Don­ald Trump: Is he for real?

Jamaica Gleaner - - OPINION & COMMENTARY - Ron­ald Ma­son Ron­ald Ma­son is an im­mi­gra­tion at­tor­ney-at-law and Supreme Court me­di­a­tor. Email feed­back to col­umns@glean­erjm.com and na­tion­sagenda@gmail.com.

DON­ALD TRUMP was born 70 years ago into a New York City for­tune. His fa­ther was a real-es­tate de­vel­oper. As he grew up know­ing only the trap­pings of wealth and a restric­tive life, one would be per­mit­ted to won­der about the im­pact this had on his per­son­al­ity.

He is brash, self-as­sured and has never had to com­pro­mise. His life re­flects, as he has put it, “the art of the deal”. Racist. Ex­ploita­tive to con­trac­tors. Re­act­ing in the mo­ment. This and more is trade­mark Trump.

The cor­po­rate in­ter­ests he de­vel­oped were in tan­dem with be­ing a celebrity. The tele­vi­sion per­sona co­ex­isted with the ex­tro­verted dab­bler – in pol­i­tics and power. Why not be pres­i­dent of the USA? Fi­nally, Barack Obama made him the butt of his com­edy rou­tine at a White House Cor­re­spon­dents’ Din­ner. This was in di­rect re­sponse to Trump’s al­le­ga­tions of Obama not be­ing born in Amer­ica. He sat and lis­tened and seethed, but could not re­spond. He then joined up with the Repub­li­can Party and en­tered the pri­mary process, seek­ing the pres­i­den­tial nom­i­na­tion.

TAP­PING INTO DIS­CON­TENT

The pri­maries were a reval­u­a­tion. He was self-funded; brag­gado­cious enough to be­lit­tle the more than 18 other con­tes­tants, and bright enough to tap into the dis­con­tent of a seg­ment of the pop­u­la­tion. The white, non­col­lege-ed­u­cated male – the de­plorables.

It was a win­ning for­mula. Four­teen mil­lion votes from the de­plorables landed him the nom­i­na­tion as the Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nee. He would make Amer­ica great again; make white males rule; and end trade deals. Glob­al­i­sa­tion and cli­mate change be damned! Pun­ish the com­pa­nies that move man­u­fac­tur­ing jobs over­seas. De­port un­doc­u­mented im­mi­grants. Se­cure the south­ern bor­der. Not the north­ern one with white Canada. Amer­ica for the good old boys, not even for the white women.

Trump did well for a pe­riod as al­ways from times past. The coun­try did not per­ceive that he could ac­tu­ally win the pres­i­dency. Then the gods con­spired to pro­vide op­po­si­tion by the Democrats in the form of Hil­lary Rod­ham Clin­ton – a gift from heaven. Hil­lary was a flawed, dis­liked po­lit­i­cal gad­fly who is ob­sessed with be­com­ing pres­i­dent. The first woman ever to win the Demo­cratic nom­i­na­tion.

The de­plorables have risen up in anger and re­fused to even act in a ra­tio­nal man­ner. They threaten the very fab­ric of the coun­try. Loose talk of revo­lu­tion, the elec­tion be­ing rigged if they do not win, and the as­ser­tion that Obama was not even born in the USA. Trump is the fuel to their fire.

Obama states that the Repub­li­cans have been “rid­ing this tiger for years”. The de­plorables are un­likely to threaten the strength and en­durance of the Amer­i­can democ­racy, but they can give it a black eye. They will fuel the dis­con­tent where it spills into the streets. The dan­ger is, one is un­sure what the method of re­tal­i­a­tion will be if they lose the elec­tion by large mar­gins.

The me­dia are di­vided. Fox News ver­sus ev­ery­body else. Ul­tra con­ser­va­tive Rush Lim­baugh and oth­ers of his ilk ver­sus the lib­eral talk shows. Law-en­force­ment agency mem­bers wear the Trump cam­paign cap – ‘Make Amer­ica Great Again’.

The black com­mu­nity only pro­vides four per cent sup­port for Trump. Stark ra­cial di­vide. Im­mi­gra­tion and Cus­toms En­force­ment per­son­nel en­dorse Trump. These are fed­eral em­ploy­ees.

The di­vi­sions are many. The Repub­li­can speaker of the House is in open hos­til­ity with Trump. The GOP and Congress are at war. The Repub­li­can Na­tional Com­mit­tee is not sup­port­ing Trump with tele­vi­sion ad­ver­tise­ments, yet The Don­ald could re­ally win.

PRES­I­DENT TRUMP A CON­CERN

The prospect of a Pres­i­dent Trump is of ma­jor con­cern the world over. The Es­tab­lish­ment Repub­li­cans will be at war with the de­plorables, also known as the Free­dom Cau­cus of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives. Paul Ryan may lose his post as speaker. The Demo­cratic leg­is­la­tion would block ap­provals ev­ery step of the way and it cer­tainly would be grid­lock.

The qual­ity of life would de­te­ri­o­rate con­sid­er­ably and we would have a more em­bold­ened police force, which would foster re­tal­i­a­tion from the black com­mu­nity. NATO is be­gin­ning to show signs of stress and un­ease with its main bene­fac­tor, the USA, be­cause Trump has ac­cused them of not be­ing cur­rent with their pay­ments. The prospect of four years of Trump cre­ates un­told night­mares. The world watches and waits.

It is dif­fi­cult to de­ter­mine what the im­pact would be on a coun­try like Ja­maica. He has said very lit­tle about for­eign af­fairs; how­ever, we need to be alert on many fronts. First, should Trump be elected pres­i­dent, im­mi­gra­tion, as we know it, will change. USAID may be re­stricted to fund the de­plorables in the USA, and a siege men­tal­ity will likely grip the na­tion.

Novem­ber 8 is only 23 days away. Let us watch as it all un­folds.

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