Sunday, September 24, 2017

Divider in Chief?

In every administration, there is talk about the need for the President to be the Uniter-in-Chief, to try to rise above the country's divisions and lead as if E Pluribus Unum were really true. Almost every President tries to fulfill this role, though none ever succeeds completely. The power of the Presidency comes tied to this tremendous responsibility. It is a simultaneously necessary and impossible task.

I say "almost every President", because the current occupant appears to have abandoned this role altogether. However one goes about uniting a divided and fractious country, nobody thinks that the best way to do it is for the President to pick a hot-button issue and then forcefully take one side, hurling vulgar insults at the other.

Apparently, the President thinks there are "good people" on both sides of the Charlottesville rallies, but not around the issue of the national anthem at football games?

If the Trump Administration has any beneficial impact on the United States, it will be to teach us - by force of necessity - how to rise to be our better selves despite what the President says or does. If this lasts a full four years, we may discover by 2020 that we don't really need the President anymore. We're on our own.

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