mental health issues in with this position. Yes, we do desperately need to fix our mental health industry. And, frankly, we need to keep guns out of the hands of those who actually are a danger to others because of their mental issues. But, throwing the mental health issue in with gun control simply turns it into a talking point. We have so much more that we need to fix when it comes to dealing with Americans with mental illnesses.
I find it somewhat amusing that the reasoning Mr. Trump gives for allowing our military personnel to carry guns in recruiting centers and on military bases (i.e. the amount of gun education we give a person in our military) is completely ignored in relation to gun control or concealed carry. I have always stated that my issue with guns were not with the tool itself, but the idiot behind the tool. We have required classes for a concealed carry permit, why should there not be an expectation that those who wish to own guns should be licensed to do so (requiring education, and the ability to pass a written test AND a physical test)? We already require it for driving a vehicle. Adding gun testing to the DMV, or creating a new agency along the order of the DMV should not be financially difficult.
So, there’s my opinion on Mr. Trump’s positions. Next, Secretary Clinton’s promises.