Naked Opinion Top Trending

Why Can’t Donald Trump become American President?

Is the 2016 Presidential Race a reflection of our worst?

If Donald Trump can’t be President because he is a sexist, there has been no shortage of sexist Public Servants throughout our history, says Adrian Rivera

When Donald Trump announced his candidacy in June of last year, most people wrote him off as a joke. A man who identifies people of Mexican-American Ancestry with rapists and other criminals can’t become President of the United States. A man who seeks to identify and catalogue every single Muslim in our country surely would not be elected to the highest office in the land. A man who personifies fear-mongering, disrespect, and downright hatred had a snowball’s chance in hell of becoming the leader of the free world. If you do not believe, just ask Mitt Romney.

Why can’t Donald Trump become president?

But why is our immediate answer no? Why can’t Donald Trump become president? If it’s because he is a “racist,” as many believe, he wouldn’t be the first U.S. President or Government Official to harbor such hatred, or at least have distaste for certain groups of people. Woodrow Wilson is notorious for his bigoted views towards African-Americans, resegregating the Civil Service and hosting Ku Klux Klan members at the White House. Strom Thurmond, the longtime U.S. Senator from South Carolina, never renounced his segregationist views and opposition to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Six Months after his death, it was revealed that he had sired an illegitimate child with an African American maid at the age of 16. And finally, all those who believe that President Obama is not a Christian or was not born here, are in my eyes, racists.

Trump is not the first sexist public servant in American history.

If Donald Trump can’t be President because he is a sexist, there has been no shortage of sexist Public Servants throughout our history. Women’s suffrage in the U.S. is not even a century old. If Donald Trump cannot be President because he lacks expertise, Representatives and Senators make decisions about things they know little about every day.

Sen. Inhofe of Oklahoma is the Chairman of the Committee on the Environment and Public Works, yet he holds no degree in anything science related. Consequently, he believes that Global Warming and Climate Change are liberal myths, since it continues to snow in Oklahoma. He proved this by bringing a snowball onto the Senate floor.

I believe that Sen.Inhofe and his experience, or rather lack thereof, are the rule, not the exception. And finally, if Donald Trump cannot and will not be President because the thought of him in the Oval Office is just too preposterous and outrageous to consider seriously, I would say that that is not a good enough reason. I think we believe our current Democracy to be a well oiled machine, when in actuality, it is quite the opposite.

American ideals: freedom, equality and all that jazz.

I think most American’s are unaware of the fact that we have a tendency to romanticize; that is, we like to make our history kinder, believe ourselves to be freer, tell ourselves that our ideals are easily within reach. We envision the American Revolution as the beginning of world history. We see slavery as an unfortunate afterthought in the road to national glory as opposed to the gruesome tale of rape, pillage, and plunder that it really is. And with our victories in World War II and the Cold War, the end of history was in sight — America would live on forever, if not in reality than in the ideals of freedom, equality, and all that jazz. This is what we have told ourselves and this is what we have been told — exceptionalism, superiority, and infallibility are our thesis.

The 2016 Presidential Race seems to be the antithesis of all that; how can a country be exceptional, superior, and infallible when you have one party that uses fear as its primary motivator, a lifelong public servant who is having trouble winning because she wants to stay the course, and a political outsider who has brought to light the glaring inequalities, problems, and anger of our country(Bernie Sanders, not Trump)? The American Legend has it that America is the land of the free and the home of the brave. That the only thing we have to fear is fear itself. That in America, we do things not because they are easy, but because they are hard!

The 2016 candidates and their platforms fly in the face of all of this — except for perhaps one. The fundamental question that has been brought to light because of the race is this: Are we truly brave? Are we as fearless as we say we are? Are we resolute, stalwart, strong? Or is the 2016 Presidential Race a reflection of our worst?

Is the 2016 Presidential Race a reflection of our worst? An anomaly, aberration, inconsistency, or is it a reflection of who we really are, and who we have been all along? Share your thoughts with us! 

25 Comments

Click here to post a comment

  • That was a great question and believe the right answer. Most business people make great leaders. Trump has had my vote since day one. — finally some intelligent recognition.

    Thank you Mission Tx – proud of u.

    • Hi Anne,

      I’m so glad you commented, it makes me very happy that people are interacting with viewpoints different than their own. That being said, I think you may be missing the point of my article — while Donald Trump is racist, misogynistic, and downright mean, America has a long history of politicians who were racist, misogynistic, and mean. Just because he is those things won’t stop people from voting for him, although I believe it should. America is great when we have accepting, hopeful, and pragmatic people in office, and Donald Trump is not those things. I hope you continue to read my articles so maybe you can see things a bit differently, and perhaps make a vote that is better for you. Thank you for contributing to the discussion, and I encourage you to do so in the future!
      -Adrian J. Rivera

  • I agree with your points about Mr. Trump, but I have to disagree with your seemingly glowing praise of Bernie Sanders, as you state that he has, “has brought to light the glaring inequalities, problems, and anger of our country.” From my perspective, at least, Senator Sanders’ appeal is not too different from Trump’s: they both tap into anger and resentment, and they both use said emotions to turn certain mathematical minorities of the population. While Trump targets Mexican immigrants and Muslims, racial/religious minorities, Sanders targets the 1%, who, while not a racial minority, constitute a small portion of the population (1% of it, in fact). I find the rhetoric of both candidates equally disturbing: scapegoating a small amount of the population for the problems of the whole is not only foolish, but also dangerous. Admittedly, Sanders has not incited any physical violence, so there is a distinction between the two. Ultimately, I think that this election is a reflection of our worst, but reflections of our worst aren’t unprecedented: people have turned to demagogues or submitted to fear, anger, hate, and suffering throughout American history. Fortunately, I believe that in times past, we have course-corrected before turning to the Dark Side completely, as it were. I do not believe that we have ever elected a candidate due to their pandering towards resentment, although some certainly have held very prejudiced views. I can only hope that people see through the emotional manipulation of the aforementioned candidates in time. This comment may make no sense at all, I’m writing it very late at night, but I just wanted to share my thoughts. And overall, I really like this article. I’d love to have a discussion in the comments.

    -Alex

    • Alex,
      Thanks for the comment! Love that you are stimulating discussion. I agree that Sanders’ appeal is not different from Trumps’, and I would forgive those who associated bringing “to light the glaring inequalities, problems, and anger of our country” with Trump for Sanders, or vice versa. Yes both are tapping into anger and resentment, but Trump blames immigrants and foreign countries for the problems of America’s Working Class while Sanders blames the oligarchs that control the American Political System and the Economy. Between those two purportedly guilty parties, who should we side against? Abused Farm workers and factory slaves on the other side of the world, or people and organizations like the Koch Brothers and the Big Banks? And while I won’t say whether this is a reflection of our best or our worst, as it is up to the reader to decide, America has never made someone like Donald Trump “President” (Substitute Italics for the Quotation Marks.) What you call emotional manipulation, I would call tapping into people’s genuine fears and concerns, however serious or irrational they may be. What is irrational and what is fair is up to you to decide. Glad you enjoyed it, and I hope you join us next week when we discuss the hypocrisy of the Republican Party! 🙂
      -Adrian J. Rivera

      • Call me naive, but I don’t feel that we live in the oligarchy that Senator Sanders implies that we live in. Are there corporations that finance campaigns in exchange for special deals inserted into legislation? Yes, and that is unacceptable. But acting as if big donors determine campaign outcomes is simply not true. Did well-financed Jeb Bush manage to get anywhere? How about Mitt Romney in 2012?

        • Bush lost because unlike the Democratic base, the Republican voting base really is making a stand this time. Trump, for all his flaws, really is a threat to the political class. Sanders, unfortunately, is likely to be another “nice guy who finishes last”, and then gives a half-hearted endorsement of Clinton because – OMG Trump!

          I’ve no particular love of either party base, for many of the same reasons you express. I have no problem with Mexicans, and I don’t think being rich is inherently evil; but I still say the establishment, in the long run, is worse.

        • I wouldn’t call you naive, but I think Income Inequality is a big problem as it stands now, and it will only get worse unless we take measured steps to solve it. The Koch Brothers pledged to spend 900 Million on this election, and while I really like your points about Mitt Romney and Jeb Bush, think about the congressional races that are influenced by dark money. At the end of the day, whoever wins the presidency has garnered the support of the people, regardless of how much they spend — Jeb Bush and Romney are proof of that. But the winning of congressional races is more insidious, and I would say that money has an a more significant impact on those races. That combined with gerrymandering makes all but a few congressional races settled before anyone gets to the polls. If we look at the 2012 House Race, Democrats received 1 million more votes nationally than Republicans, though Republicans still won 33 more seats in the House, cementing their majority. This happened due to a variety of causes, though most point to gerrymandering as the cause. If we go back to 2010, we see the flooding of money into statehouses, and the winning of said statehouses by the Republicans, which eventually led to these gerrymandered districts and the current obstructionist congress we have. Call it what you’d like, but to me it seems like a miscarriage of Democracy. Once again, thanks for the contribution! It is always welcome 🙂

          • Thank you for the lengthy response, Adrian. I previously had a vague understanding of the idea that people like the Koch Brothers had a ton of influence in the individual House elections. I’m neither a fan of nor an opponent of Citizens United: I don’t think it’s necessarily fair, but honestly, as someone who tends to be more centrist, I tend to agree with a lot of the corporate-backed establishment candidates.

  • In no way is trump racist. When he said “when mexico sends its people (they dont send anyone btw) theyre not sending their best”. As soon as he said “they’re not sending their best” he was talking about the criminals that come over the border. Texas deported around 2k illegals on rape charges last year. Around 80 percent of women that come over the border are raped as well. Anyone that thinks what he said about mexicans is racist lacks critical thinking skills. Why doesnt anyone bring up how trump wants to expose the 28 pages of the 9/11 report and wants peace with russia (most important thing above all else) and wants to lower taxes. Bernie wants to raise taxes. Bernie is a loyal supporter of zio israel. He was all for giving billions to them in foreign aid and supports the bombing of gaza. He also said isis is a result of climate change lmfao come on now. Sexist he is not. He has hired many women in his businesses. Women suffrage? Men get raped more. Men have higher suicide rate. Men more likely to die at work. Women are more likely to have child custody over a man. Women get shorter prison sentences than men for the same crime. Men are 99.9% of combat casualties. Men 3 times more likely to be homeless. Bernie wants president assad out and to do that you either get through the russians or arm the terrorist groups in the region like the obama administration is along with a few other countries. And about the muslim ban. It would only be temporary until we can properly vet them. Nothing wrong with that. Look whats happening in europe with all the rape by muslim migrants and isis has said they would infiltrate using refugee population. If i had a choice, i would not let any migrants in coming from that region. Paris germany and san bernardino were enough to prove how bad it was letting them in. Go to david dukes youtube channel and watch his trump videos they are very informative. Subscribe to amtv and paul joseph watson to be informed.

    • Hello Juan,

      Thank you for your comment! I appreciate the discussion — however, I did have a few problems with it. Lets start with the “deporting 2000 illegals on Rape charges.” Throughout History, we can see how minority groups are vilified in order to make the majority feel better, and the “taking of our women” mindset is a common one. When Slavery was still a legal institution, the fear of slaves being set free played no small factor in such fierce denial of the abolitionist movement — what would they do if they were free? If you were a Southerner, you knew that they would steal your jobs, steal your property, and steal your women. This racist and xenophobic rhetoric wasn’t just limited to the South — when a few hundred newly immigrated Irishmen were conscripted in New York to fight for the Union in the Civil War, so great was their fear that the freed slaves would come North and steal their homes, their jobs, and their women, that the Irishmen burned down an orphanage with more than a hundred black children in it. Keep in mind that these were poor, Irish immigrants, who held the lowest station in American Society besides the slaves, similar to how many of Trump’s supporters fill the lowest class of America besides African-Americans and Hispanics. According to Business Insider, “rape and sexual assault victimization rates among females have declined during a period when the number of illegal immigrants living in the US has risen.” I scoured the Internet for your statistic, and while I found it on several sites that seemed to be just a bit biased, no reputable news source reported on your statistic. Trump wants to lower taxes on everyone, including the super-rich who pay almost nothing already, while Bernie wants to raise taxes on everyone. As a member of the middle class, my family and I would pay 2% more while the super-rich would pay significantly higher taxes. Shouldn’t everyone pay their fair share? It’s not just the people who would benefit from this tax plan that support it; just look up the “Patriotic Millionaires” who “are a group of more than 200 Americans with annual incomes over $1 million and/or assets of more than $5 million who believe that the country’s current level of economic inequality is both dangerous and immoral. They recognize that while there are many causes of inequality, the current level of economic disparity is largely the result of a multi-decade effort by wealthy elites to enact legislation designed to enhance their personal wealth and their political power.” Check out the second link attached to learn more. Concerning your attack on “male privilege,” I’m sorry to tell you that your claim that “men get raped more” is simply preposterous, and it throws out all the rest of your “Male Privilege is a lie” argument. As for the Muslim Ban, the last time that a specific ethnic group was completely banned from entering a country, the last time that a government labeled, identified, and “vetted” a specific ethnic group, two things happened: The Holocaust, and the internment of Japanese-American Citizens in labor camps. And those are just the things that spring to memory. Finally, David Duke ” is an American white nationalist, anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist, politician, and former Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.” If you are content with listening to such a man, you have every right to — just know that you are closing your mind to a very beautiful and potential filled world. I am glad that you are reading my articles, and I hope you continue to do so in the future!
      -Adrian J. Rivera
      http://www.businessinsider.com/us-sexual-assaults-unauthorized-immigration-trends-2015-7 (Immigration stats)
      http://patrioticmillionaires.org/about/ (Patriotic Millionaires)
      https://www.splcenter.org/fighting-hate/extremist-files/individual/david-duke (David Duke, who is labeled as an “Extremist”)

      • So finding out who’s coming into our country is a bad idea? We should just bring them in with open arms like they did in cologne germany? Are you really going to ignore the mass rapes in europe and san bernardino and paris shootings because it might be politically incorrect and “racist”? We should not let them in when theres a high chance that extremists will come in as well. Seems to me like youd rather see some of our people dead than be labeled racist. So because you think men arent raped more than women which is a fact, automatically the rest of the facts are also false?
        Low taxes=more businesses in america=more american jobs=more taxes being paid=less national debt
        High taxes=more businesses leaving for cheaper countries=less jobs=less people buying things=even less businesses=less taxes being paid. Anyone, ANYONE would rather pay lower than higher taxes.
        I also noticed you quoted wikipedia on david duke lmfao. I think you limited your research quite a bit. Like i said. Go on his youtube and watch his trump videos. In one of them he explains his time in the clan. 3 years, spokesman of a non violent chapter of kkk, 40+ years ago. Ive had an interesting encounter with the klan a while back at an intersection where they were asking for donations. I was at a red light and they came up to my window and said “hello good sir would you like to donate to the klu klux klan” and i told em it wasnt something i supported to which he responded “understandable sir, id like to tell you that we no longer represent hatred of other races and minorities, we have this chapter here to create a specific kind of love and we no longer represent hate and we’re trying to bring back what the southern states ment to bring with the ku klux klan originally and thats protection of our town, we go to church communities and we even have 2 black members” i was like what!!!

        • Hi Juan,

          Thanks for replying! I appreciate your input. While I did find your “men are raped more than women” fact to be false, I didn’t say the others were not true — I simply dismissed that part of the argument. And while I did cite wikipedia when researching David Duke, I also listed the Southern Poverty Law Center as a source for more information on him. Before we get into anything else, I’d like to ask you a question: What is your greatest fear for the United States of America? What is your greatest hope for America? I urge you to respond to these questions though this comment thread, and eagerly await your response! We can get into everything else after that. I’ll be waiting on that response!
          -Adrian J. Rivera

          • Worst fear would be turning into socialist venezuela or communist NK. Or where our second and first amendment rights are completely taken from us. A freedomless nation is what i dont want. Freedom is what i want. True freedom like rand paul and adam kokesh want. Last time im commenting on this thread. If you havent already watched it. Youtube: media cant stump the trump and rebuke the duke. And ken o’keefe.
            -peace

  • Why should this be a reflection of “our worst”? Would a more establishmentarian election be a reflection of “our best”? That Trump is politically incorrect, that Sanders is popular due to anger at the establishment, is this really so terrible? Is a polite permanent political class that condescendingly represents “everyone” while in practice implementing policies that favor the few…would that be our best?

    If you take a deeper look into American history, our best actually comes from this kind of incoherent populist anger. The populists of the late 19th century were disorganized, often wildly racist, and other times racially progressive, hated the Federal government while simultaneously wanting it to fix their problems. They were often led by demagogues who played on fear. Yet they started a movement that led to secret ballots, elected US Senators, progressive income tax, and eventually the New Deal. America’s prosperity following the Great Depression, our leadership of the “free world” during the Cold War, all may never have happened if not for a bunch of angry, often racist, farmers and factory workers who wanted better living conditions and compensated for their lack of political strategy or political philosophy with very mobilized anger and sheer numbers.

    • Hi Richard,

      Very good points. What I meant when I asked “was this a reflection of our worst” is to try and illustrate the fact that, for many people, none of the presidential candidates seem like viable options. “Sanders is too idealistic, Clinton will be the first president under FBI investigation at her inauguration,” and as you said “Trump OMG!” While I do wonder how Sanders intends to pass anything with a Republican controlled congress, and though the Clinton investigation worries me, it would not keep me from voting for either of them. Trump is a different story — but at the end of the day, I feel as though a significant portion of the American electorate refuses to make do with “too idealistic, too sketchy, or too outrageous.” Don’t get me wrong, each candidate has garnered record levels of support; but to say that people feel strongly about this election is an understatement, whether that be for a particular candidate or for something else. A more establishmentarian election would not be a reflection of our best, but perhaps it would be less divisive. I also ask you to recall that Thomas Jefferson once said “”A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where 51 percent of the people may take away the rights of the other 49.” He also said “A little revolution now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical.” The question is — when looking out at the crowds of Sanders and Trump, the outsiders and the populists as it were, which is the revolution and which is the mob?

      And while I do agree with you that a large part of American History has been driven by populist often racist anger, there has always been a pool of people that have been called upon to serve in the nations highest office — you cite the New Deal and much of the reforms of the progressive era, both of which were ushered in by me like Theodore Roosevelt and FDR. While progressives and populists, and sometimes a bit racist, they were also of the same rich, northeastern ilk that dominates politics. They were trained in the art of restraint; it may be beyond my knowledge, but I don’t think you could say that the Roosevelts incited the violence and hatred at specific groups as Donald Trump. Anger can be a powerful instrument of change when directed at the right people; but the question is, do you find that this anger is being directed at the correct people on the side of Donald Trump? I’ll stop here simply because the length of this response is making me chuckle — I encourage further discussion, thanks so much!
      – Adrian J. Rivera

      • You do remember the Japanese Internment camps, right? Banning all Muslims from entering, if that were even possible, morally pales in comparison to locking an entire ethnicity up.

        • A fair point — while I do recall the internment of the Japanese, I also recall December 8th, 1941, the day American declared war on Japan. What I cannot recall is when America declared war on Islam. I cannot recall when the armed forces of a specific country attacked American Soil, unless of course, we are talking about December 7th, 1941. If we are to speak of Japanese Internment, we must also remember the fact that we were at war with a formidable enemy. I do not condone the internment and oppression of any people, but I think we can understand it to an extent. We must draw a distinction between what happened on December 7th and what happened on September 11th: one was an attack sanctioned by an Imperial Government, and the other was organized by a small group extremists, not representative of the other Billion people like them on the planet. Japanese internment was an overreaction and is a terrible stain on our history — I think we can both agree that the idea of locking someone up or banning someone on the basis of their ethnicity is wrong.

    • Hello James,

      Thanks for the question! For this election here are just a few of my perspectives

      1. HIllary Clinton is extremely well qualified. Anyone who says otherwise must not be informed on the subject. Though she is qualified, I do believe that she comes off as inauthentic, and furthermore, she has too many scandals attached to her name to make me say “I’m with Her.”

      2. Bernie Sanders is also extremely qualified — although personally, I would like him to at least speak more about his views on foreign policy. Any President who solely focuses on either the domestic or foreign situation of the United States is doomed to fail. I love Bernie’s message, and I love most of his ideas. But I also acknowledge the fact that he is very idealistic. How we would pass anything in our obstructionist congress is the question of the day.

      3. Ted Cruz would be worse than George W. Bush. Our country would survive those 8 years but would come out of them more divided than we have seen in awhile.

      4. I think its fair to deduce what I think of Donald Trump 🙂

      5. If Paul Ryan somehow becomes the Republican Nominee, I would call that a miscarriage of Democracy. Time will tell if anything like that actually happens.

      At the end of the day, I’ll probably support the Democratic Nominee. I won’t vote for a Republican this election, and if something truly damning came out against Hillary, I wouldn’t vote for her either. It is truly saddening to see such a political chasm between the left and the right, and only a really strong leader will be able to bridge the gap between the two. Time will tell if one develops.

      I urge you to tell me what you think 🙂 I genuinely enjoyed your question, and would love to hear from you again! Thanks so much.

      Adrian J. Rivera

      • Hillary!? Qualified my ass. She should be in prison. Murdered Gaddafi. She was part of destabilizing the middle east. Arming al qaeda and other supposed enemies of ours. Husband an alleged rapist. Says the constitution is outdated. Shes all for taking our guns away. Shes a maaajor puppet. So many banks funding her campaign which she would have to repay in whatever way they want. Says iran and russia are responsible for russia. At first i didnt support anyone cause i know moreso how the system works and i was a bit ify for trump but reading what that juan guy put up there ^ is making convert to the “dark side” lol. Either way the peoples vote doesnt matter.

About the author

Adrian Rivera

Adrian Rivera

Adrian Rivera is a native of Mission, Texas. He is an incoming freshmen at Yale University where he will study History, Global Affairs, or Ethics, Politics, and Economics. Adrian was a Yale Young Global Scholar for 2014 and 2015 where he won the Director's Award in the International Affairs and Security Session. He enjoys reading, watching movies, and listening to music.

Library

Subscribe to the Newsletter