Thu. Jan 27th, 2022

This past Tuesday, Sept. 19, President Donald Trump spoke before the General Assembly of the United Nations at its headquarters in New York. The president began his remarks by appreciating the, “profound honor to stand here in [his] home city, as a representative of the American people, to address the people of the world.” Trump also took the opportunity to thank those nations which have offered humanitarian aid while, “millions of [American] citizens continue to suffer the effects of the devastating hurricanes that have struck [the United States].”

Trump then said to the chamber of heads of state and diplomats that the military of the United States, “will soon be the strongest it has ever been,” and declared the speech’s intent to, “address some of the very serious threats before us today.” Trump then said, “to overcome the perils of the present, we must begin with the wisdom of the past.”

Trump followed that statement by saying, “in America we do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to watch.”

Founder and Vice President of Students for a Democratic Society, SDS, and fourth-year history and education major, Ian Gallagher, confronted this statement by saying, “Since its conception, the United States has imposed its way of life on anybody and everybody it can. Our Constitution is a document that was written by rich, land- and slave-owning white men.”

Gallagher also took issue with the president’s threats and strong language toward North Korea, saying that, “the United States is the only country in history to use nuclear weapons, not once but twice, against another country. Not only that, North Korea didn’t hold its first nuclear test until 2006. Now, that number is at six. This is unlike the number of tests that the U.S has conducted which is at 1,127,” and they further disagreed with Trump’s aggressive stance toward Iran, saying that, “ever since Operation Ajax’s [the CIA’s 1953 program to support a coup against President of Iran, Mohammed Mossadegh] inception, the U.S has sought to control Iran’s oil investments.” They then discussed Trump’s policy of unilateral Iranian nuclear disarmament, saying that, “in order to dismantle Iran’s nuclear program… the U.S needs to decide whether or not we ourselves are going to dismantle our own nuclear program. We need to get rid of our own nuclear stockpile before telling others to do the same.”

Gallagher, in response to Trump’s condemnation of the Cuban government, said that, “in the case of Cuba, no country in the world has done more to provide health care services to LGBTQIA people and correct its mistaken line. Cuba’s health care is one of the greatest in the world and also has one of the highest literacy rates in the world.” Gallagher then said, “in Venezuela, the U.S. has tried and failed to stage and support rightist coups.”

Gallagher concluded by saying, “the main takeaway from Trump’s speech is that [the Trump Administration] will be nothing short of the world’s biggest imperialist player, policing other nations without policing itself. White supremacy, racism, sexism and class violence are the real pillars of the U.S. government. Trump has made that clear time and again and succeeded in doing so at the U.N.”

While Gallagher did explain that their group believed that in his role, “as President of the United States, Donald Trump delivered the perfect speech,” they believed such a speech was appropriate for the office of president because, “it contained everything from hypocrisy and double standards to aggression and jingoism. This speech is the perfect example of when someone points a finger at somebody else, three point back at them.”

The West Chester University College Republicans made a group statement which said, “as the voice of the Republican student population on campus we believe that the president’s work and policies are yielding great results internationally, showing both intelligence and toughness in imposing sanctions on North Korea and stating the obvious truth that not all previous deals and treaties have necessarily been in our nation’s favor.”

The College Republicans also contrasted the Trump Administration’s foreign policy with the Obama Administration’s. “This side of the views is vastly different from the previous administrations whose weak policies embolden North Korea and Iran,” said the West Chester University College Republicans. “Making the world a more dangerous place.” They also said, “it has been long overdue that we have a more respected leader in the White House, so that we are taken more seriously by our adversaries, and not to be overlooked by dictatorships around the world.”

The Students for a Democratic Society meet on Tuesdays in Sykes 209 at 7 p.m. They can be contacted at sdswcupa@gmail.com. The West Chester University College Republicans meet on Tuesdays in the Business and Public Management building in room 213 at 7 p.m. They can be reached at AH844547@wcupa.edu.

Aaron Gallant is a third-year student majoring in urban and environmental planning with minors in anthropology and Spanish. He can be reached at AG851503@wcupa.edu.

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