Does the President Really Want Four Non-White Congresswomen to Leave the United States?

Recently, President Trump has been under fire for suggesting that four congresswomen should go back to their “home” countries and fix the mess there before criticizing the United States. There are many things wrong with these tweets, but it is important to understand that this type of thinking is both dangerous and racist. He and other Americans who may agree with him on this have the right to say what they want, but they must understand that there may be consequences for making such opinions public. Although I am skeptical of society dictating what is or is not acceptable speech on the premise that it may be detrimental to free speech and lead to fascism, these four congresswomen (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley, and Ilhan Omar) are Americans and should not be treated like foreign agents or scum because of their race or ethnicity.

When the president made comments like these, he was implying that if someone is a race or ethnicity other than white or has a national origin other than that from the United States, he or she is not capable of being American or making decisions to benefit the country. I disagree with much of the politics of these four congresswomen and do not believe that moving towards socialism equals progress, but they are no less Americans than anyone else, nor are they any less capable of helping to lead the country. Three of the four were actually born in the United States, and Congresswoman Omar, a Somali refuge, became an American citizen years ago. Racist thinking has not disappeared in the twenty-first century, and there are still remnants of white supremacy, even if it is not always blatant. Racist and anti-immigrant attitudes are detrimental to our society and create divisions among the populace.

The next line of thinking that is dangerous from these tweets is the idea that if one disagrees with his or her government and believes change is necessary, that person should leave the country. So, we are not permitted to criticize our government now? We cannot suggest changes that would be a better fit from the status quo? What happened to free speech? Our founding fathers did not keep quiet and allow the government to continue down the road of tyranny. Why is our time period any different? Governments are often corrupt and need correcting. Americans are patriots when they speak out against ills in the government, and the idea is to effect change in the country and around the world. The people who want to shut down speech that they deem as hateful towards the United States should go back and relearn American history and regain an understanding of the principles upon which our country was founded. Whether we are talking about racial issues, policies of war, or being over-taxed, Americans should speak out.

Another perspective that the president’s tweets brought up is that other countries are inferior to the United States and should be treated as if the people there are less than human. Granted, there are many countries that are undesirable for living and do not provide a place for the people to exercise their rights, but this type of thinking goes deeper than just being proud to be American. It causes Americans to believe that because these countries are not ideal democracies or whatever, they should be subject to and victim of the American-dominated economic and military systems that exist. This leads to the justification for invasion or economic sanctions against countries that do not comply with the United States government, which then leads to further problems in those countries and causes them to become even more impoverished. It is good to be proud of your country, but when it crosses the line and begins to justify the destruction of another one, it becomes problematic.

Representative Omar has been further targeted because of her stances on foreign policy, but in a number of ways, she brings up difficult issues that many are not willing to talk about. President Trump and others have gone as far as to erroneously claim that she supports al Qaeda and is anti-Semitic. She has made comments about how Muslims are discriminated against because of the actions of a few radical ones and has even suggested that American foreign policy is partly to blame for terrorist attacks, both ideas that are true. She has also lashed out against how politicians are bought by the Israeli lobby to further the interests of the Israeli government, which also has merit. The thought in the United States is that if you criticize the Israeli government or the big lobby bucks associated with it, you are somehow anti-Semitic. Just like if you criticize the American government and its policies towards the status quo of war and bullying, you are considered anti-American or unpatriotic.

When did we get to the point of a fascist-leaning mindset that prevents us from speaking freely and engaging in political discourse? Instead, we are going to condemn and marginalize those who have a difference of opinion, and it is often worse for non-whites. Let us stop with our nativist and racist attitudes, our ideas that American dominance around the globe is a just cause because we have the power to do so, and false patriotism that leads to the blind acceptance of governmental actions.

Thank you for reading, and please check out my book, The Global Bully, and website .
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Published on July 17, 2019 03:31
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