I have recently seen people express the that the problems of modern America can be directly traced back to Donald Trump’s presidency. The solution, in this view, is simply to elect a different politician to the presidency so that they can restore “civility.”

This view is, in my opinion, dangerously shortsighted, and ignores the injustices baked into the American system. Philando Castile, Eric Garner, and Michael Brown were all murdered by police under Obama. America invaded Iraq on fabricated grounds under the younger Bush. The largest expansion of American law enforcement powers and funding in recent history was signed into law by Clinton.

Trump is a symptom of a diseased system, not the cause. The problem will not be solved simply by replacing a politician, by empty statements or token reforms. Systemic change — like the demands of S.B. Black Lives Matter or calls to defund the police — is necessary.


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