“Opinion separates, but the Word unites.” Paul Wilbur
Although I totally agree with this statement, I’m launching into a commentary about President Trump. Here goes…
President Trump is unpopular
And yet he is the president of the United States.
He’s like Marmite: If you are British you’ll understand the comparison. If you’re not, I’ll just say, regarding most people it seems, re Donald Trump: you either love him or you hate him!
Donald Trump’s unpopularity began when he announced his running for president in 2016. Before that, he was quite a celebrity figure. Some liked him, others didn’t. When he said he’d run for president, some celebrities said they’d move to Canada if he won. Well, he won, but those people did not migrate over the Canadian border. They did complain.
His unpopularity got much worse when he won the election. Some young people shouted, “Not my president” and refused to recognise his authority or role as head of the United States. Their behaviour was encouraged. The majority of the media took the side of the protestors.
It got worse and worse as the media revelled in his unpopularity, mocking him, initially calling him Trump rather than the President. The mass media did not recognise his authority with respect, and so it fed those who vehemently disapproved of him. Matters only worsened.
And all of this was within weeks of the election result. He’d not yet even been sworn in.
As his unpopularity escalated, he got louder.
He is a loud, direct person. In fact, isn’t this personality quite like the concept — rightly or wrongly — that some non-Americans describe as quintessential American?
Now I’m approaching my point.
Some Americans are coming to realise that internationally, Americans have not been particularly well-liked. On the whole, Europeans have disliked Americans since WWII. Americans only began to recognise their international unpopularity during President George W Bush’s presidency — with 9.11 and the (Second) Iraq War. It isn’t fair to paint all in a nation with one brush, but stereotyping has happened over decades to the American people.
As a Canadian tourist, I was told by family and friends to “be sure to wear your Canadian maple leaf pin so people won’t mistake you for an American”.
Trump: the Reflection
Americans who don’t like President Trump seem to find him irksome, like squeaky chalk on a blackboard. My theory is that they are ashamed of him because seeing and hearing him is like looking into a mirror and being horrified by what is reflected back.
He is bombastic, obnoxious, imposing. Is that how much of the world has perceived Americans for decades? Of course that isn’t fair AND I’m generalising AND I don’t agree with that assessment anyway… I have American relatives and have lived in New York City. I love America and I love the quirky American positive, can-do attitude. I like Americans. People are people all over the world, and need to be valued and appreciated and respected.
But, I can’t help suspecting that some Americans who don’t like President Trump’s manner dislike him because he is a reflection of Americans and they are ashamed.
Is that why those same people hate the “Make America Great Again” slogan? Are they ashamed of America and dislike taking pride in their own country?
Now here’s the thing: GOD has put President Trump into the White House, just as He has put every nation’s leader into power, throughout history, one way or another.
Romans 13 begins, “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from GOD. Therefore whoever resists authority, resists the ordinance of GOD, and those who resist will bring judgement upon themselves.”
Those who have resisted President Trump’s presidency will experience judgement upon themselves.
A new election
Of course as in any democracy, people have a right to choose their president. They don’t, however, have the right to try to oust who wins just because they don’t like him, which is fundamentally what has happened in the United States since November 2016.
And yet plenty voted for President Trump the first time round and will do so again. Some others have withdrawn their support.
Elections are vital and the option for change is imperative; I do regret that the Trump administration was not given the opportunity to work free from constant assault.
Why are some not planning to vote for him the second time around?
Is it because his policies have changed? But they haven’t really, have they? He raised employment hugely, including that of the minority groups. He’s rebuilt manufacturing in America’s heartland. He tried to revise health care (though was blocked by the House of Representatives). He tried to complete the wall (though much of the funding was blocked by the House of Representatives). He’s combated illegal immigration (the cages photographed were actually from the Obama administration, although they have also been used since 2016). In foreign policy, he has supported Israel and endorsed Jerusalem as its capital. He’s moved Arab nations to work with Israel, aiding stability in the region. He’s got allied nations to pay their fair share in defence.
Is it because of his response to Covid-19? But who has got it right in the Western Hemisphere?
Is it because he’s annoying? Sure he is, but do we vote for a personality or for policy?
Here’s the nub: Has media pressure and individual pride infected many to reject Donald J Trump as a person and as the American President? Has the wave of objection and unpopularity become an infection as pervasive as Coronavirus?
To the Americans who follow Jesus
What is it about Jesus that made you follow him? What made the people follow him when he walked the earth? He wasn’t good looking. He didn’t say nice things to everybody (which is why the Pharisees wanted him dead). The people followed Jesus because of the miracles, his wisdom and his anointing.
Donald Trump in no way can nor should be compared to Jesus. But who is he and how did he get elected? What has he done to honour being kept in office? Does anything of what he does echo Jesus’ teaching?
Who has GOD anointed as American President for this time?
Four years ago people voted for Mr Trump because of his policies. Those haven’t changed, so why are some turning from him now?
I think GOD has allowed this president free rein. This man’s tongue is often hard to bear. Should that matter to the voter?
I think the LORD is exposing the heart of American Believers. If His Word matters, if His principles matter, then how should those who follow Him respond vis a vis this upcoming election?
Who is the candidate who best supports GOD’s Word and His principles?
Consider fact not media gossip
What does each candidate say about the Bible? About the Unborn? About Israel (which is still the apple of GOD’s eye)? Whom do you believe?
Who has best served the minority groups: blacks and hispanics in particular (by economic progress rather than a quote taken out of context)?
Who has best demonstrated, when in office, integrity and the outworking of the word he has spoken?
Each voter must investigate and answer that for him/herself before voting. It takes quite a lot of effort to follow the person rather than the media. It takes discernment too, to untangle the motive behind any message. Each must work out his own choice. My prayer is that folks will work out their own and not follow what someone else suggests.
How will you vote?
In these turbulent times, I don’t think an election is about personality but about encouraging the Kingdom of Heaven coming to Earth.
I pray all voters will pray, “Not my will but Your will, Father” and then vote accordingly. Then the election result will be in line with GOD’s perfect will.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.