Donald Trump has a philosophy which is opposite of that of Mahatma Gandhi, who declared that “means are everything”. He was willing to sacrifice even the most advantageous of outcomes for himself and his families if the way in which such triumphs were earned jarred his “inner voice”. For Donald Trump, and this is a trait that has lasted throughout his lifetime, what counts is to win. And means available is kosher if it brings him closer to such an outcome. And it must be admitted that such an approach has served Trump well. Despite several near-disasters in his business dealings, the New York construction and lifestyle magnate has held on to his billionaire status. Were he the hyper-erratic individual the 45th President of the United States is portrayed as in much of mainstream media globally, such an outcome would have been impossible. Good luck is seldom sufficient for such spectacular wins as have occurred during the course of Donald J. Trump’s career, although this is ignored by his detractors. Judging by the two relatives he has pitch-forked into the Administration as formal members of Team Trump, the President has not let go of the wells of liberalism which characterise that city. Of course, it is evident that in the case of Donald Trump, the depth of liberal waters in the “well” of his psyche seems to be at a considerable depth, far more so than in the case of his attractive and capable daughter Ivanka and her devoted spouse, Jared Kushner. Both are clearly liberals in their social attitudes, and it is therefore little surprise that their reputations have been the target of sniper attacks by ideologues of the ferocity of Steve Bannon, in whose exit the two are known to have played a role, howsoever small this may be. Bannon’s abusive references to Ivanka, some directly, made it impossible for the President to retain him on the White House staff, even were the gifted Jewish advisor was not a member of the President’s family. Given the much softer approach of Ivanka Kushner, it is clear that some of Trump’s woes come from the fact that he seems more to ignore rather than take her advice.
Judging by the all too limited public interventions by First Lady Melania Trump, it is reasonable to assume that she too has liberal instincts. Hopefully, both the First Daughter and the First Lady will play a more prominent role in the administration than has been the case thus far. Both seem aware of the fact that the strength of the US is its eclectic and welcoming spirit. Millions of individuals who have traversed tens of thousands of miles to settle in the US have shown themselves to be model citizens, especially the Indian-American community, which, it must be said, is far better represented in the Trump administration than was the case with any of his predecessors. Given this, there is a case for dialling back on the anti-immigration rhetoric that has erupted on the campaign trail from the Republican side. If a fraction of the money spent on what will eventually be a futile effort at keeping immigrants out of the United States, gets expended on methods to fund their education and enhance their skills, it will be found that these individuals will put back many times more into the US Treasury than they cost. The Latino community, in particular, comprises several gifted individuals who just need an opportunity to show their quality. By calling for the US army to shoot at unarmed caravans of intending migrants, the Republican Party is shaming the memory of its greatest son, Abraham Lincoln. What would Lincoln have made of words that seem to have come from Confederacy textbooks that claimed that different races were meant to be separated all their lives? Even within the white population of the US, the majority are 21st century in their views. Only those whites whose lack of application of mind or absence of opportunities have made them an underclass, respond to such hate-filled campaign statements, ideas which echo the delusional screams of the National Socialist German Workers Party in the 1920s. The NSDAP, under its monster of a leader Adolf Hitler, tasted defeat in the field mainly at the hands of the Russian armies, a group that Hitler and his generals thought were incapable of giving a sustained fight to the “racially superior” Germans. 1945 showed the German people just how fallacious such teachings were. The US will remain the world leader in technology and economy only when the welcome mat continues to draw in people from across the world, as indeed it did the ancestors of the very Republican politicians who are frankly racist, at least in their utterances. President Trump must call a halt to such tendencies in his party and ensure that the freedoms and values of democracy remain the lodestar of the US government and those elected to lead it. India, a fellow democracy, expects this of the US President and Vice-President, neither of who has yet found the time to visit the world’s most populous democracy.