These days, a letter is making the rounds on social media that US president George Bush (senior) left to his successor, Bill Clinton. It's a human, humble letter with personal thoughts sprinkled in. Most importantly, it shows respect. In a nutshell, Bush tells his successor to expect dark and lonely hours in office, but that he's sure he's going to do a good job. I'd describe it with the German word "staatsmännisch" - it's written in the manner you'd expect from an elder statesman.
A long, long time ago, in a land far far away, politics had grace. George H.W. Bush's letter to Bill Clinton on leaving office: pic.twitter.com/bJn6ojWRS4— Saba Gul (@sabagl) October 16, 2016
What happened to the tone in US politics since then, one has to wonder? I guess it all started with - excuse the bluntness - a blowjob. While much could be said about the affair Bill Clinton had with Monika Lewinsky, I think it marks the beginning of a steep downturn in tone in political discussion. Yes, it was wrong from pretty much every point you look at it. Still, it in no way justifies the hysterical reactions. The US as a whole has always had this, from an outsider's point of view, strange fascination with anything sexual, whether it's within the law or not. But this?
Fast-forward a few years, and we've had 8 years of the first non-white president in US office - a wonder in itself, given the political climate. Yet there are still people who claim he wasn't born in the US or even believe that he's a muslim. And they demonise him at literally everything he does, even going so far as blocking government actions by refusing to accept the budget or the president's right to elect new judges for the high courts. These people have lost all political sense of mutual respect and don't realise the devastating effect this has on society as a whole, not to mention political debates on all levels.
That Donald Trump is now a candidate for becoming the next president of the USA is a result of this. The rest of the world looks at the US with horror and disbelief while he threatens to throw his opponent in jail or refuses to say that he's going to accept the outcome of the election either way. Yet half of the US citizens don't seem to find anything wrong with this.
I have no solution. To be clear, I don't think Hillary Clinton is the type of person the US needs right now. Yet when you get to choose between the two (side note: Dear USA, do you happen to see anything wrong with your bipartisan system per chance?) it shouldn't even take a split-second to make the only viable decision. Yet, at last count, Trump can still count on something like 40% of the votes. WTF, USA? Seriously.