In My Lifetime - 27 East

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Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1710702

In My Lifetime

Happily, I celebrated my 73rd birthday on July 3. So, by some standards, I am long in the tooth — and some say I am just a kid!

In my lifetime, I have never seen any president like Trump. We had Truman (“The Buck Stops Here”), Ike (a general and World War II hero), JFK (assassinated icon), Johnson (The Great Society), Nixon (resigned in disgrace), Ford (pardoned Nixon), Carter (most successful post-presidency), Reagan (former Hollywood actor), G.H.W. Bush (throwback patrician), Bill Clinton (great talent, tarnished reputation), G.W. Bush (WMD/Iraq War), Barack Obama (first African American POTUS), and now Trump (“I take no responsibly at all”). Quite a cast of characters … all human beings, none “perfect.”

Before Trump, Nixon was the most despised and vilified U.S. president in my era, for his “Dirty Tricks,” his criminal behavior, and he resigned in disgrace. Interestingly, Nixon thought that Trump had great promise as a politician … birds of a feather.

Over the course of less than four years, Trump has far exceeded Nixon’s disgraceful legacy by a wide margin.

Trump has used the presidency to enrich himself personally in plain daylight. Given the complicity of his elected Republican colleagues, these monetary transgressions go unchecked, and they are secondary to his many other abominable actions: Trump has failed to handle the coronavirus pandemic, leading to over 130,000 American deaths as of July 4; Trump separated mothers from their children at the border; alienated our European allies; looked past Russia’s placing bounties on U.S. Armed Forces; fomented violence and hatred; rolled back environmental protections; denigrated women in the most crude ways; disrespected the men and women who have bravely served our country in the military; and he is once again seeking foreign interference in our elections to enhance his chances in November.

Amazingly, I have cited only a small number of the destructive things Trump has done, with the full support of his Republican enablers.

In many ways, I really don’t recognize my country anymore. Trump has given license to the racists to openly express themselves … never has any U.S. president in my lifetime behaved in this fashion. Rather than trying to bring our country together, Trump thrives on dividing us.

Joe Biden is not “perfect” … but he is a decent man and will work hard to heal our wounds of division and bring us back together as the United States of America.

I urge you to reject Trump’s divisiveness and to embrace a hopeful future that is based on love and inclusiveness rather than hate and division.

History is littered with failed Empires, Rome most notably. Let’s stem the tide of our decline before it’s too late.

Dick Sheehan

Westhampton Beach

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