[NOTE: This post has been updated on 7/28/2020 since it was first posted]
I try really hard every day to not make this a “bash the current president” blog.
The focus of what I’m seeking to do here is to share articles, ideas, podcasts, images, information, videos related to three main things – Education, Faith and The Common Good.
Frequently these days, it appears, almost on a daily basis the current occupant of the White House doesn’t just reject these three core values of this blog, but he actively undercuts and damages these – especially The Common Good.
For me, nothing symbolizes this more clearly than not only his personal rejection of wearing a face mask while in public – which contradicts the medical experts ostensibly advising him – but even speaks ambivalently (at best) and/or negatively about the value of wearing them.
From an “Analysis” in today’s Washington Post: “Trump’s Dumbfounding Refusal to Encourage Wearing Masks”:
But his most stunning comments about masks, arguably, came last week. In an interview with the Wall Street Journal’s Michael C. Bender, Trump went so far as to suggest that masks could be counterproductive.
“Masks are a double-edged sword,” he said. “People touch them. And they grab them and I see it all the time. They come in, they take the mask. Now they’re holding it now in their fingers. And they drop it on the desk and then they touch their eye and they touch their nose. No, I think a mask is a — it’s a double-edged sword.”
Trump even suggested that he views masks as a political statement against him personally.
“It could be, yeah. It could be,” he said. “But it could also be they feel better about it. I mean, I’m okay with it. Look, I’m okay with it. But the mask is a double-edged sword and I see it.”https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020/06/25/trumps-dumbfounding-refusal-encourage-wearing-masks/
UPDATE on 7/28: The most recent direct quote from POTUS#45 on wearing masks that I could find is from July 14th in Politico:
When asked whether he would urge Americans to wear masks, Trump replied: “If it‘s necessary, I would urge them to wear a mask and I would say follow the guidelines.“https://www.politico.com/news/2020/07/14/trump-urges-americans-to-wear-masks-361836
And on July 19th, after the Mike Wallace interview, Fox News ran a story with this headline: Trump says he’s ‘a believer in masks,’ but stops short of national mandate in coronavirus fight
So why won’t I use the current president’s name when referring to him? Why do I use POTUS#45?
First, why don’t I use his name?
It’s simple – his entire public life has been all about putting his name on buildings, wine, ties, steaks, golf courses and more. As the POTUS [President of the United States] – highest public servant in the nation – it’s not supposed to be about him.
By not using his name and only his title, I am honoring the elected office while not furthering its occupant’s insatiable desire to have his name on everything and everywhere.
But why #45 after POTUS?
I do this as a reminder that he is but one man (yes, all men so far) within a line of 44 (actually 43) men before him. While he will forever be a part of this small group who’ve occupied the Oval Office, he won’t be the last one. There will be a #46, a #47 and so forth.
While he will always be remembered as #45, history will remember him in other ways – like only the third president to be impeached by the House of Representatives.
And, as his presidency goes until at least January 20, 2021 (I’ll turn 51 that day, BTW,) there is still a lot of time for him to give “history” more to use to both remember him and to judge him.
Even though POTUS#45 has a place in the chronology and history, there are other ways of ranking:
I’m not going to describe or analyze the methodology of this survey as you can read all about it here.
And besides POTUS#45’s ranking in this particularly survey, which is based on opinion, here’s a factual look at just how different this current president is than his most recent peers.
I couldn’t screen shot the label for each column. FYI, they are “Previous 1,” “Previous 2,3,4” and “Occupation”
One of these POTUS’es is not like the other. Hint: It’s the one with all of the —-, —-,——,——-
And he’s the only one out of the 43 other men who’s “occupation” was a “reality television personality”
Lastly, here’s one more sorting of U.S. Presidents where POTUS#45 may well (hopefully) be listed in “history”
Yes, these are the POTUS’es who served one term or less.
And in case you’re wondering, Wednesday, January 20, 2021 is 207 days from now.