Our past isn't that glorious and Donald Trump actually fits in pretty well in the hallowed halls of the White House.
After last week’s election, my first thoughts were about how we could change the name of our federation of states to New America or somehow separate our future from our glorious history.
Then I remembered that our past isn’t that glorious and Donald Trump actually fits in pretty well in the hallowed halls of the White House.
We don’t have the same clear pictures of America in her youth because our internet connections were really bad in the 1800s, but as she matures, America has become that damaged girl who only wants to date bad boys who don’t really have her best interests at heart.
As I watched Americans elect a man who is still hiding his taxes, admitted to sexually assaulting many women, denied sexually assaulting a dozen women who came forward to confirm his claims, and inflamed and engaged some of the worst people in the country, I was sad for the United States.
I thought about how sad it was that this man would have the same business cards as men like George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln.
Then I remembered men like Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. Trump will look just fine in that fraternity’s sweater.
Starting on the right side of the aisle, W. has been a new man, especially since he left the White House. But in his life before politics, he was a boozer who was a “C’s get degrees” guy who got into Yale - and later the Texas Governor’s Mansion and the White House - because of who his father and grandfather were.
Bill Clinton’s sexual escapades haunted his past, his tenure in office and helped destroy his wife’s chances at the White House. Clinton’s impeachment hearings might have been the first and only time C-SPAN was rated R.
In memoirs, Barack Obama admitted to drug use in his youth. His eight years in office have been among the cleanest, most scandal free ever, but he was no choirboy before his political life began.
Richard Nixon was run out of office for his deceitful and illegal activities. But even Nixon got re-elected before he was forced out of office.
Gerald Ford was a good man. That’s why Americans kicked him to the curb.
Jimmy Carter beat Ford in an election between two good guys. In stark opposition to 2016, America had no bad choice. She was forced to spend the next four years with a Southern Baptist Sunday School teacher. Of course, she changed course away from the “good guy” and picked Ronald Reagan whose personal life was interesting to say the least and brought hearings for lying, cheating and stealing back to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
Exactly 138 administration officials were investigated, indicted or convicted under Reagan’s rule. That’s still a record by the way.
Trump has a chance to eclipse it, but the bar is pretty high there.
Trump won last Tuesday and it shouldn’t have been as big of a surprise as it was. People were quick to negate the fact that Hillary Clinton could have been the first woman elected to the White House. She wasn’t.
I think I know why. America still likes her bad boys.
Clinton faced these statistics in addition to her own personal and family scandals from 30 years in public life. Twenty- three states have never elected a woman governor. Twenty- two more have never had a female Senator. Lisa Rochester won a seat in Congress from Delaware last week. That took Delaware off of the list of states who have never sent a woman to Washington D.C. Now only Iowa, Mississippi and Vermont are on the list.
How can this be true in 2016?
We still have a long way to go and I don’t think anything that has happened in 2016 has moved us one step closer to being a society where everyone is truly equal. Glass ceilings are everywhere and they are only being reinforced.
Maybe 2017 and the years that follow will be better.