Former US President Donald Trump has a chip on his shoulder called Democratic America. With his recent announcement that he is seeking the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, Trump is so eager to make a comeback that he will do whatever it takes to sideline his GOP rivals. But the bigger danger here is that with nothing to lose, a second term in office could destroy America.
If his first tenure in the White House is any indication, Trump can wreak havoc both domestically and abroad. Michael Dimock and John Gramlich at PewResearch note that even before he took office in 2016, “Trump divided Republicans and Democrats more than any new CEO in the previous three decades. The gap only became more pronounced after he became president.”
In addition, according to Jeff Tollefson, writing for Nature, Trump “has exacerbated an epidemic that has killed more than 200,000 people in the United States, rolled back environmental and public health regulations, and undermined science and scientific institutions.”
Trump is more accused of destroying America, but Tom Nichols writes in The Atlantic that Trump destroyed one of the most important American virtues: seriousness, “our understanding that ideas, actions, and words matter.”
“The collapse of seriousness is the greatest loss we’ve suffered under Trump, one of the most serious people ever to occupy a position of great power in America,” laments Nichols. Indeed, most, if not all, of Trump’s press conferences have felt more like a comedy show than a presidential one. Many of the things he said caused many to stumble. Trump’s return will bring laughter to the White House press room, but not in a good way.
On the foreign front, Trump has made America a laughing stock and brought shame and embarrassment to the American people. Former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Council on Foreign Relations Senior Fellow Philip H. Gordon in Foreign Policy noted that Trump has “reneged on many contracts and agreements, undermined the credibility of US defense guarantees, and intimidated.” and denigrates allies and allies with tyrants who threaten those allies and the United States.”
Trump made far-reaching policy decisions that completely changed the American position on important issues. He pulled the US out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, banned travel from Muslim countries, renegotiated NAFTA and pulled out of the Paris Agreement. He partially delayed the Obama administration’s rapprochement with Cuba and met with Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. He pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA, and pulled the US out of the UN Human Rights Council.
The troubling prospect of Trump re-entering the White House as president has many worried, but not necessarily just because of his policies or antics. Trump’s appointments in 2016, such as far-right extremist Steve Bannon, or his own daughter and son-in-law, made many Americans uncomfortable. In a second term, Trump is likely to bring in loyalists who are unfit for the job, and this move will directly affect his domestic and foreign relations decisions, as we have seen during his time in the White House.
Benjamin Waterhouse of the Miller Center notes: “Trump’s choices for cabinet posts and top advisers reflected traditional Republican political leaders and unconventional and inexperienced people who were personally loyal to Trump.”
But these were not the only problems. Trump’s Supreme Court appointments have been troubling, and he has become the first president in history to be impeached twice. Trump also appears to be in touch with many people with radical ideals. Waterhouse notes: “As a candidate and as president, Trump has included white nationalists, white supremacists, and other violent racist, xenophobic, and anti-Semitic organizations among his supporters.”
What America is worried about now, and that includes Democrats as well as Republicans, is Trump 2.0. Trump’s return to the Oval Office will bring division and controversy to the surface. Americans will no longer be able to focus on the issues of the day. Rather, we will be subjected to Trump’s daily shenanigans, self-promoting or offensive tweets, raucous press conferences and speeches, and just a general deterioration of everyday American life as we know it.
America’s image abroad will suffer, and foreign leaders and diplomats will once again laugh at America. Trump will bring shame to America because he is ruining relations with allies and making friends with dictators.
Americans are worried about Trump’s comeback, and they should be. Trump will destroy America as we know it. He has already started doing this in his first term. The second term will give him the opportunity to achieve his goal.