Updated: Aug 21, 2018
The American Presidency is an institution. It is not about a person, but it is reflective of the power of the institution that fuels the tenets of the office. Subsequently, you can have different persons occupying the office of the President, who share the same level of influence and power, because the presidency is not about a person but it is about the institution itself. Unfortunately, if you have someone occupying the office, but doesn't understand its tenets or complexities, you will constantly face internal and external conflicts that reflect this lack of understanding. Consequently, as the leader goes so goes the people, which explains why this country is at times as confusing and frustrating and; dare I say as chaotic as its leader.
Probably one of the more basic and simplest components to understand about the American Presidency is that your words carry an extremely high level of power and influence. This would seem like a pretty obvious function of the office, but it seems to be one that has been thrown around fairly loosely particularly by the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Donald Trump is probably the worst and the most frequent abuser of the power of the voice of the presidency, primarily because he doesn't understand what it means to really and truly be president. There is nothing about his character that says "presidential" and it is most illustrated in his constant use of the office as his personal bully-pulpit to insult, to embarrass, to manipulate and to distract the American people from his obvious ineptitude and shortcomings at handling the rigors of maintaining this office. Trump's use of derogatory language whether it be on Twitter or from the Presidential Lectern it is unacceptable and absolute disgrace to the office and ultimately to our country, to have our highest representative conduct themselves in that manner. Calling private citizens, "dumb" and "dog" or using phrases like "fake news" or calling the press the "enemy of the people" is extremely "un-presidential," and has largely gone unchecked by the members of the ruling political party he-himself represents.
What are Republicans thinking? What is their strategy on dealing with this person who obviously does not know what it means to be president.This became quite clear during Trump's campaign back in 2016.. Saying things like, "if I shot someone in Times Square in broad daylight you would still vote for me" Or, making fun a handicap person, or stereotyping an entire ethnicity by basically calling all Mexicans drug dealers, thugs, and the scourge of society that we need to build a wall to keep them out. This is not presidential. This is highly problematic language and behavior, but what is worst is that this language was transferred from candidate Trump to President Trump. One could probably understand and maybe even accept that the presidential elections can get pretty ugly at times. Because of the vetting that is involved there are some secrets that come out about candidates that were never suppose to see the light of day, but because of the power of the office, there is a competitive nature that ensues that drives candidates to sling mud and find dirt on one another in order to get closer to their goal of becoming President of the United States or POTUS. It still remains to be seen whether Trump did collude or conspire with Russia to become POTUS, the country is waiting with bated breath to see the results of the Mueller Russia Investigation that contains evidence as to whether Trump did collude with the Russian Gov't to influence the results of an American Democratic Elections, which ultimately de-legitimize his presidency. Although, we are starting to see some clues that he may have colluded with Russia, and the closer we get to those results being revealed, Trump is quickly becoming more and more; in the words of Omarosa "unhinged," belligerent and inflammatory, which is ultimately at the detriment of the country of which he serves as the Commander in Chief.
What does it mean to be president? That's a great question, and i'm glad you asked. The president as the leader of the "Free World" bears some responsibility for being the best example of morality and decorum. He is our nation's top problem solver; citizen's should be able to look to him for answers to piercing questions about the economy, immigration, innovation, industry, security along with a whole host of other hotbed issues. The president should understand that he is the nation's highest role model to our youth as well as those who aspire to occupy this office one day. He should also understand the nature of this country and how we empathize with immigrants and refugees that are coming to this country to escape conflict and endangerment. The president should understand that this country has historically been a safe haven for millions of immigrant people, and will continue to be so, long after their presidency has concluded. This nation has always considered to be a "melting pot" of many diverse nationalities and ethnicities, that come here with the hopes of seizing opportunities and becoming apart of this nation's growing economy of talent and resources that helps to make this the greatest country in the world. The President of the United State is also a world leader, which means he is called upon to represent this country with other world leaders and to communicate and to work together as much as possible to tackle the world's problem on a global stage. So, the president' must have a clear view of the world surrounding the United States and what problems and challenges they face as well. Our friends is his friends, and likewise our enemies our his enemies. And, there should be a very good distinction between the two. The president should understand protocol and how to conduct himself in public settings, realizing that he no longer just represents himself, but an entire country of free men and women that are worthy The president is not a "divider in chief," but he must be able to find ways to bring the country together. He is not the president of one particular group or ethnicity, but he is the President of the entire United States. And, the needs of this country becomes his needs, the problems of this country becomes his problems, the police brutality that black & brown people experience is his problem, the challenges surrounding immigration is his problem, the racial divide in this country is his problem, the growing number of families living below the poverty line is his problem, the pipeline to prison is his problem, gun violence is his problem. All these issues and problems are in his hands to help our nation solve. And, we as citizens of this country have the right to expect a certain temperament and demeanor from our nation's leader. This is in my view a very reasonable expectation for what it means to be president.
Trump not only doesn't understand the impact of his words as President, he doesn't understand the merits of what it means to be President. And, this is the most problematic, because what American's essentially did; in saying they wanted someone different in office, was to put someone in the office of the presidency that not only does know how to communicate as a president, but doesn't even know what it means really means to be president. The hands of every American that voted for Trump are dirty with the ineptitude and insolence with which Trump has literally run this office into the proverbial ground. The U.S. is literally a laughing stock around the world. Leaders of the world no longer take this country seriously, primarily because of who we have sitting in the Oval Office at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. He tries to run this country as a dictator of a totalitarian government, constantly berating the American Press, promulgating censorship of those who disagree with his policies, scandal and controversy at every turn. The Trump White House will go down in history as easily THEE most scandalous presidency in modern American History.
What are we saying, Trump clearly not only does not understands what his words means as President, he clearly doesn't understand what it means to be President of the United States. And, you would think that this office would only be reserved for those who truly understand the merits of being the President of the United States and what it means to be presidential. But, clearly it is not. Not only does Trump not know what this office means, or the language keenly associated with it, but he is unwittingly diminishing the power of this office with each knee jerk reaction to criticism from his opponents, or the media, or the endless number of scandalous and salacious news stories that are coming out on just about a daily basis about him or the people in his inner circle. There is higher level of decorum and discretion that is required from the leader of the Free World. And, the fact that none of his colleagues or peers are reminding him of this makes them accessories to the demise of our country's highest institution; the American Presidency. It is my hope that these spineless Republicans will pay a huge price this coming November for their silence. This year's Mid-Term Elections will not just be a referendum on Donald Trump, but it will also be a referendum on the entire Republican Party who essentially remains radio silent while this man reeks havoc on one of our nation's storied institutions. Somebody should have to answer for this 20 month debacle with Trump at the helm, and hopefully his day of reckoning will be coming sooner rather than later.