The more time passes, the more we get the impression that the United States is sinking into chaos. The nightmare continues and it is very difficult to envisage a peaceful end.
Speaking mainly via Twitter since the start of the crisis, the president spoke and made a symbolic exit after six days of crisis. If his fiercest supporters seem to be satisfied with his statements on law and order, a majority of observers deplore his lack of empathy and political recovery.
If you listen to his statement again, calculate the time spent in the shock of another controversial death and the time spent in the event of military intervention. Also look at the list of troublemakers or thugs. You will not find anything on the far right that has infiltrated certain protests even if local sheriffs have mentioned it.
Trump openly defies state governors and threatens to impose the US military on them. Rather than offering support if necessary, he calls them soft and weak. Again, no recognition of a complex situation.
- LISTEN to Luc Laliberté’s chronicle of American politics on QUB Radio:
As if his address was not enough, the President went out to have his picture taken in front of St. John’s Church. A bible in hand, he wanted to make sure he showed his respect for the venerable place of worship. So that he could get there, a peaceful demonstration was smashed and gas was used to dislodge the participants. Nothing less. He had just declared that he was the friend of the pacifist demonstrators …
Once again the supporters of the president who often appear at the bottom of my blog or on social networks could invoke a bias on my part in the analysis of the statements and behaviors of the American president, but the harshest condemnation is coming from the bishop responsible for the episcopal diocese of Washington.
Mariann Budde not only regrets that he was not informed of the president’s visit (not even a simple courtesy call), but she denounces the president’s recovery. On Twitter she severely condemned Donald Trump in very clear terms: “(…) used a Bible and a church of my diocese as a backdrop for a message antithetical to the teachings of Jesus and everything that our church stands for. ” The president used a bible and our church to go against the message of Jesus and his teachings.
Many other voices in different churches have been heard and they are unanimous in deploring the situation. It is noted that the president did not go to church to pray, or even acknowledge the suffering of George Floyd. Unanimously, he is criticized for recovering religious symbols for strictly political ends.
I wrote a few months ago that this president is dangerous for his country and, by extension, for us. I am more convinced than ever. Incompetent and belligerent, he never wanted to speak to all his fellow citizens. As a historian, I never refer to the past in a frivolous or rash way, but you have to go back and forth through the most dramatic episodes in American history to find a president who has divided so much without ever trying to unite.
I invite you to do the exercise with me and leave your comments here. Find another president who provoked so many different groups within a single term. Before and during the American Civil War (can we imagine a worse division than the Civil War?), Even Abraham Lincoln reached out and wanted to reinstate the secessionist states.
No, Donald Trump did not create the problems and the polarization, but he exploits them in a shameful manner regardless of the catastrophic fallout. COVID-19, economic crisis and racial question are all ingredients that should not be mixed and which make the situation unstable. Even if his means have limits, the president is a leader, the only one whose voice is heard throughout the country. If he must protect his fellow citizens as he claims, he must also call for calm and bring them together rather than adding fuel to the fire.