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Trump: A Dangerous Radical
Victor Tanis-Stoll

Donald Trump promises to “make America great again” if he is elected president. He says he’ll do this, in part, by excluding all Muslims. But Islam isn’t the problem. Of the 1.6 billion Muslims worldwide, a relatively small group of violent radicals mar the name of a respected religion with their senseless cruelty.

Merriam-Webster defines “radical” as “favoring extreme changes in existing views, habits, conditions, or institutions.” This accurately describes terrorist groups like ISIS and Al Qaeda, but fits the real estate developer as well. Though he doesn’t kill people in the name of his Republican candidacy, his political stance and his words call for and inspire violence.

During a rally in Birmingham, Alabama in November, protester Mercutio Southall Jr. shouted “Black lives matter,” and Trump supporters knocked him to the ground, punching and kicking him. Trump’s response to the attack was, “Roughed up? Maybe he should have been roughed up because it was absolutely disgusting what he was doing.”

In Burlington, Vermont, during a campaign rally, the businessman who declared bankruptcy four times, instructed his security team to confiscate a protester’s coat. “You know it’s about 10 degrees below zero outside.”

Waterboarding, a form of torture in which water is poured onto the face and head of an immobilized captive so that they feel they are drowning, is a “minor form” of interrogation according to Trump. He says, “We should go much stronger than waterboarding.”

Tell me, Trump: What was so disgusting about a man exercising his First Amendment rights? And have you ever been outside without a coat in below-zero weather, or been waterboarded? Try it. Then tell the world how you feel about it.

We’re a Nation of Immigrants

image by YC-Art Dept

He says he’ll build a wall (figuratively and, in the case of our southern border, literally) around a nation whose greatness derives from immigrants and their descendants. It’s part of our society’s DNA to offer safe haven to people who are persecuted elsewhere. Everyone in the U.S. who’s not a Native American is an immigrant or descended from one. Barring access to different ethnic groups goes against what this country stands for, and would ultimately hurt us in the long run. Some of America’s greatest cultural and technological advancements are owed to immigrants.

For example, Albert Einstein revolutionized physics, and he immigrated here from Germany, fleeing Hitler’s laws that took university positions away from Jews—something like the law Trump proposes to “ban Muslims.” Canadian-born pathologist Elizabeth Stern studied the different stages in which cervical cells turned cancerous. Because of her, this form of cancer is easier to diagnose and treat. And the Bangladeshi structural engineer and architect, Fazlur Rahman Khan designed the Sears Tower and the John Hancock Center, moving forward the design and engineering of skyscrapers. America should never stop welcoming immigrants from all over the world.

Women Would Suffer

We need a leader who’s informed, yet level-headed and considerate enough to assess both sides of a situation. President Obama has publicly acknowledged that most Muslims, both in the United States and abroad, intend to live normal lives and should not be blamed for the few who are actually dangerous. Trump’s inability to see both sides should disqualify him from the presidency. How can a leader unable to see the full picture make an informed decision?

Women would not fare well if Trump occupied the Oval Office. How can a man who insults and stereotypes women advance women’s rights? During an interview, he once told a female journalist “you wouldn’t have your job if you weren’t beautiful.” He’s also denigrated women he doesn’t like as “fat pigs” and “disgusting animals.” Feminists have had a lot of success moving society past this notion of women’s worth depending only on their looks, but Trump still treats them like objects.

Time and time again, he has proven himself a villain who shows no signs of changing. Still, after all of his public bigotry and mudslinging, many in the Republican Party assert they will support him if he gets the nomination. I believe this act of cowardice is to save face and to deny the fact that this Trumpenstein monster rose from the GOP operating table.

No matter how crude and embarrassing he appears, the fact is he represents many of the Republican Party’s ideas with his capitalist dominance and brazen ignorance of the truth. And it’s no surprise this monster came to life in the conservatives’ laboratory, considering their drive to support the wealth of the wealthy and reduce taxes along with the government’s power. It was fate.

Ohio Governor John Kasich has advocated for the wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, and he wants to defund Planned Parenthood and drastically limit a woman’s right to an abortion. Cruz calls Planned Parenthood “a criminal enterprise … buying and selling the body parts of unborn children.” He also wants everyone to pay a 10% tax rate. They may not say things as offensive as “Mexicans are rapists” or “[John McCain] is not a war hero…he was captured” or “in the old days [a protester] would be carried out on a stretcher.” But they, too, are dangerous radicals.

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