Donald Trump, Peacemaker?

Printed from: http://newbostonpost.com/2017/01/20/donald-trump-peacemaker/

Donald Trump has reached out his hand. Will his enemies reach back?

In a stirring inaugural address, the new president called on Americans to rediscover patriotism, and said that by so doing we would “rediscover our loyalty to each other.”

“When you open your heart to patriotism there is no room for prejudice,” President Trump said in his brisk speech Friday, which took just shy of 16 minutes.

He called for unity without trying to impose it from the top down.

“We must speak our minds openly, debate our disagreements, but always pursue solidarity,” he said. “When America is united America is unstoppable.”

The use of the term “solidarity” is interesting, calling to mind the free trade union movement in Communist Poland of the 1980s that helped lead to the downfall of Communism. It’s also a term often used by St. John Paul II, who reigned as pope from 1979 to 2005.

It’s not just a sit-in-a-circle kind of togetherness he’s talking about. It’s connecting on a deep level on the path to love.

For those used to seeing a combative Trump, his only targets were Islamic terrorists and unnamed Washington insiders. Instead, he went out of his way to try to paint a picture of a better future for everyone in this country.

“America will start winning again. Winning like never before,” he said. “… We will bring back our jobs, we will bring back our borders, we will bring back our wealth, and we will bring back our dreams.”

Children in the city or on the plains look up at the same night-time sky and have the same dreams, he said: “And they are infused with the breath of life by the same almighty creator.”

He also went out of his way to try to mollify the hyperventilating foreign commentators who are still aghast at the idea of a President Trump.

Trump has suggested he’ll be less of a foreign adventurer than some of our previous presidents. He hit that theme in his speech.

“We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example. We will shine for everyone to follow,” Trump said.

He certainly let Washington insiders have it, saying they got rich while Americans elsewhere got poor. This populist theme led to one of the more memorable lines of the speech — and one that reminds us that not all Trump’s political targets are Democrats:

“What truly matters is not which party controls our government but whether our government is controlled by its people,” Trump said.

A new president traditionally gets a honeymoon when he take office, when politicians and commentators wish him well and cut him a little slack. President Trump didn’t even get much pre-wedding peace, let alone a honeymoon.

Even if you don’t like him, though, take a listen to his words. He’s trying to reach us as our new leader. It’s a good start.

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