From the Left



Trump focuses on nonexistent problems, worsens actual problems

By Robert B. Reich, Tribune Content Agency on

It's easy to get caught up in the deeply flawed character of Donald Trump. We also need to recognize the policy catastrophe of his presidency.

Compare the trumped-up problems he's been focusing on with the real problems facing this country. Last week, for example, Trump ordered an end to the Obama-era executive action that shielded around 800,000 young undocumented immigrants -- often called "Dreamers" -- from deportation under what's been known as the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA.

For what reason? There's zero evidence Dreamers are taking jobs away from native-born Americans. In fact, evidence points in the opposite direction: They've been generating economic activity that's created more jobs.

Trump's other recent policy decisions reveal the same pattern -- alleging that some group is part of a problem that doesn't really exist.

A few weeks ago, he gave the Defense Department authority to expel transgender people from the military and barred the Pentagon from recruiting transgender troops.

Why was this necessary? Transgender people have bravely served this country.

Last week, the Trump administration announced that for an upcoming Supreme Court case, it's siding with a baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a gay couple because he said his religious beliefs don't allow it.

Why side with this baker? This isn't a case of religious freedom. The baker wouldn't be allowed to deny services to an African-American or Jewish couple if he said his religious beliefs prohibited him from serving them.

Last week, the Trump administration also announced that it's weakening the standard for responding to sexual assault cases at universities.

Why? The administration says too many young men have been denied due process. But there's no evidence of this. In fact, the standard established by the Obama administration has been working quite well.


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