The Only Reason I'm Hopeful About The Trump Administration

The Only Reason I'm Hopeful About The Trump Administration

Trump's reaction to this major break in US foreign policy makes his impending presidency more promising
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I feel obligated to preface this by stating outright that I am not a Trump supporter. I think his misogynistic, racist, close-minded (to say the least) comments are absolutely wrong, and I don’t think he has enough (or any) political experience to be successful in the White House. That I feel I must say this is a bit of a shame, but in today’s world, I know that anything can be misconstrued.

After Trump was elected, I was extremely concerned about many things, including his stance on Israel. He’s said so many things but then done so many other, often conflicting things, making it incredibly difficult to know where he really stands on a lot of political issues. But the events of Friday, December 23 have reassured me that there is some hope with the transition from Obama’s administration to Trump's.

On Friday, a resolution concerning Israel was quickly brought to a vote in the United Nations Security Council. It condemns Israeli settlements, thereby giving credence to Palestinian leadership, which, as noted in an AIPAC press release, “has refused to return to talks with Israel and has continued to incite violence.” In the hour prior to the vote, I, along with some of my pro-Israel friends and many others, sent emails to Obama through AIPAC, urging him to concur with Congress’s oppositional sentiment towards the resolution and use the US veto. Abhorred after hearing that Obama abstained, I couldn’t believe that the US (well, Obama) had failed to oppose a strongly biased resolution (against Israel), the one-sidedness being something that the UN itself should not be condoning. Yet this is the organization that last March named Israel as the world’s top human rights violator and condemned it “five times more than any other of the 192 UN member states,” so I know I shouldn’t be surprised by the UN. That 14 nations on the Security Council voted in favor of the resolution (and thus, against Israel) is upsetting enough. But Obama’s abstention, a break from standard US policy of vetoing one-sided, anti-Israel resolutions is a much greater blow.

I truly do not think that this resolution will affect the way that the Israeli government deals with settlements. Prime Minister Netanyahu is firm in his belief of the right of Israelis to build these settlements, and he is convinced that Obama made a mistake in betraying the friendship that the US has built and maintained with Israel.

Furthermore, as US Ambassador Samantha Power (the person who voted on behalf of Obama in the Security Council on Friday) said, “The resolution is too narrowly focused on settlements when we all know, or all should know” that the conflict between Israel and Palestine lies beyond settlements. I agree with this statement completely, and therefore do not understand why Obama (and therefore Power) chose to abstain rather than veto. If the resolution was inadequate, which even Power herself conceded, then it shouldn’t have been allowed to pass.

I recognize the layers of complexity in the Middle East situation today, and I understand that settlements are merely a physical representation of the deeply entrenched territorial and principle-related conflicts in the Middle East and the pain felt on all sides of the situation. But if the US isn’t standing by Israel and helping it work with its neighbors to create lasting peace, then which nation will? US support of Israel is integral in preserving democracy in the Middle East and in preserving Israel itself. Obama’s action, so near to the end of his presidency, certainly put a strain on an already tenuous relationship.

From local synagogues to politicians, people are not letting Obama’s poor decision be ignored. Ted Cruz tweeted that the US should cut funding to the UN until this resolution is reversed, and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R) agreed.

However, what made me feel the most excited and validated in my beliefs was, surprisingly a tweet from our president elect. In the tweet, Trump promised that things would be different in January once he takes office, and I truly want to believe him.

While I know that some changes will be good and others bad, the fact that Trump recognizes the need for the US to be a strong ally to Israel and sees that Obama and the UN made a mistake on this issue is extremely promising. Furthermore, his belief aligns with the general sentiment of Congress towards this issue, suggesting that perhaps he and Congress will agree on further issues and create beneficial change once he takes office.

I really hope Trump sticks to his word on this one. Because I care so, so much about Israel and I know that there’re many other people who feel the same way. Israel isn’t just another country to me; it’s a home, and it deserves fair treatment by the international community, by the UN, and especially by America, it’s greatest ally.


Trump, I am hopeful. Please don’t let me down.
Cover Image Credit: @realDonaldTrump

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To The Friends I Won't Talk To After High School

I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.
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Hey,

So, for the last four years I’ve seen you almost everyday. I’ve learned about your annoying little brother, your dogs and your crazy weekend stories. I’ve seen you rock the awful freshman year fashion, date, attend homecoming, study for AP tests, and get accepted into college.

Thank you for asking me about my day, filling me in on your boy drama and giving me the World History homework. Thank you for complimenting my outfits, laughing at me presenting in class and listening to me complain about my parents. Thank you for sending me your Quizlets and being excited for my accomplishments- every single one of them. I appreciate it all because I know that soon I won’t really see you again. And that makes me sad. I’ll no longer see your face every Monday morning, wave hello to you in the hallways or eat lunch with you ever again. We won't live in the same city and sooner or later you might even forget my name.

We didn’t hang out after school but none the less you impacted me in a huge way. You supported my passions, stood up for me and made me laugh. You gave me advice on life the way you saw it and you didn’t have to but you did. I think maybe in just the smallest way, you influenced me. You made me believe that there’s lots of good people in this world that are nice just because they can be. You were real with me and that's all I can really ask for. We were never in the same friend group or got together on the weekends but you were still a good friend to me. You saw me grow up before your eyes and watched me walk into class late with Starbucks every day. I think people like you don’t get enough credit because I might not talk to you after high school but you are still so important to me. So thanks.

With that said, I truly hope that our paths cross one day in the future. You can tell me about how your brothers doing or how you regret the college you picked. Or maybe one day I’ll see you in the grocery store with a ring on your finger and I’ll be so happy you finally got what you deserved so many guys ago.

And if we ever do cross paths, I sincerely hope you became everything you wanted to be. I hope you traveled to Italy, got your dream job and found the love of your life. I hope you have beautiful children and a fluffy dog named Charlie. I hope you found success in love before wealth and I hope you depended on yourself for happiness before anything else. I hope you visited your mom in college and I hope you hugged your little sister every chance you got. She’s in high school now and you always tell her how that was the time of your life. I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.

And hey, maybe I’ll see you at the reunion and maybe just maybe you’ll remember my face. If so, I’d like to catch up, coffee?

Sincerely,

Me

Cover Image Credit: High school Musical

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A Little Skepticism Goes A Long Way

Be informed citizens and verify what you see and hear.

rahma
rahma
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These days more than ever before we are being bombarded constantly by a lot of news and information, a considerable amount of which is inaccurate. Sometimes there's an agenda behind it to mislead people and other times its just rumors or distortion of the facts. So, how do you sift through all this and get accurate information? How can you avoid being misled or brainwashed?

This is an important topic because the decisions each of us make can affect others. And if you are a responsible citizen your decisions can affect large numbers of people, hopefully positively, but negatively as well.

It's been said that common sense is not something that can be taught, but I am going to disagree. I think with the right training, teaching the fundamentals behind common sense can get people to have a better sense of what it is and start practicing it. All you will need is to improve your general knowledge and gain some experience, college is a good place for that, then add a little skepticism and you are on your way to start making sensible decisions.

One of the fundamental things to remember is not to believe a statement at face value, you must first verify. Even if you believe it's from a trusted source, they may have gotten their info from a questionable one. There's a saying that journalists like to use: "if your mother said, 'I love you' you should verify it.'" While this is taking it a bit too far, you get the idea.

If you feel that something is not adding up, or doesn't make sense then you are probably right. This is all the more reason to check something out further. In the past, if someone showed a picture or video of something that was sufficient proof. But nowadays with so many videos and picture editing software, it would have to go through more verification to prove its authenticity. That's not the case with everything but that's something that often needs to be done.

One way of checking if something sounds fishy is to look at all the parties involved and what do they have to gain and lose. This sometimes is easier to use when you're dealing with a politics-related issue, but it can work for other things where more than one person/group is involved. For example, most people and countries as well will not do something that is self-destructive, so if one party is accusing the other of doing something self-destructive or disadvantageous then it's likely that there is something inaccurate about the account. Perhaps the accusing party is setting the other one up or trying to gain some praise they don't deserve.

A lot of times all it takes is a little skepticism and some digging to get to the truth. So please don't be that one which retweets rumors or helps spread misinformation. Verify before you report it.

rahma
rahma

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