Trump: Are Character Flaws Necessarily Leadership Flaws?

  • Sam Mire
  • May 23, 2017 5:26PM

The shockwaves of the Trump presidency have been more wide-reaching and persisting than most could have predicted. The democratic election of one man has seemingly altered the way in which the civilized world views such fundamental concepts as criminality, evidence, objectivity, principle, character, and fact.

Most of these words and the ideas that they denote have a fixed definition which assures that no person may substantially misrepresent them while being taken seriously. One term from this lot, however, has proven particularly volatile to the seismic rifts caused by the 2016 election, having been distorted to the point that it is nearly beyond true definition: objectivity.

The concept of objectivity has always been inherently impaired. Every person’s vision is shrouded with biases which we are more or less conscious of. In the era of Trump-mania, biases have been exaggerated, in many cases willfully, to the point where the lines in the sand which define ‘objectivity’ have been all but washed away by the flood of biased thinking and reporting.

One side has stretched the art of demonization past its known limits, verbally denouncing “fascism” and the rebirth of the Third Reich while employing violent tactics to silence opposing thought in a manner which the Fuhrer would be proud of.

In what appears to be a phenomenon that is part reactionary, part wishful thinking, and partly motivated by a genuine sense of patriotism and renewed hope in conservatism, many Trump supporters are guilty of losing sight of what it means to be objective, as well. I know that I have written off countless Trump-related headlines as fantastical, partisan smear jobs not worthy of the slightest consideration. I am guilty of diminished objectivity, though I feel I am far from the worst offenders in this respect.

This has, admittedly, impeded me from engaging in a deep dive examining Trump’s flaws- he is human, after all- and how they may have played a role in his leadership to date. 

I maintain that Donald Trump’s election marks a significantly positive and necessary re-directing of the United States’ priority list, even if only for four years. The fruits of the election results will eventually be undeniable, in my opinion, especially when the alternative vision for America is considered. However, the abandonment of all objectivity and self-reflection by those who oppose this view of national optimism does not justify a move toward blind partisanship as a reaction.