Thu | Sep 21, 2017

Ronald Mason | 'President Trump' - A call for vigilance in Ja

Published:Sunday | November 13, 2016 | 11:00 AM

On November 8, 2016, the citizens of the United States of America had an election. The results of the election have been unequivocal and significant in ways we are going to become aware of over the next two years.

The Republican Party now controls 238 seats in the House of Representatives, 52 seats in the Senate, and the majority of the governorships in states and also in state houses and state senates. The results are overwhelming.

What is striking is how racism, bigotry, xenophobia and the 'us-versus-them' siege mentality have come to the forefront. The impact of the white trailer park constituency and its instant assertion of power bring back a phrase that used to be heard frequently years ago: 'if you are white, you are all right; if you are brown, stick around; and if you are black, turn back.'

The person elected to lead the cabal is one Donald John Trump - rich, crass, crude, uninformed, inexperienced in the ways of governance and very mercurial. Welcome to USA 2017, where race and class divisions are back with a vengeance.

 

HEAVY BAGGAGE

 

Then again, his challenger, Hillary Rodham Clinton, came with heavy, heavy baggage. She was challenged, not only by the political opposition, but also by her own past. The stench of entitlement that accompanied her was just too much to overcome. The result is that America will now bid farewell to all things related to the House of the Clintons. She will never be indicted, as the political leadership will remember the old adage, 'But for the grace of God, there go I."

This is a call to a divided nation, where each person needs to formulate his own action plan for survival and any personal advancement. Again, the old phrases come rushing back, because the old divisions and challenges have also resurfaced. Anyone for Malcolm X, 'by any means necessary'.

The world will react in their best interest to this America which cannot lay claim to being the leader of the free world. Mexico has already said it will not renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. Angela Merkel of Germany has displayed a lack of enthusiasm and is very concerned.

Trump has told Japan and South Korea to get its own nuclear weapons. The mutual defence pact with NATO is subject to the review of each country's account. If you are paid up, we may answer. The Iranian nuclear deal is a multi-party, negotiated deal, inclusive of China. The world will seek new leadership. Which country is prepared to be led by a bigoted buffoon who thinks he knows more than his generals?

The impact on Jamaica must start with a ramping up of security measures for our tourism product. What if the anti-American internationals were to target American tourists in Jamaica? Will the buffoon extract commitments from us to provide lockstep support for his position in the areas of trade, diplomacy and his cultural exports?

Strange, he may provide us with respite from the current imposition of the American gay-rights position. The impact on Jamaica, as far as the undocumented immigration issue, is concerned could have significant detrimental consequences. We have hundreds of thousands of undocumented Jamaican citizens living in the USA. Remittances from the Jamaican diaspora run within the region of US$2.4 billion. Our single largest trading partner for goods and services is the USA. The BPOs that we currently push for job creation are geared to satisfy America's demand.

We cannot feed ourselves or even our animals without America. We worry when they restrict the export of firearms to Jamaica. The American government issues reports on our human trafficking, drug enforcements, border security and the dollarisation of our economy. All of this gets worse with the election of the buffoon, Donald J. Trump.

 

SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT

 

If ever there was the need to forge sustainable self-development programmes it is now. 'Grow what you eat, eat what you grow' is now a major necessity. Archer Daniels Midlands should not control a large section of our diet. Development of new markets is an imperative in the new scheme of things. America is a 330 million-population market - affluent, but still only 330 million. India's is 1.1 billion, China's 1.3 billion, and the continent of Africa has 58 different countries. Canada is a sane, friendly competent country. Donald J. Trump does not need a place of prominence in our affairs.

Unfortunately, the USA has a dark side to its history that has stretched over many decades. When the American population becomes sufficiently incensed, they resort to extreme methods. America assassinates political leaders. The modern era saw the removal of John F. Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, unsuccessful attempts on Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan. We need to acknowledge that America has used this method as a corrective tool.

This election is a call for vigilance in Jamaica. We could have new and more difficult challenges. The squabble over inconsequential municipal elections must be put in context. Get ready; we may just have to start to take matters seriously, for a change.

- Ronald Mason is an attorney-at-law and Supreme Court mediator. Email feedback to columns@gleanerjm.com and nationsagenda@gmail.com.