On Saturday, there was a mass stabbing in Minnesota, explosions in New Jersey and in New York.
For the hate and fear candidate, it was a dream come true. For sane people, the reaction was sadness, concern and questions.
Trump was hoping these events would breathe air into his campaign, especially after he had to admit that Barack Obama was indeed born in America.
Above all else, these incidents are a tragedy for families who are mourning and people who are recovering from injuries.
This is also the sort of situation that separates leaders from reality show “stars”.
Hillary Clinton’s response to the news of the explosion in Chelsea was a flawless response by a presidential candidate.
We need to do everything we can to support our first responders – also to pray for the victims. We have to let this investigation unfold.
Hillary Clinton took the responsible approach. Then there’s the tangerine dictator wannabe, Donald Trump who said:
I must tell you that just before I got off the plane a bomb went off in New York and nobody knows what’s going on. But boy we are living in a time — we better get very tough, folks. We better get very, very tough. It’s a terrible thing that’s going on in our world, in our country and we are going to get tough and smart and vigilant.
The available facts at the time did not indicate it was a bomb. In other words, Trump was singing the song of hate toward Muslims and people of color. This is what Trump does. He draws inferences and leaves it to the audience to fill in the blanks with their imaginations.
Trump’s response contained one truthful statement “no one knew what was going on.” The rest was either factually wrong or just more cowboy rhetoric. The explosion had just occurred and an investigation was underway. Crimes are investigated and conclusions are drawn based on evidence – not stereotypes.
Leaders comment on the available facts with an understanding that their words can either be calming or cause a panic. Anyone who has observed Trump’s campaign knows what he was saying in the subsequent portions of his comments. He sang the now familiar song his fans, creating all the imagery of fear, coupled with an assurance that Daddy Trump is the only person capable of protecting people from their fears. That’s what demagogues do, not presidents.
Hillary Clinton showed us how a President responds to the series of events that occurred on Saturday. Presidents get facts before drawing conclusions. She reinforced that point in her response to Trump’s comments.
I think it’s always wiser to wait until you have information before making conclusions, because we are just in the beginning stages of trying to determine what happened.
Drawing conclusions before the facts are in is always irresponsible and potentially dangerous if you’re the president. A president’s comments are seen and heard by allies and enemies, by investors and politicians. The president’s words matter.
Of the two candidates, Hillary Clinton is the only one who understands what that means.
Unlike Trump, Clinton understands a president’s words aren’t said in a vacuum. When a presidential candidate makes irresponsible statements, there are consequences. Allies react, as occurred with Trump’s NATO comments. It was the Obama administration that had to reassure now nervous allies that the U.S. can still be trusted.
The world’s dictators, like Vladimir Putin, welcome a Trump presidency because they see a clown who puts on a show for his fans, but also doesn’t have a clue what he’s doing.
Regardless of personalities and entertainment value, Clinton proved she is presidential. Trump proved he’s a slow learner. While Kelly Anne Conway succeeded in refining the roughest edges of Trump’s rhetoric, the message remains one of demagoguery.
If we look at Clinton and Trump’s responses to the events of Saturday as an interview for the job of president, Clinton is the obvious choice.
Ms. Woodbury has a graduate degree in political science, with a minor in law. She is a qualified expert on political theory with a specific interest in the nexus between political theories and models and human rights.
Based on her interest in human rights and the threats that authoritarian regimes are to them, Ms. Woodbury’s masters thesis examined the influence of politics on the enforcement of international criminal law was cited in several academic studies.
Published work includes case summaries for the War Crimes Research Office.
She has an extensive background doing legal research in international and domestic law.
Ms. Woodbury’s work for politicusUSA includes articles on voting rights, the right to asylum and other civil/human rights.