Click here for COVID-19 updates affecting the campus community

Trump boasts 'America first' mindset in inaugural address

WASHINGTON — A sea of red “Make America Great Again” hats filled Capitol Hill as supporters of Donald Trump, the 45th President of the United States of America, was sworn into office at 11:30 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 20.

“We are not merely transferring power from one administration to another or from one party to another,” Trump said during his inaugural address. “But we are transferring power from Washington D.C. and giving it back to you, the people.”

The theme of Trump’s remarks was a restoration of power to American citizens. He also pointed to what he views as flaws in the federal government. The billionaire businessman said that, for decades, the U.S. has “enriched foreign industry at the expense of American industry, subsidized armies of other countries, while allowing for the very sad depletion of our military.”

The answer, Trump concluded, will be to always put American interests at the forefront of his policies as commander in chief.

“From this day forward, a new vision will govern our land,” he said. “From this day forward, it’s going to be only America first, America first.”

Those policies include new decisions on trade, taxes, immigration and foreign affairs. The speech garnered excited cheers and chants from his crimson-capped supporters, even though turnout paled in comparison to previous inaugurations, according to visitors who have attended in the past.

PolitiFact reported Friday that the National Parks Service no longer produces estimates of events on the National Mall. The department stopped estimating National Mall turnout after a dispute over attendance numbers during the 1995 Million Man March.

Speaking directly to his most devout followers, Trump promised to clear boarders and bring back jobs, wealth and dreams to all U.S. citizens.

“We will follow two simple rules: buy American and hire American,” he said.

Trump’s views on expanding the military is one of the reasons Douglas Lengenfelder, the Veterans Coordinator of Pennsylvania’s Republican Party, supported the president during the general election.

“Nobody ever went to war because a nation was too strong,” said Lengenfelder, standing in Union Square as he waited for Trump to speak.

Lengenfelder said the new president’s policy to improve veteran benefits was viewed favorably by his peers — as opposed to Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton’s plan.

During his address, Trump’s supporters booed Clinton, Sen. Bernie Sanders, the family of former President Barack Obama and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

Still, in between oscillating boos and applause, Trump spoke about the idea of patriotism as a unifying force for the American people.

“It’s time to remember that old wisdom our soldiers will never forget, that whether we’re black or brown or white, we all bleed the same red blood of patriots,” Trump said.

Groups of protesters throughout the city begged to differ. Most who attended, however, were with President Trump, according to Central Michigan University alumnus Dan Kuhn. The retired Saginaw police officer said he supports Trump because of “the way he relates to Americans and supports cops.”

Kuhn explained Trump’s support of police is best displayed in his dismissal of the Black Lives Matter movement, which Kuhn said stands in opposition to law enforcement.

“We’re just not a valued profession anymore,” he said.

Trump’s admiration of police work is why Kuhn said he belongs to the only police labor union in Michigan that endorsed the president during his campaign.

For George Washington University student Isobel Walker, 19, the atmosphere at the inauguration was a stark contrast to the climate on her campus.

“It’s definitely strange because I feel like on campus, the majority of students do not support Trump,” she said.

Walker added that even though she voted for Clinton in the election, she came to the inauguration today because it was nearby. She also wanted to experience the historic event.

Walker’s friend Abigail Fusco, 20, said the swearing in of Trump was gratifying. The Trump supporter cast her first vote for a long-shot candidate who resonated with the American people and won the highest office in the country.

“I think it’s cool being able to vote and the person I voted for ended up winning,” Fusco said.


About Kate Carlson

Editor-in-Chief Kate Carlson is a senior from Lapeer who is majoring in journalism with a minor in ...

View Posts by Kate Carlson →