President-elect Donald Trump has some ideas about what he wants to see as President. In a new interview with the Washington Post, the would-be dictator revealed that those ideas involve expensive, fascist-regime style military parades that are commonplace in authoritarian regimes.
Even more worryingly, it appears that Donald Trump thinks that an important part of being President is to be “a cheerleader” for the nation.
“Being a great president has to do with a lot of things, but one of them is being a great cheerleader for the country. And we’re going to show the people as we build up our military, we’re going to display our military.
That military may come marching down Pennsylvania Avenue. That military may be flying over New York City and Washington, D.C., for parades. I mean, we’re going to be showing our military.”
The military parade is a hallmark of authoritarian regimes, like in Vladimir Putin’s Russia:
And by radical extremist groups like Daesh (ISIS/ISIL):
Military parades are extremely expensive displays of a nation’s military power that glorify aggression and a nation’s capacity for destruction. Putin’s 2015 WWII Victory Day military parade cost the state $3.4 million dollars; far from wanting to rein in spending, Trump appears to be working overtime to try to come up with new ways to throw taxpayer money at the military-industrial complex.
President Theodore Roosevelt once said our nation needed to “speak softly and carry a big stick.” The United States should not need to wave its stick in the face of the world; it is unbecoming of a nation that ostensibly tries to use diplomacy and negotiations to solve conflicts rather than violence. A military parade is at its heart a sign of weakness, an overcompensation on the part of an insecure leader unable to command respect from other nations by discourse or economic power – which the United States certainly can.
Trump is incapable of speaking softly, of course, and there has never been a more obviously insecure president-elect, especially when it comes to size. We are about to see our president force our nation to wear his own insecurities on our sleeves.
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Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.