You know you’ve got a controversial topic when a single name can cause a rousing debate. The very name ‘Trump’ can be a spark for a very controversial political debate. So many people have their own opinions on the New York Billionaire, and like many controversial topics, people generally tend to share one of two values on Trump. Either you think he’s a spoiled, evil, corrupt, unworldly rich boy dabbling in things he knows nothing about or you think he’s the honest, frank, candidate that America needs right now and that people only hate him because he gives America the undue truth.
Like most controversial topics, neither opinion on Trump is wrong, nor are they entirely correct. Trump is a man who has sharply defined political opinions and lots of money. Furthermore, he cannot be denied — he has the money and the support (leading by a 13 percentile point majority over Ben Carson according to realclearpolitics.com) to claim his status as a legitimate candidate for Presidency. Nobody can deny that.
Now, most people, when asked about Trump, will go off on a long ad hominem attack about why Trump shouldn’t be allowed to buy the Presidency, that he’s an idiot, and a man with bad hair. But how many of you look beyond these shallow characteristics of Trump, and know his actual policies, before criticizing him? How many of you denounce Trump before you even know what he stands for?
A brief rundown of Donald Trump’s policies (as of ontheiIssues.org’s collection of data): Trump is presently pro-choice, opposed to political correctness, supports capital punishment, supports the legalization of drugs and the funding of drug education, opposes Common Core, refutes climate change, values traditional family environments, wishes to continue intervention in the middle east and sever as many threads with China as possible, supports the second amendment, wishes to uphold Medicare and Medicaid, return the control of gay marriage to the states, wishes to end mass Mexican immigration, tax the wealthy for a limited time to end the budget, and help the poor while not permanently supporting them.
A mouthful, still, Trump has some radical positions, but also many reasonable stances. He is certainly a conservative, but his support of Medicare/Medicaid and his stance on drugs are also very moderate, if not liberal. Furthermore, his desire to tax the rich to absolve the debt is an idea that many left-wingers would find agreeable. Yet the right-wing would find his anti-immigration and his desire to continue involvement in the Middle East, as well as many of his other policies, to be acceptable.
Ultimately, Trump is a moderate, with many beliefs on the right side of the spectrum but also several on the left side. And it is for this reason that I believe Trump would be able to help bridge the chasm between the two parties, and pass some substantial legislature. Beyond that, Trump’s moderateness is a great relief from the increasingly radical opinions of candidates from both sides. As much as their supporters would deny it, saying “he’s not a radical, he’s got the right idea, American politics are just too far removed from what I think they should be”, other popular candidates such as Rand Paul and Bernie Sanders are radicals, so much so that they, if elected, would make half of the nation very happy, and half of it very angry. Meanwhile, Trump’s political moderacy would make the government a less divided place, where both compromise and change would be possible realities, and help America maintain its currently unmaintainable strategies.
Having watched the 9/16 debate, my opinion on Trump is somewhat changed. While I still hold my opinions on Trump’s moderate behaviours and that he should be taken more seriously, seeing him in debate was upsetting. His big personality does not seem to help him in debate. His lack of knowledge on foreign policy was disappointing and the fact that he kept mostly silent through the discussion of policies in general shows he simply does not have the experience to stand his ground and argue against other candidates. Despite Trump’s solid platform it seems he just is not in a position to become president, and I believe that as the debates go he will dwindle in popularity.
Many people might disagree with my premise that Trump is a moderate. After all, he has said that “We need to build a wall to keep illegals in Mexico”, and other ridiculous statements. There’s a definite gap between his political stances and his exaggerated metaphors and statements. But while Trump is loud and abrasive, that’s part of his personality. It got you listening to him, after all.