Donald damage
LOOKING ASKANCE - Atty. Joseph Gonzales (The Freeman) - October 25, 2020 - 12:00am

A BBC survey has tried to measure the impact of Trump on the rest of the world. The headline even goes “How Trump has changed the world”.

Everything else in the article goes steadily downhill, so perhaps the headline should have been “How Trump stained the world”. Or perhaps how he regressed it (how he damaged it?).

Europeans surveyed about their positive perception of America scored it lowest in 20 years. So Trump managed to make Europeans feel more superior about not living in the US. I bet many Asians are counting themselves lucky they aren’t in that tyrant-mocracy.

Filipinos wearing rose-colored lenses about America, how it champions human rights, feminism, LGBTQ activism, and how it promotes the environment, education, manners, good governance and other virtues, suddenly had those lenses ripped off when they found themselves face-to-face with a foul-mouthed leader who couldn’t utter a lofty principle if his hairstyle depended on it.

So much for idolizing the Kanos.

Instead, America is where we see injustice happening.

Principles, the delicate balancing of interests, the making of moral choices - we haven’t seen those being deployed by Trump. It’s all about naked power and who will push selfish interests --emboldening our local leaders, who see that it’s possible to get away with power grabs and corruption in an advanced country. What more, therefore, in our banana republic?

But despite projecting America as a terrible, frightening place where ICE agents await illegal immigrants, ready to tear apart families and separate babes from their mothers at borders, that didn’t really stop more immigrants from trooping to its borders. More Central and South Americans were detained at the Mexican border in 2019, reports BBC. A case of heightened enforcement, or increased desperation from illegal aliens?

Fake news proliferated all over the globe under Trump’s watch. BBC reports that while it originally meant false stories, under Trump, it has come to signify anything Trump disagrees with (BBC fails to mention that the cabal Trump brought with him to the White House, Kellyanne Conway included, invented “alternative facts” to offer an alternate reality to incredulous fact-checkers).

The Philippines is mentioned in the damning report, as we supposedly took a cue from Trump, with world leaders branding disagreeable stories as “fake”. I beg to disagree, as BBC seems to forget we were the first test tube baby of Cambridge Analytica, when Facebook was harnessed to swing the Philippine electorate towards the desired candidate, with the feeding of cleverly crafted tall tales to gullible voters.

After its success in interfering with our May 2016 elections, Hillary was the next victim, as suddenly, conspiracy theories galore proliferated during the November 2016 American elections. Plus, the same tactical fake news (that the Pope had endorsed a political candidate) which was so successfully used in our 2016 presidential elections, was then deployed in America, with Trump supposedly being anointed by his holiness.

World peace? Trump crystallized tensions with China, what with his trade war and branding COVID-19 as the China virus. So much for fostering harmonious relations. All he managed to do was make China more belligerent, strongmen emboldened, and his own country become a backyard for domestic terrorism (private militias? Rifle-toting protesters upset at having to wear masks? Plots to kidnap their own governor? What depths have you descended to, America?).

The BBC warns that Trump’s reckless disregard for the environment may make climate change irreversible. That’s not the only thing that may not be reversible, though. Democratic principles, respect for human rights, and yes, even world peace might be at stake.

American voters, you have not just America, but the world, in your hands.

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