In my world, every day remains an adventure. While I lived abroad, there were unique, constant challenges and weird experiences I faced as an American in a foreign country. During this time, there was an omnipresent struggle to remember the good things that came with the bad things, always working to put a positive spin on an event when things weren’t going so well.
For many of us, inside and outside of the US, in light of the election, life especially does not feel right. We find ourselves grappling with how to proceed – read, listen, communicate, debate, fight, empathize. All of the above, really. Countless thoughts, feelings, and emotions in the wake of an even more unpredictable world out there. Some of my thoughts and feelings led to my decision to read Donald Trump’s book, “Crippled America: How to Make America Great Again.” I thought that if I understood the very, more specific basis for Trump’s campaign and his actual vision, I might be able to come up with more ways to circumnavigate him and still make my community and the world safer and better.
I thought reading the book would help me understand my perceived threat. Maybe, just maybe, I would get something out of reading this sort of manifesto. Maybe there would be a few ideas. Maybe I would think, “Oh, wow. He is right about this.” Well, spoiler alert: that did NOT happen. More than anything, it was egotistical and repetitive. Two things did happen though.
A. I learned more about Trump’s proposed policies than I ever did while following his 18-month campaign. In his book, his ideas were more detailed.
B. I found a few inspiring quotes that I thought we could flip around and turn into lemonade a la Beyonce. So, in order of appearance in the book, here they are.
6 Most Inspirational Donald Trump Quotes from “Crippled America”
1. “…when you believe in something, you never quit, and if you get knocked down, you climb right back up and keep fighting until you win.”
2. “If you do things a little differently, if you say outrageous things and fight back, they love you.”
3. “Sometimes the truth hurts, but sometimes that is the only way to get better. And a lot of the viewers told me that by watching my show they learned how to be more effective in their jobs so they wouldn’t get fired.”
4. “A great leader has to be flexible, holding his ground on the major principles but finding room for compromises that can bring people together. A great leader has to be savvy at negotiations so we don’t drown every bill in pork barrel bridges to nowhere.”
5. “If you don’t begin with big dreams, you can never fulfill them.”
6. “We are at a critical turning point in our history, not only for you and me but for our children as well. America may be struggling, it may be crippled, but we can rise again. Our time has not passed, it is here, and the potential is amazing. America’s best days are still to come. Why? Because of our people. Together we can Make America Great Again.”
Trump’s words made me think that we can use them as a force for positivity and change – simply in a way different from what he might imagine. Because, as he declared in his book,
“Let’s go back to the basics, back to the America our citizens embraced, because we were recognized as the major force for progress and peace.”
I’d argue that the basics emphasize the golden rule, kindness, and the value of human rights for all. If we are crippled, it is in the poor, dehumanizing way we continue to treat one another. Let’s MAKA – make America kind again. A kinder, more empathetic, better America can help make a better world. Through caring, peacefully fighting for and standing up for others, and one random act of kindness at a time. Are you with me?