Samantha L. New York

Some Ugly Americans

The issues that really matter in the 2016 presidential election.

To the 45th President of the United States of America,

The issues of relevance are not the ones you and your opponent have developed so called “plans” to solve, but rather the ones you have created. The exhaustive list goes on and on. It is widely understood that there are problems straining America, internal and external. What most don’t recognize is that both have been worsened by the 2016 Presidential Race. How ironic is it that the people we have been given the choice between, have made their own job harder? You’ve been so focused on winning that you don’t realize the collateral damage, nor do you understand that our country is not a game. You’re treating the American people like puppets, pulling strings to make them walk in your direction. You need to look up from the stage and see a different view. The view of the audience you may not expect to be watching.

Taxes, climate change, immigration reform, terrorism. Both you and your opponent seem to have thought up the most extreme ways to fix these so called issues, when in reality they are just being made more and more elaborate by these solutions. Trump believes the best way to go about immigration reform regarding illegal immigration from Mexico is to deport all undocumented “Americans” and build a wall. This is obviously not popular among the 11 million illegal immigrants, 8 million of which are Hispanic, living in the United States since 2012, according to the Center for Migration Studies. According to the Tax Foundation, Hillary wants to add a 4% surtax on filers with income over $5 million. She has created a system in where if you make more you lose more, and if you make less, you lose less. This is obviously widely unpopular among Americans that are more well off.

Trump speaks with vulgarity about the powerful terrorist group ISIS. He antagonizes their terror when he suggests the best way to deal with them is to drop a nuclear bomb. As much as we’d like to think this year’s election has gone unnoticed by other countries as it is an embarrassment to modern politics, many nations have a vested interest in the future of our government. And so as much as you preach that America is the only country of importance, there are groups like ISIS and other people, organizations, and nations that are happy to find new reasons to look down on the United States of America. This election has given them plenty of fuel for their fire.

No, we cannot change the outcome of the election from being Trump or Hillary. But we can change the issue. Don’t win the election. Let the election and its participants win you. Whoever I am speaking to, you have not yet won. You will not be a winner until you change the way this campaign impacts the history of our government. Some argue that this should be a golden age, but at the rate we’re going, the next generations are only going to be studying the disgrace of the 2016 presidential race. There is no doubt that our nation has to address the issues at hand. But people are ignoring the fact that you are both personifying the typical ugly American and using the issues to turn a blind eye on the horrendous truths.

In the second presidential debate, Trump was asked about the 2005 video that shows him bragging that he can grab women without consent to which he responded, “I'm very embarrassed by it, I hate it, but it's locker room talk. It's one of those things. I will knock the hell out of ISIS,” and made an abrupt but definitely successful move in switching the topic. Americans today are just too easily influenced. If the candidates said jump, the people jump. But why is it this way? The President is the servant of the people. If we say jump, jump you should. Isn’t America founded upon a document clearly stating there is to be consent of the governed? Why have we lost sight of what the people want out of this election? How come when time was set aside in a televised debate for the general public to ask questions, they rarely got a straight answer? Why is it that according to David Wright from CNN, you and your opponent have been viewed more unfavorably than any other candidate for either party since 1984? These are all questions that you can only answer with change. Not reform, but change.

I challenge you to change the way your audience sees you. Right now, you’re the Ugly American. You’ve neglected a mirror since the beginning of the race, and despite that fact, you’ve still made it this far. The least you could do as President of the United States is put some makeup on. Be presidential. Respect everyone, even those who pose a conflict. Listen to everyone, even those who don’t have the same ideas.Respect the people who put you in this position. Listen to the people. Thank them.


Samantha L.

Ballston Spa High School

AP 12

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