So I have not made a secret that as a Republican who believes in traditional conservative values, there are a plethora of things about Donald Trump that I find repulsive, to put it lightly. However, I was always taught that it is best to give people the benefit of the doubt, so after his January 20th inauguration, I decided to shelve my concerns and give him a chance. Who knows, maybe the oversized talking Cheeto will not be so bad.
Being a Jew, I understand what it means to be at the receiving end of discrimination. The history of my people is chock-full of examples of suffering from persecution and discrimination. So predictably, one of the main issues I was hoping this new President would address is the worrying rise of anti-Semitism in America. I was optimistic. After all, how could he not feel a personal obligation to fight such a thing with all his heart and soul when his own daughter is an observant Jew.
Unfortunately, it seems like my optimism has not paid off. Trump has done little more than issue a quick condemnation of anti-Semitism here and there. He has not allocated any White House resources whatsoever to fight it. As a Jew, this leaves me wondering what will have to happen for him to get up and take concrete action.
I watched him verbally attack a Jewish reporter for daring to question his commitment to fighting anti-Semitism at a joint press conference with the Israeli prime minister. It is quite astounding that Netanyahu was able to keep a straight face during it, and had he chosen to walk off the stage out of shock and disgust for Trump, I would have applauded him for doing so.
At other press conferences, reporters have raised the issue of increasing anti-Semitism over the course of the election and beyond in their questions. Each question was a golden opportunity for Trump to announce a concrete plan to combat anti-Semitism. However, just as he did with questions regarding his administration’s alleged Russian ties, he chose to deflect them and reroute each one into another opportunity for him to talk about himself. As if we have not already heard him talk enough about himself over the past two years! Hell, at this point I probably know more about him than I do about myself!
I cannot help but notice that all these diehard Trumpists that wore “Make America Great Again” hats and incessantly lambasted Barack Obama for being “all talk, no action,” have been silent and at times even defensive of Trump for taking the same approach to anti-Semitism in America. Where I am from, that is called a double standard.
As a citizen of a country where I should expect to be protected from discrimination regardless of my beliefs, I can no longer say that I feel comfortable living in a country with a president who up until now at least, has demonstrated zero interest in protecting me because of my beliefs. Never have I been happier to be currently studying in Israel, and I am becoming more and more convinced that for my own safety, my temporary stay in Israel should become permanent. If Donald Trump has done anything for me, he has done a damn good job of convincing me that the America which I have called home for the past nineteen years of my life should no longer be my country of residence.
If his previous controversies were not enough, Today, Trump’s reluctance to take any concrete action combating discrimination in many forms highlights how much of a disgusting excuse he is for a President! With each passing day, I become more proud of myself for not voting for him. I am sick and tired of the shiny one-liners that seem to cause every single Trump supporter to have a massive erection. These one-liners will not protect a cemetery from vandalism, a Jewish center from bomb threats, or who knows what will come next. I want to see actions, not empty words.