By Deeba Abedi
While the media is filled thick with news of the United States’s relationship with Iran, there are a myriad of other woes, which Donald Trump would have to contend with. Things in so many areas of American life are threatened by Islamic radicalism, and many are worried that if Trump does not act quickly to fix many of these problems with the good deals that he promised, America could be in too bad a shape to recover fully for many decades.
For instance, there is the issue of Obamacare, otherwise known as the “Affordable Care Act” which is anything but affordable care. People who were covered under Obamacare because they could not afford insurance are still covered post Obamacare; so for them nothing has changed. However, for everyone else who had insurance, the rates went up as much as 500% and the deductibles are skyrocketing. This means that people postpone not only common bugs that they spread, but also they postpone being seen for possible life threatening and curable ailments as well.
Another area of concern is the US/Russia relations. Putin is seen as an irresponsible man still caught in the “glory” of his KGB past (as he keeps buzzing US warships), whilst Obama is seen as a man who placed many weapons upon Russian borders. Obama expected Russia to have no issues with weapons upon their borders. However, Russia is engaged in a tap dance to stop Turkey from promulgating pipeline deals with Israel, and this favors some of the other villains of what should be called “the Middle Eastern Oppression League”, namely Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Trump has his work cut out for himself when dealing with these issues, especially with Obama having just sent US Special Forces to the area amid Putin’s movement of weapons capable of deploying nuclear warheads on his own Russian borders.
Many call Trump’s issuance of a temporary travel ban, at least in part, race driven. Cries of racial preference and bigotry simply do not apply to Donald Trump for several reasons. For one, Trump is banning travel (or attempting to) from nations that openly sponsor terrorism, such as Iran which gives money to Hezbollah. Furthermore, it should be noted that Islam is not a race, it is a religion. Even with this fact, Trump is not against peaceful Islam either, as is evident in his decision to allow over 85% of the Muslim world to travel at will in and out of America. Not to mention, the previous travel bans that President Obama had followed through before President Trump’s presidency.
In terms of Mexico-America relations, Donald Trump is not trying to divide people, as is often stated. Rather, Trump is suggesting that Mexico has several laws regarding immigration (such as, but not limited it to, no welfare or social aid for migrants) that they enforce. Why is it somehow a demeaning factor if Donald Trump wants to protect America’s culture, jobs, and criminal element in the same way? America is still open for legal immigration, but many of those entering the U.S. illegally are fleeing justice from their native countries. If they cared about the U.S. and respected the U.S. enough to enter legally, then they would be welcome.
The door is left open even for sharia in America when people in the US say that it is “Un-American” to suggest that sharia-abiding Muslims should not be admitted into the United States. Obama makes such a statement even though some forms of sharia are rooted in efforts to undermine American values of liberty and freedom. Trump will need to secure our relationships with nations that want to export terror and those who follow it post the 90-day immigration block (which has been overturned by the courts since), while at the same time not continuing to capitulate as the previous administration did.
Lastly, let us not forget the economy which suggests that roughly one in five households is on some kind of government assistance. Many statistics have shown that the economy is worse for much of “non-big city America” than at any time since the Great Depression. If the SNAP/the food stamp card were not in effect, we would see food lines longer than during the World War II era. Since it is all done electronically now, the poverty is more discreet.
Even some big cities such as Detroit and Cleveland are shells of what they once were, largely due to outsourcing. People who are working full time jobs (or close to it, since Obamacare has worked to lessen full time employment) have found that even in places that are known to have decent economies, can rarely make ends meet. The closing down of factories, at a faster rate than in any time since the 1970s, is a serious concern. It should be noted that America never fully recovered from those losses.
Trump has a lot to overcome. Hopefully he will use the generals in his cabinet to make prudent choices that keep us out of war, just as we hope that he will use people like Karl Ichon to make important deals that would help America in trade. America could certainly be a nation to deploy a few of those populist ideals to good use.
Read this piece in conjunction with Ananya S Guha’s President Trump’s Atavism of Strange Kind.
Dr. Deeba Abedi is an Indian-American writer, Muslim crusader, and Founder of LADI. She tweets @drdeebabedi
Cafe Dissensus Everyday is the blog of Cafe Dissensus magazine, based in New York City, USA. All materials on the site are protected under Creative Commons License.
Read the latest issue of Cafe Dissensus Magazine on ‘Unmasking the Conflict: Making sense of the recent uprisings in Kashmir’, edited by Idrees Kanth, Leiden University, The Netherlands and Muhammad Tahir, Dublin City University, Ireland.