I’ve often heard older people say they were surprised they saw a black president in their lifetime. Now, I feel astonishment that I’ve seen a despotic demagogue in mine; I’d naively assumed that a man like Trump would never find himself in the Oval Office. I also didn’t think Trump would go through with his election promises, at least not so swiftly. He’s signed a storm of executive orders, including building the wall along the Mexican border, and proceeding with the easement of the Dakota Access Pipeline. It’s worth noting that signing executive orders is not the same as action. One of the first things Obama did as president was to sign an executive order to dismantle Guantanamo Bay, and yet the detention camp still stands.
Arguably, the most egregious of Trump’s actions is the immediate ‘Muslim Ban’, preventing citizens from Syria, Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Sudan and Somalia from entering the US for 120 days. Muslim majority countries where Trump has business interests, including Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Turkey, the UAE, Egypt and Indonesia have been left out of the order. The ban includes British citizens who are originally from the banned countries. The action is supposedly to protect America from terrorists, however, there have been no acts of terrorism on American soil by individuals from the banned countries. True to form, the Mango in Chief sacked Sally Yates, the Attorney General, when she dared point out the illegality of the action. The unconstitutional ban will not protect US citizens from terrorism, in fact, it will no doubt be a recruiting tool for ISIS. It’s worth noting at this point that the Trump administration did not consult Homeland security or appropriately interrogate the legal legitimacy of the order. Today it has emerged that Trump slammed the phone down on the Australian Prime Minister. President Tango has once again demonstrated his incompetence and unsuitability for the role of leader of the free world.
Theresa May’s grovelling visit to the White House last week was embarrassing. The precarious nature of our financial world-status post Brexit, explains some of her obsequious, simpering demeanour. Nonetheless, she should have been more forthright in her criticism of The Muslim Ban. Saying that she disagrees is inadequate and is not the same as condemnation. May has said President Trump has assured her of 100% commitment to Nato and a advantageous trade deal for the UK. However, I suspect his word is as fallacious as the arrangement of blonde fluff atop his head.
Barak Obama made the rare move of criticising the actions of the new president, saying he opposed ‘the notion of discriminating against individuals because of their faith or religion’. He added ‘citizens exercising their Constitutional rights to assemble, organise and have their voices heard by their elected officials is exactly what we expect to see when American values are at stake.’
I went to the Women’s March in London on January 21st, and it was interesting to see the cross section of society of present. It’s clear that Trump’s actions are so offensive that people across the financial and political spectrum have been galvanised into action. Even giant multi-national companies have contributed to the anti-Trump movement, with Starbucks promising to employ thousands of refugees over the next few years. We’re at a critical juncture in history where we need to make our voices heard. It is no longer enough just to shake our heads wearily at the headlines and assume there’s nothing to be done. Join a march, write to your MP, sign a petition. If you’re appalled by a man who is violating the human rights of citizens across the world, it’s time to speak up.
All images sourced from Twitter.