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Editorial: Wake up and pay attention America

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U.S. President Donald Trump, right, listens as Senator Dick Durbin, D-Ill., speaks while meeting with bipartisan members of Congress on immigration in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018. (Andrew Harrer/Abaca Press/TNS)

The New York Times released an anonymous op-ed on Sept. 5 written by a senior official in the Trump administration, titled “I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration,” where they outlined what is going on inside the White House behind closed doors.

The op-ed piece details the president’s erratic behavior that many suspected was causing problems for his senior staff, but there has been no public confirmation of this until now. The writer accuses the president of having no morals and called his impulses “anti-democratic.” The piece goes on to describe the president’s leadership style as “impetuous, adversarial, petty and ineffective.” Those are harsh words to describe the leader of the free world but are they the wrong words?

After reading the piece in the Times, our staff contemplated what it means not only for the president and his administration but what it means to us as citizens of the country he is burdened with running. Are we surprised the president acts like a child and his aids babysitters? The piece was eye-opening in some ways and gave us a glimpse of what some administrators in the White House are doing to keep the peace or at least preserve some dignity on behalf of our nation. These are staffers often subjected to public criticism when in reality we should thank them for their seemingly tireless work in trying to keep our country from total ruin.

Our nation today is more divided than it ever has been and, in part, it is because we have a president who is quick to criticize, demoralize and dismiss. We’ve seen this in the news and his Twitter feed over and over again.

On Thursday, our staff reached out to several students on campus to gauge their reaction on the piece. Our findings were a little unnerving, yet not exactly surprising.

Most of those who were interviewed on campus hadn’t heard about or read the op-ed piece in The Times and many of the reactions were indifferent, for the most part. That’s a problem.

While it’s safe to say that most of us are feeling bogged down by all of the bad, outrageous and  sometimes unbelievable news that comes out of the White House day after day, it doesn’t give us a free pass turn a blind eye to these issues.

Our current president has a job to do and, according to a Washington Post poll released on Sept. 5 about his approval ratings, Americans aren’t that approving of his antics in the White House. With a 60 percent disapproval rating among registered voters, something has to give with this presidency.

As college students, we may not always be thinking about Washington and who the president attacked on Twitter recently. That’s understandable. But we do need to be aware of who is sitting in the Oval Office making decisions on our behalf. Did you know the president has signed 28 executive orders so far this year? Some of them relate to family separation, the environment, foreign policy, retirement, and more.

We need to heighten our senses at least a little bit to know what is going on in our nation and what our appointed leaders are up to because in the end, they’ll eventually leave their positions, but we’ll be the ones paying the price long after their departure.

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