22 MAY 2017
On January 20 of this year, Donald John Trump became the 45th President of the United States. This is not news, I know, but the way some folks are behaving, you’d think it was.
President Trump may not have been your choice for president. He may not be in your political party. Heck, he wasn’t my choice either. As a Conservative, I was definitely voting for a Republican. But of the seventeen candidates who threw their hats in the ring to be the Republican nominee, Mr. Trump was number seventeen for me. As I felt then, and still feel now, he is brash, arrogant, unduly critical of those who do not side with him, and generally boorish in his behavior. And, yes, I voted for him.
But, an election was held last November and Donald J. Trump won. He is now my president. Period.
Listen, I remember only too well watching the returns on TV in the 1992 election. I was stationed in Rota, Spain at that time. On Election Night Isaura and I decided to call it a night since we were many hours ahead of the polls closing in the States. We were hopeful that George H. W. Bush might pull off a victory and serve a second term. We were sorely disappointed to find out the next morning that William Jefferson Clinton was our new Commander in Chief. Same thing occurred with the election of Barack Hussain Obama. Did I throw a hissy fit and publicly declare that the new president was not my president? No! Of course not. To be honest, that thought never crossed my mind. In fact, such a thought to me is absurd.
We are Americans. Which means we are a free people. We enjoy liberties others around the world can’t even fathom. So as imperfect as we are, I still trust the system of government we have. This means in an open and free election I willingly accept the will of the American people in their choice for president, and most importantly, even if I disagree with the outcome.
As I watched the President make an historic speech in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia over the weekend, I got to thinking: “How is it that this man is honored by a foreign government that has been openly opposed to the freedoms and liberties enjoyed by all Americans?” This is, after all, the home of Islam. Saudi Arabia was home to 15 of the 19 hijackers on 9/11. If you watched the news about this trip at all, you saw how the Saud royal family received the President and his entourage, including a ravishing, eye-popping First Lady, Melania Trump. The royal carpet was literally rolled out to the stairway of Air Force One. King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud personally greeted President Trump as he deplaned, something he never did for President Obama. Later that evening at a royal dinner, the king presented President Trump with the highest civilian award known as the Collar of Abdulaziz al Saud medal.
Later in the evening, President Trump was asked to address the heads of state from some fifty different Islamic countries. Our president was absolutely brilliant! In a gracious and humble manner, he made it clear that neither he nor the American people had any interest in changing the culture and beliefs of the Saudi people. This is one of his opening statements, “[America’s] vision is one of peace, security, and prosperity—in this region, and in the world. Our goal is a coalition of nations who share the aim of stamping out extremism and providing our children a hopeful future that does honour to God.” What he did say, and with a wonderful sense of historic and religious sensitivity, was that the Saudis, and all other Islamic nations, must drive out the terrorists in order for there to be peace.
I encourage every reader of my column to take the time to read the transcript of the President’s speech in Saudi Arabia. You can pull it up easily on the Internet. The speech was forceful, yet respectful. I will close with these remarks made by our President in his speech as he addressed the terrorist problem head-on.
“Every time a terrorist murders an innocent person, and falsely invokes the name of God, it should be an insult to every person of faith. Terrorists do not worship God, they worship death.
“If we do not act against this organised terror, then we know what will happen. Terrorism's devastation of life will continue to spread. Peaceful societies will become engulfed by violence. And the futures of many generations will be sadly squandered.
“If we do not stand in uniform condemnation of this killing – then not only will we be judged by our people, not only will we be judged by history, but we will be judged by God.
“This is not a battle between different faiths, different sects, or different civilisations. This is a battle between barbaric criminals who seek to obliterate human life, and decent people of all religions who seek to protect it. This is a battle between Good and Evil.”
Now THAT’S my President!