US Viewpoint: A crisis of Trump's own making

  • Jim Wallis

President Donald Trump

President Donald Trump

Source: Sojourners

Rev Jim Wallis writes in Sojourners today: First, racism is always based on lies; it always has been and always will be. We saw that again in Donald Trump's address to the nation on Tuesday. It was more of the same lies he has used since he announced his presidential candidacy in 2015. He used his lies last night to try to justify his border wall, the signature issue of his political campaign and administration, which people on both sides of the aisle have said has nothing to do with border security and everything to do with Donald Trump's central message: You should fear people who aren't white. The wall would be Donald Trump's 2,200-mile monument to white supremacy. As I have said before, in Trump's political campaign he become the Chief Tempter of America's Original Sin. Now as president, he has become the Chief Defender of America's Original Sin.

Second, last night many feared that Trump would designate his falsified national security crisis a "national emergency," which would justify bypassing the legislature to fund the wall. Such an act would violate the separation of powers in the Constitution, continuing Trump's dismissals of presidential protocols, practices, and the rule of law, potentially a first step on the road to dictatorship. Thankfully, Trump did not make that declaration - yet. But make no mistake: If President Trump concludes from this episode that he can invent an emergency to justify ignoring the limits the other branches of government, the survival of our democracy is in grave jeopardy. People of faith need to get ready to respond strongly if and when he takes this step and demand that Congress stand up for our democracy. Let's be clear: There is no national security emergency at our southern border, but there is a national emergency and it is Donald Trump. There is also a humanitarian crisis that Trump helped create. And right now, he is only making it worse so that he can appeal again to the fear of his base.

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Tags: Jim Wallis, Donald Trump, Wall, Mexico

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