As I See It: He never had a chance
Sometimes I’m really searching for an idea or a subject for my next column. Most of the time I have a subject or issue that I contemplate for weeks or more trying to find a new or interesting interpretation to shed some light on an item that is hopefully of interest to many readers.
Today I was saved by one of the programs on Sunday morning - "Sunday Morning."
The opening segment was on the “declining” reputation of the United States among the other nations of the world. Why is "declining" in quotes? It is because some feel it is a matter of great concern that our friends and adversaries are wondering how much longer we will survive given recent events – most notably the death of George Floyd and its often violent aftermath across the country.
Before I go any further, let me make it clear. The death of George Floyd was a tragedy; it was unnecessary. It was a crime. The criminal justice system will ultimately determine if it was murder. It certainly looked like murder or at a minimum, manslaughter, to me, but I don’t count. Neither do you. A 12-member jury will ultimately decide Officer Derek Chauvin’s level of guilt.
If you expected a column on racism, I’m sorry. I could tell you about an immersion in racism when a naïve Air Force lieutenant and his wife moved to South Georgia in 1969 for three and a half years. Much has changed; much has not. If we are to survive and prosper, we all – repeat all – have to change; that’s all there is to say. As I’ve asked before, to whose advantage is it to fan the flames of racism?
Back to the reputation of the United States and who is responsible.
When I was much younger than I am now, more than one person told me one of the most useless things I could do was to worry about what other people thought of me. The reason was that you could end up doing things for the wrong reason. Instead of focusing on whether something was good or bad, right or wrong, you would make a decision based on how someone else would react. Pleasing someone else became the measure of merit.
Western Europe was rebuilt via the Marshall Plan. And since then, we have spent trillions of dollars in aid to those and other European countries and supplied (and paid for) a huge contingent of U.S. Army, Air Force and Naval forces to brunt the threat of the former Soviet Union.
After President Trump was elected, he pressed NATO nations to shoulder more of the financial burden – not exactly a popular move and he did it in ways that put most of the old school diplomatic noses out of joint. He’s not a politician; he’s a hard-nosed (and not always wise in his words) problem-solving businessman. His bottom line: If they don’t like me, that’s tough.
I can live with that because it makes sense.
He hasn’t said anything definitive about the death of George Floyd yet; instead he has been focusing on returning order to the streets of our major cities. That is exactly what I would expect the president to do. He can talk and use all the words and rhetoric at his disposal, but only state governors and mayors can make it happen unless he declares a national emergency beyond the COVID-19 pandemic and invokes martial law.
That won’t work anymore than you can get some people to wear a mask covering their nose and mouth in a store that requires it.
It is now apparent that even before President Trump was elected, there were people in the federal government who were trying to make sure that didn’t happen. Anyone who can actually stand back and analyze issues, facts and actions can certainly realize the major media outlets in this country were on board in trying to destroy his credibility and reputation - and have been working to do so for his entire term. It is also no secret the entire Democrat Party has been on a quixotic quest to do the same.
He’s never had a chance; he’ll never be given a chance even if he wins a second term.
How do you think that’s going to raise our standing in the world?
Well, that’s the way I see it.