Reflecting on the Trump presidency


Cameron Muniz

View of the US Capitol in March 2017, taken on our 8th grade trip to D.C.

OWEN HARDY, Staff Writer, Editor

I will always remember the morning of Wednesday, November 9th, 2016. My blaring alarm signaled the start of a new day. Little did I know, this day, and the four years following it, would be different. 

The first thing I did after getting up was go on my phone.  I started to type in “Who won the elect-” but before I could finish, Google was showing a picture of Donald Trump under my search in progress. This took me a very long time to register, and even now, it still doesn’t seem real. Shocked, disappointed, and terrified, I thought ahead about the next four years, and how I could prevent this from happening again.

For me, the Trump presidency has been the first one that I have been politically aware and active during. Trump was elected when I was in 8th grade and has served throughout my high school career. During this time, I have learned a lot about American politics and government. (Thanks U.S. History teachers!) 

I have also been able to put this to good use, as I am now 18 and was able to vote in the 2020 election. 

Reflecting over the past years, I see that the Trump administration has done a great deal of damage to the country. At every political crossroads faced, he has chosen to divide instead of unite. Split up instead of join. Build tension instead of dissolve it. Party lines are more apparent now than ever before.

Trump has left us in a critical state. COVID-19 cases, as well as distrust in science and media have never been higher. This is extremely dangerous to the safety and future of our nation. Time and time again, he has let his excessive pride get the best of him, making decisions that have greatly harmed the American public. To me, America has never felt more divided. 

Today, with the inauguration of President Joe Biden, this may change. Many Americans have been looking forward to this day for four excruciatingly long years. It is a historic day, one to celebrate. Yet, even more importantly, it is a day for reflection.

When we wake up tomorrow morning, the nation will not be fully healed. There will still be a global pandemic running rampant, claiming thousands of deaths each day. There will still be people convinced that Trump had the election stolen from him. There will still be white supremacist groups all over the country. 

But starting today, at 12:00 P.M., there will be hope once again. Hope that despite the country’s fractured state, there may be a path forward. One in which people of different opinions can coexist, disagreeing without violence. One in which we can trust our scientists and journalists, without dismissing anything that we don’t agree with, calling it “fake news.” One in which we can rebuild our trust in American democracy, something that has been crucial to the nation ever since its founding.

Finally, after four years, we have a reason to celebrate. But more importantly, we must also take this opportunity to reflect on all that has changed for the worst, so that we can repair these things. We must identify the deep divisions our nation conceals, so that we can work to start repairing them. After all, America can only truly be great if we are united.