It seems like a lifetime ago that President Obama was setting records in regard to deportation of Latino immigrants coming through our southern border. I remember several conversations at meetings of the National Council of La Raza (now UnidosUS) conferences related to this.
I also remember a night before an advocacy meeting of the organization that Janet Munguia, the President of NCLR, took to the stage to chastise President Obama and called him the “Deporter in Chief.” I thought at the time that what President Obama was doing was extreme and uncalled for.
I did not anticipate that the presidency of Donald Trump and his record of various kinds of bombastic rhetoric and acts would put our country in so much danger. Up until this year, the highlights of his presidency included name-calling, conspiracies and a running count of the number of lies he was spreading that tended to create an alternate self-serving reality.
It is those acts and the lying that went along with them that cause the alienation of our allies abroad, see his admiration and association with dictators in countries like Russia, Brazil, Turkey and North Korea, hollow out important institutions and create such a great political divide in America that he has effectively become the president of only a base that agrees with him. Trump has also been the subject of at least two major investigations and was impeached after the last one.
2020 has revealed an even starker side to Trump as the typical attack mode that he has used against people, governments and institutions is missing or is weak when it comes to COVID-19, our #1 enemy this year. His comparatively passive approach that refuses to recognize the danger of the virus has resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths in the United States and hundreds of thousands more projected in the near future.
Ironically, President Trump and the first lady are now part of the COVID-19 statistics as they contracted the virus in one of the spreader events they are fond of organizing and holding. Not only that, Trump became a spreader of the virus himself as he continued to hold large events even though he was contagious.
The President has also become the instigator of terrorist violence that has spread among the ranks of his supporters. His implied orders to White militia and supremacist groups is resulting in an increasingly dangerous state of affairs in the country.
The FBI among other institutions has recently identified these groups as armed, dangerous and violent. It is one of these groups located in Michigan that was caught plotting to kidnap the governor of that state and in the process kill members of the law enforcement community.
COVID-19 however, continues to be at the forefront of his spreading activities. Because the White House has been secretive about his health, it is not all-together possible to gauge the damage he has personally done to others with whom he has come in contact.
The more important big picture features his insistence that everything is normal and that we are turning the corner on the virus. At the same time, the country appears to be in the beginning of a second wave of 50 thousand or more infections and a thousand deaths a day.
President Donald Trump latest ploy is to question the November vote in a time when he needs to bring people together to support his reelection. Questioning our vote and voting methods is not a prescription for success.