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OP-ED: Time is a flat circle

  • Published at 01:21 am January 24th, 2021
biden inauguration
Former US presidents Bush, Clinton, and Obama spotted at Joe Biden’s inauguration REUTERS

Will Joe Biden continue the legacy of his predecessors?

The Clinton presidency lasted from 1993 to 2001. The Bush presidency lasted from 2001 to 2009. The Obama presidency lasted from 2009 to 2017. 
During that time, the rampant aggression that continued since the start of the last century in the name of protecting American interests pretty much continued unchecked, culminating in gruesome events such as the Kunduz Hospital Airstrikes that transpired during the Obama era in 2015. 

Racial tensions have always been high in the land of the “free,” and no amount of blue has been able to eradicate it, with departments such as border patrol operating well into the Obama years. 

Despite being home to some of the most talked about billionaires in the entire world, the inequality in America has never even come close to being solved. In fact, following the 2008 financial crisis, which was solved using the money of the lay people, they were left in the streets to die and rot. 

This happened during the Obama era as well, but things weren’t very different during Trump’s tenure either. Even during the end days of the Trump administration, public taxes are being redirected for “democracy” programs in Venezuela, while the average lay people can’t even pay their rent. 

Speaking of Covid-19, a lot of Trump supporters were against lockdowns for various reasons. While some reasons are just part of the nonsensical white Christian rhetoric about God-given rights and freedom, others have an air of legitimacy to them. 

While the lockdowns can’t generally touch people in the position of power and those with a level of economic privilege (Kim Kardashian infamously hosted a private getaway for herself and her friends and family during the height of the crisis. While this was eventually picked up by the media, it didn’t go beyond some harmless jokes and some statements like “dumb celebrities being dumb”), when it comes to the lay person, having to stay indoors is not an option most of the time, as the terms of his survival dictate that he has to go out of his house and earn the right to exist. 

Trump supporters were lampooned and dragged around the mud, and while there are times when they do deserve this (even though policies like this basically do more harm than good, and the good it does is basically provide a few laughs), this was one thing they should have been taken seriously on, and this is one thing they should have been consulted on, even though they are the “enemy.” 

What I’m trying to say is, there are concrete reasons that resulted in someone like Trump being nominated. I’ve been reading a book on witchcraft, where real life accounts are seen through a modern historical perspective, and much of these events transpired due to the horrid living and economic conditions of the time. 

Life was uncertain and full of suffering, and thus, people turned to something that could provide absolute answers. This is something the author of the book espouses herself, and looking at the literature that surrounds the problem of Islamic extremism of the 21st century, this view makes sense. 

Problem is, both Democrats and Republicans generally share similar policy grounds. Republicans are staunch supporters of drone strikes. Democrats are fans of it too, although they require it to be done by a person of colour. And this is where the true colours of the Democrats come into play. 

While they seem progressive with their so-called liberal policies, under a new coat of paint, they use the same car and pump money into the same horrid engine. The American liberal policy is based on a history and identity that is false. America was never the so-called land of the brave; they were never the so-called friends of the oppressed. 

From inspiring the Nazis and giving them a way out through things such as Operation Paperclip during WWII, to Biden’s endorsement of the Israeli apartheid state during the era of global war, their foreign policy was always rife with war and destruction. And through the attack on workers in the banana republics during the 1920s and the bailing out of corporate entities through the exploitation of the working class in the days of late-stage capitalism, their national policy has always been in favour of fat cats in expensive suits. 

For his stance on US imperialism alone, Joe Biden should be condemned by the educated populace all around the world. But it’s the legacy he will build on and the legacy he will leave behind that should be truly feared. Keep in mind the fact that America has been swinging from red to blue for decades now. 

Both Democrats and Republicans have given rise to conditions for someone like Trump to rise. On the ground level, the silent, mistreated majority that Trump gave the voice to has lost faith in Republicans and entities like QAnon. Two things can happen at this point. Since their messiah turned out to be false, and they are opining similar opinions to the ground level leftist activists (on some points, anyway), they might finally see the error of their ways and join a big progressive push that would help people like Sanders and AOC. 

But since that rarely happens, and their loyalty to the white Christian ethno-state identity -- the same identity that America was built upon, by the way -- is still unwavering (which isn’t surprising, because traditional identities like this that are based on religion are absolute in their scope, and have existed for centuries. These are not systems that one can change overnight), they might very well become more violent and more active in the days to come. 

And when something like that happens, all someone will need to do, is come riding on a Republican ticket, and learn from Trump’s mistakes. For if Joe Biden continues the legacy of his ancestors (his policies and cabinet picks indicate he will), then as a writer for the Atlantic has argued, the next dictator won’t be this incompetent, and will be much more dangerous.

Nafis Shahriar is a student of business and a freelance writer.

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