I try to stay current in the news. As a college student nearing graduation, I find it important to keep up with the real world and fit it into my days of class, interviews, papers, and homework. I find that if one tries to understand the world, one can better understand oneself, others, and, of course, one’s studies.
I try to understand perspectives, sides, and viewpoints. I try to dig deeper when talking to my friends and family — why do they hold that opinion? Why did they vote for so-and-so politician?
I’ve come to find that understanding the underlying facets of opinions, causes, and ideals is the keys to understanding issues and why they are so polarizing.
Looking toward the future, I paid close attention to the 2016 presidential election. I heard both sides, considered the options and proposed outcomes and joined the rest of the country in watching what came to be one very memorable election campaign. When November 8 came, I made up my mind. I voted for him. Hear me out.
President Trump is an outsider — Washington has been a broken and inefficient mess with status-quo politicians working there who promise leadership and change but do close to nothing. Why not choose someone from outside of the circle to change a seemingly broken system?
Some three months after the inauguration, our country still seems divided, with news outlets taking sides and pumping vitriol in trying to attract viewers and impede Trump’s American progress. United we stand, divided we fall. In 2008 people heralded change. In January, 2017, change came again.
Trump is to America like a grandfather is to a family — he’s the one who says things that most are afraid to say, very frankly, and guides you, wanting what is best for you, even though at times he comes off as impertinent. We obviously have a lot of problems facing our country — unemployment, ISIS, healthcare, illegal immigration, poverty, racial tensions, issues of police brutality, etc. I believe that it is President Trump’s true intention to try to solve these issues and take them seriously.
As President Trump closes in on his 100th day in office, he has done many things. Let’s first take a look back. On November 21, 2016, Mr. Trump outlined his first 100 days in a video. In which, he promised six key points, all with the aim of emphasizing his principle of “putting America first.” Here they are:
Trade: Withdraw from Trans-Pacific Partnership in favor of bilateral trade deals.
Energy: Cancel restrictions on coal and shale.
Rules & Regulations: For every new regulation, two old regulations must go away.
National Security: Take measures to protect America’s infrastructure from cyber and all attacks.
Immigration: Investigate the abuses of visa programs.
Ethics reform: Impose a five-year ban on becoming a lobbyist after leaving the administration and a lifetime ban on “executive officials lobbying on behalf of a foreign government.”
Now let’s evaluate his progress, adding in some hot topics. I’m staying as objective as I can, taking into account to a certain degree all of our perspectives.
Trade: Keeping his promise, one of the first things to hit President Trump’s desk was an Executive Order withdrawing the U.S. from the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership). Trump is now using trade as a bargaining chip with China on the North Korea situation. Grade: A.
Energy: Another early action item was to reconsider the construction of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines. No construction has yet been approved. Cuts to the E.P.A. will free up funds, much to the horror of Democrats. Grade: B.
Rules & Regulations: Looking at Dodd-Frank, Trump’s GOP Congress is set to repeal portions of it. The Dodd-Frank Act is more than 25,000 pages long and curtails small businesses. With this said, we don’t want another 2007-’08 crisis. This must be handled with care. Grade: A-.
Travel Ban: To begin, Trump’s executive order is not a Muslim ban. It is a way to monitor immigration into our country by vetting immigrants and asylum seekers and keeping out those seeking to bring harm to the United States. Per a January 21, 2016, press release from the Department of Homeland Security, “travelers in the following categories are no longer eligible to travel or be admitted to the United States under the VWP (Visa Waiver Program): Nationals of VWP countries who have traveled to or been present in Iran, Iraq, Sudan, or Syria on or after March 1, 2011 … Nationals of VWP countries who are also nationals of Iran, Iraq, Sudan, or Syria.” So President Trump didn’t single out these countries; President Obama did so long before. Grade: A.
Foreign Policy: Striking Syria in response to Assad’s use of chemical weapons was a change from Trump’s non-interventionist policy. It is good that we finally have some leadership in the White House to show Assad that he can’t continue to get away with atrocities. But Trump didn’t stick to his promise. Grade: B-.
ISIS: Again, Trump is leading the free world against ISIS. True to his campaign promise, we are now “[bombing] the heck out of ISIS.” If the M.O.A.B. strike over Afghanistan doesn’t send a message to ISIS, I don’t know what will. Grade: A.
The Wall & Immigration Law Enforcement: To curb illegal immigration and promote legal immigration, Trump is coming through on his promise to “build the wall.” He is taking steps, first by signing an executive order to have the Department of Homeland Security draft, design, and begin construction. Many people are divided over the issue, but he’s keeping his promise and putting it into action. Grade: A.
Supreme Court: Trump nominated and saw the approval of Neil Gorsuch in under 100 days. The Supreme Court is now at full membership again. A win for conservatives, a loss for liberals. Grade: A-.
Budget: Trump outlines a plan to make the government more efficient and effective. By 2020 the OMB (Office of Management and Budget) promises to devote a greater percentage of taxpayer monies to achieving goals rather than compliance activities. Also, agencies will be held to improving performance and meeting metrics. Grade: A+.
Obamacare/Healthcare: The first attempt at repealing Obamacare did not go as planned as House Speaker Paul Ryan pulled the bill from the House floor before a vote in fear that it wouldn’t pass. Congress is now trying to have a second go around. Things take time but this was a major campaign promise that has yet to come to fruition. Grade: C+.
There is no doubt that President Trump loves his country. Outlined in his first 100 days is how he is going about protecting it and leading. Let’s understand him, let’s hear him out, let’s support him; in doing so, we’ll come together. For us — the “we the people” to whom the Constitution refers — learning how to do that is how we can really make America great again.
Kristen Borowski, originally from Toms River and now a senior at the College of New Jersey, is the founder and editor of the School of Business newspaper, the Bull, Bear & Lion.