On Sept. 25, President Trump addressed the United Nations General Assembly. During this speech, he affirmed that the United States will be independent and other nations will not be able to impose regulations on trade/immigration that the United States does not want. However, the more noteworthy event from this address was the fact that after Trump boasted about how his administration has accomplished more in two years than any other president before him, he elicited laughs from his audience of world leaders. It is obvious that Trump was taken aback by this reaction, as he took the time to say that he “was not expecting that reaction” in order to resolve the awkwardness. This moment marks a tipping point in the history of Trump’s administration; it marks the first time that a President has been openly laughed at by the world. The reputation of the United States has been brought so low, damaged so much, that it has become impossible to take seriously. This is unacceptable, and demands outrage. Not manufactured media outrage that disappears in a week, or carefully crafted tweets designed to rally people up for likes and attention; real, bonafide outrage that seeks real change.
It is a common occurrence for people to treat Trump and his antics as a meme. I know that my friends and I have laughed at a Trump tweet many times, never once really dwelling on what his ramblings have done to the credibility of the Oval Office. It is tempting to simply laugh at Trump and treat his actions as a joke, but the time has come where the joke simply isn’t funny anymore. This administration is doing real damage both to the outside reputation and the inner harmony of the United States. As the rest of the world increasingly finds it hard to take the President seriously, the country becomes more and more divided and polarized because of Trump’s divisive rhetoric. Just this week, Trump tweeted how “THE ONLY REASON TO VOTE FOR A DEMOCRAT IS IF YOU’RE TIRED OF WINNING!”This kind of statement is extremely harmful to our country’s unity; Trump is effectively dismissing half of the country’s voters as losers. This even runs contrary to his victory speech on the night of the election, in which he called for America to “bind the wounds of division.”It is so easy to reduce this kind of statement to a joke, something to laugh at as the ramblings of an insane man before getting on with your day and forgetting all about it. However, we cannot keep reducing Trump to a recurring gag that provides material for the next Late Show with Stephen Colbert; people have to take real action to demonstrate that this is not the new normal. This action does not have to be anything drastic; the best way to act against this current administration would be to vote. Vote for the candidates that will challenge the insanity and the casual cruelty that this administration has been demonstrating. It may seem like a single vote will be like yelling into the wind, but when people mobilize, magical things can happen. Don’t reduce Trump to a meme any longer; rise above the cynicism and be brave enough to actually care. It is too easy to be apathetic about the sad state of our country’s leadership, but apathy is what leads to bombastic figures like Trump. The insanity is not normal. Dare to want something different, a government that cares less about partisan politics and more about the welfare of its citizens. Want this not because the news tells you to, or because late night comedians joke about Trump’s incompetence; want change for yourself, and the good of your fellow Americans.
Ben Crnic is a contributor for the The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.