After the election
Students reflect on how they think President Trump is doing his first week in office.
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In the past couple of months, there have been rallies, protests, and people stating bold claims against the person who is now the President of the United States. Within days and weeks after his election, several of his supporters have tweeted to him their regret and disappointments with his actions.
Not only is the country considered to be divided, but so are the halls of Biddeford High School. Many of the students have their own opinions about the mark President Trump is making. Senior Ben Othmer feels the President behind the Twitter account didn’t necessarily fulfill all of his promises.
“[Before Trump got elected], I thought there were good ideas that weren’t quite delivered correctly,” said Othmer. “Some of them were brought to an extreme during the election. I think he’s followed through, but I think he’s done it in different ways than people expected him to.”
Othmer believes that some of the things President Trump promised over the course of the election may have been misinterpreted by the people of America. Therefore, he feels there may be a little bit of confusion.
“He said a lot of ‘this is bringing the [United States] back to the people,’” said Othmer. “I don’t know if that’s what his opinion is, I just think there’s a lot of stuff that people misinterpreted.”
For alternative education teacher Lauren Wynne, she disagrees with Othmer. She believes Trump is following through with his word.
“I think he’s totally following through with what he said,” said Wynne. “I think he said what he meant. I think he probably promised more than he was capable of doing. He’s trying to do everything that he said really quickly.”
Junior Eliza Gilliam agrees with Wynne. She too, feels that Trump is following through with the promises he made before getting elected.
“I think that he’s definitely following through with what he’s saying,” said Gilliam. “I like Trump, and I know a lot of people don’t. But, I think it’s good that he’s following through with what he promised. But I don’t think everything he’s doing is good for everyone. Then again, I think everyone should respect him because he’s president.”
On a similar scale, Wynne feels that the people should respect the president. No matter how you feel about the president, she believes people should still have respect.
“Even if you don’t like the person, you’re required as a citizen to respect the office,” said Wynne. “I think it’s really against our country for people to be really trying to create all kinds of issues. It’s okay if you don’t like him, but we do have a democratic process.”
As a female, Gilliam feels her support of Trump leads her to getting judged by many people due to Trump’s controversial opinions of women. Among these people are some of her family members.
“Even my cousins, they’re very liberal,” said Gilliam. “They unfriended me on Facebook because I’ll share stuff [in support of Trump]. I get pretty into politics, and I watch a lot of the news.”
A controversial decision made by President Trump includes the executive order on immigration. This permits some refugees from coming into the country, and leads families to having to split up. However, Othmer feels that more precautions, than what the country already has, for refugees to enter the country is a good idea.
“I don’t want to say stopping people from coming into the country,” said Othmer. “But limiting it and making it go through a legal process the majority of the time was a good idea.”
Before the executive order, for refugees to enter the United States, they needed to go through several steps. These steps included multiple interviews, documentation, and several other requirements. President Trump claims this order is to prevent terrorist attacks. However, senior Jordan Cook doesn’t necessarily agree with that statement.
“I definitely disagree [with the executive order],” said Cook. “All of the terrorist attacks we’ve had pretty much, are from America or countries he hasn’t even banned.”
Even though refugees do go through a legal process before coming into the country, Gilliam feels that the process is not enough to keep the country safe from attacks.
“But because of our security, with letting people in, it wasn’t good at all,” said Gilliam. “Obama was just letting anyone in. We had no security.”
In contrast to Gilliam, senior Andrea Castro feels that the President’s executive order on immigration is for his own benefit, and he only seems to be doing things right by his standards and not the for the country.
“This ban is targeting race and not reducing terror attacks,” said Castro. “A lot of people target Muslims and look at them as a race when it’s a religion. At times, I think Trump mixes the two up.”
Another controversial topic from Trump is his pick for Secretary of Education, Betsy Devos. This caused a stir in both parties. Whether they supported him or not, a lot of people disagreed with this choice due to the lack of experience Devos has in the field of education.
“I think [Betsy Devos is] an awful choice,” said Othmer. “As Trump being the president, he didn’t necessarily have experience to do what he did either. .
Othmer tries to see where Trump is coming from. While he believes Devos may be able to succeed in her position, he thinks Trump needs to look at how the country will react.
“I think he needs to look more into whose qualified [versus] a name that people know,” said Othmer. “Instead of ‘I know this person, I think they’ll do a good job’ to more of an ‘everyone knows this person will [do] a good job.’”
For Cook, he agrees with Othmer. He believes Devos is not at all a good pick for the position, and that there was bias going into why President Trump nominated her.
“I feel like the only reason she [Betsy Devos] was chosen was because of how many people she endorsed in the past,” said Cook. “It’s not right how they chose her. She had no experience. You should have someone that has experience. It’s not the fact that she’s a Republican that I don’t like her, she doesn’t know anything.”
Even though Cook and Othmer believe Devos is not a good choice for Secretary of Education, Wynne feels more hopeful for Devos. She believes there is a need for improvement in public education, and hopes Devos will be able to tackle it.
“I believe public education has a lot of problems,” said Wynne. “I don’t know what she’s going to do. I’m not really afraid of it. I’d like to see change, so I’m kind of excited about something being done.”
For a lot of the women that support Trump, many people feel confused as to why they would support him. Gilliam believes that the things he said about women weren’t necessarily as bad as they were made out to be. They just appeared worse than what they were because of the media and the attention brought to them.
“People were getting really mad with how he generalized women,” said Gilliam. “But if you think about it, a lot of guys or even women will do that too. But his was brought to the extreme because it was in the media.”
For Castro, how Trump treats women is a very important topic of conversation. She feels that how he treats women isn’t something to be okay with.
“He is treating them [women] very poorly,” said Castro. “He makes Planned Parenthood look bad just because they give abortions – one of the many things they provide for women. Whether you are higher up or not, there is no need to treat women with such disrespect.
While some of the decisions the President made may not have turned out how people thought, Othmer believes that everyone has their right to voice their discomfort with the results of his Presidency.
“I don’t necessarily hate him, and I don’t necessarily regret that I supported him,” said Othmer. “I just think that there are things that are being done in a way that I didn’t expect them to be done. So, I don’t necessarily regret supporting some of the things he promised to the country.”
Looking at the bigger picture, Othmer hopes that America will be great. If President Trump plans to make this country great, Othmer feels there is a lot to do to make it that way.
“I think there’s a lot that can be done for this country,” said Othmer. “I think we need to stop being so divided. Everybody needs to just support one another. Everyone needs to join together, no matter where you’re from, or you’re background, or who you are and what you’ve done. You live in America. You’re an American.”