When Donald Trump entered the race to become the Republican Presidential nominee last June, I was about ready to break out in laughter. How could somebody who for the last forty years has funded and supported liberal Democrats possibly expect to win over the Republican Party and become a front-runner in the race for the nomination? More importantly, how can someone with about as much political experience as Tom Brady be expected to comprehend how to effectively carry out the responsibilities of being President? But lo and behold, he has defied all odds and is now leading the pack of Republican candidates by a substantial margin.
To be fair, there're some very valid reasons as to why so many Americans have chosen to board the Trump train. Donald is blunt, aggressive, and aside from the lobbyists who control his super PAC, doesn't have any loyalties to special interest groups. His supporters feel like the Republican establishment has deserted them and doesn't care about their interests. They feel betrayed by the very party they've been faithful supporters of for years. Trump supporters believe that America is being governed by stupid people, something which even I won't entirely disagree with. Donald Trump couldn't care less about the opinions of others and, with every word that passes through his mouth, consistently defies the political correctness nonsense which is strangling our right to freedom of speech.
Last week, I had the opportunity to hear Donald Trump speak in person at AIPAC's Policy Conference. I went into Monday night not really knowing what to expect from him. For the first time in his political campaign, Trump was expected to be speaking from a prepared speech rather than the plethora of glittering generalities and cheap slogans which were so effective at drawing his ignoramus support base behind him. As much as I hate to admit it, he had me cheering for a good portion of his speech. Between his vows to veto anti-Israel UN resolutions and his promise to stand behind Israel in anyway necessary, Trump almost had the chance to grab my support.
However as time passed and his tone didn't change, I was left exceptionally disappointed by him. Trump had a golden opportunity to appear informed, presidential, and serious about carrying out the duties of the Presidency. Unfortunately, however, he chose to use his AIPAC invitation to spew the same shiny one-liners that we've grown accustomed to hearing from him.
I believe a well-written political speech must consist of three things: What you believe in, what you want to do, and how you're going to achieve it. Donald Trump has without a doubt perfected the first and arguably the second part. But the third part? No.
Donald Trump is as fit to be president as Saudi Arabia is to be a member of the United Nations Human Rights Council. The argument that him being a successful businessman (which in itself is somewhat debatable) somehow makes him qualified to be president is akin to saying somebody with experience in using needles to inject heroin into their veins is qualified to be a nurse. Governing a country is very different from managing a casino in Atlantic City or luxury high-rise in Manhattan. For starters, America can't exactly declare bankruptcy like Trump is most certainly no stranger to doing with his business failures. To put it lightly, Donald Trump has absolutely zero experience in virtually every political field. Sure he can surround himself with the best advisors a president could ask for. So far, however, he hasn't done a good job of picking those out either.
As legitimate as these points might seem, lack of political experience and lackluster debate and speech performance are the very least of Donald Trump's bad qualities. He is the embodiment of the racism and bigotry that Democrats so often try to label the entire Republican Party with. Not even physically disabled reporters are immune to mockery from Donald Trump. Trump makes no attempt to hide his disdain towards Muslims and it was his suggestion for a total ban on Muslims from traveling to the United States that really raised a red flag in my mind. Being a Jew, I don't make analogies to Nazi Germany lightly, but his proposal to establish a national database on American Muslims sounds a lot like what the Nazis did to the Jews in the 1930s. I could write an entire book about all the things Donald Trump has said about women, but for the sake of retaining my sanity, I'll hold off on that.
Donald Trump doesn't represent what I stand for as a proud Republican. His ineptitude in politics, prejudice towards multiple minority groups, and outright incitement of violence towards anybody that dares to challenge him are but a few red flags that cannot be overlooked. Sure, I'm just as sick and tired of the incompetence of our leaders as many of Trump's supporters are. I really do understand it: They're angry! They feel disenfranchised and left in the dark by the current political leadership. But is Donald Trump really the answer to our prayers? We should put some very serious thought into whether this is the man we trust running our nation before we make a mistake that can never be undone.
My name is Benjamin Jaffe. I was born and raised in South Florida and plan on majoring in political science at Hebrew University in Israel.