The American Psyche and Support for Donald Trump
America is the largest ( area wise) democracy in the world.To get an idea of its size, one can compare it to India and see that it covers a land area which is 5 times the size of India. America has been a democracy since 1776, when American War of Independence took place against the British. George Washington became the first president. Over almost 240 years the basic structure of American democracy is the same and consists of both direct and indirect election process.
The American election is a two tier system, where an electoral college elects the president The electoral college consists of all the states of the union and each state is allotted a particular number of votes depending upon its population and area. Direct elections are held to determine which candidate wins a particular state. Thus a candidate will win all the electoral votes of a state in case he wins by even one vote. This in effect is in a way a flawed syatem, as it can lead to a situation where a candidate may win in the USA on a minority vote, by virtue of him having bagged the electoral votes of a particular state. In 1984 Ronald Reagon became US president on a vote of just 25% of the eligble voters
The American election is however a fairly representative election, but is a closed world as basically the entire scenario is dominated by 2 parties, namely the Republicans and Democrats. The proliferation of parties on liguistic and religious lines is not there , like in India. It is basically a two party system.
The Present election
The US will face another election as President Obama would have completed his term of 8 years. This is the maximum allowed by the US constitution. This limitation of two terms or 8 years was incorperated in the US constitution after World War II. Earlier there were no restrictions and President Roosevelt was able to get elected for 4 terms.
Obama won the election on a splintered vote. The New York Times has noted after an analysis that Obama won as he polled 95% of the vote of Hispanics, coloreds and migrants. All he needed was a minority of the white vote to sail into Parliament. The Blacks, Hispanics and other migrants constitute 27% of the US population and as such Obama won riding on their heads.
As President he was in a way divisive and many felt his loyalty to the US constitution was suspect, because of his Muslim background. His family has been Muslims for generations and he himself admitted that he had gone to a "Muslim School" while he was in Indonesia.
Obama toned down the war on terror and repeatedly emphasised that Islam was a peaceful religion. He also announced that America was no longer a Christian nation, when 90% of all Americans are Christians. Many Americasn are thus happy to see him go. I have during my visits to America been told by many Americans that the rise of Obama was an aberration and such a thing won't happen again.
The rise of the extreme right and Donald Trump
The period of Obama's presidency has led to a rise of the Muslim extremists who are what is known as Salafists( followers of hard line Islam).These groups fired with a zeal to restore the Caliphate all over the world have risen like the 9 head Hydra. During the term of Obama the ISIL and Daesh have occupied a large area in Iraq and Syrai and tried to establish their rule. The area is huge and is more than the area of France.
The leader of the ISI is Abu Baghdadi, a charismatic figure. Not many know that he was in detention in US army custody , till ordered to be released by Obama in 2009. This man considers himself as the Caliph and despite many attempts to kill him by drones and other methods has survived. He has built up an aura of invincibility and his message has tremendous appeal for Muslims. The result is that Muslims from all over the world have enlisted to join the forces under Baghdadi. The ISI also spreads fear and this is enforced by mass killings and beheadings, duly recorded and broadcast on video.
Many American workers doing humanitarian work have been caught and beheaded. Baghdadi himself captured an American grl working as a aid worker and forcibly married and impregnated her. She was killed in a drone attack. In addition his appeal which transcends boundaries has led to terror attacks all over the world. In these attacks the local Muslim population acting as a fifth column, have facilitated these acts of carnage.
The result of all this is that the American people ( a large number of them) are bewildered. They are wondering whether their life style would be disrupted by infilteration of Muslims in all walks of life. They are further not reassured by the rhetoric of President Obama, that Islam is a peaceful religion.
Acts of terrorism and being a peaceful religion do not gel together and most Americans have realised the Pan World nature of Islam and the result is that 26 governors of US states have refused to take in Muslim refugees from the Middle East.
This is the reason that the leading contender at the moment for the Republican nomination is Donald Trump. Donald Trump may or may not get the nomination, but there is no doubt that he articulates many of the fellings of the US populace. Donald Trump has minced no words and feels Muslism in the USA are a threat. He has called for all Muslism to be registered and a ban on construction of mosques. The mosque is the symbol of Islam and one can see that Saudi Arabia offered to build 1000 mosques in Europe for the Muslim refugees. In a way it acts as a divisive symbol as it is used to further the Wahabbi concept of Islam
Donald Trump is the leader at the moment among the republican candidates. He has also called for internment of suspected Muslims indulgimg or likely to indulge in activities of a prejudicial nature like Roosevelt did to the Japanese in the US during World war II. In a TV debate Trump was forthright and despite being called a fascist, has stuck to his views.
The American public at large are wary of Muslims who presently are a microscopic minority in the USA.( about2%). They fear that in case this number increase, the Muslims will disrupt the life of an average American. America is a violent society and killings by guns is endemic. But Americans feel that guns by themselves are not the danger and the real danger is a bigoted Muslim who may decide to destroy America from within.
Donald Trump represents a state of mind of the US voter and there is every chance that the next president will be one who will rein in Islamic fundamentalism and not allow Islam to flourish in America. Donald Trump may win or lose, but he has articulated the feelings of millions of Americans
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