Lee students and faculty reflect on President Trump’s first 100 days
President Donald Trump has recently passed his first 100 days in office, but not without controversy.
As his first term is already proving to be a memorable one, the new president has seldom left the headlines, the minds of the American people or the students and faculty at Lee University .
Anthropology professor Alan Wheeler regards Trump with a mix of apprehension and intrigue.
“The thing about Trump is that he does do something quite interesting because he keeps saying that he’s going to bring back law and order,” Wheeler said. “What kind of law and order is he talking about? The law and order that says we can disregard international law and invade Afghanistan without approval from the United Nations?”
Despite this criticism, Wheeler remains contemplative about Trump’s future four years.
“I do believe many of his supporters are disenchanted with him,” Wheeler said. “Even though there have been people who are disappointed with him for not coming through with all his bazillion promises, because he did try, I think people are saying, ‘Let’s just wait and see.’”
When asked about his outlook on the next four years under Trump, Wheeler was quick to say that God is his ultimate leader.
“I think citizenship is with [God’s] kingdom first,” Wheeler said. “My commander-in-chief is not a president. I’ve always thought that.”
Wheeler is not alone in his apprehension. According to the ABC News/Washington Post poll released Sunday, Trump’s approval ratings are the lowest of any post–1945 president after 100 days.
Despite a startling 42% approval rating, the poll indicates that his core base is staying strong. 96% of those who voted for him in November said they would do so again.
Some are even a little optimistic about Trump’s presidency. Brian Ericson, a sophomore English student, believes Trump could have successful term.
“I hope to see a lot of maturing happening very quickly in terms of his thin skin and Twitter use, just from a professional standpoint,” Ericson said. “I hope it will even out into a more rational administration by using its unique advantages.”
Ericson is not, however, jumping to any happy conclusions.
“I am concerned with his more populist and, dare I say, xenophobic policies such as the refugee ban that I believe are not directions the country needs to be headed into.” Ericson said.
Some still take a more non-partial approach. According to a recent CBS News article, Trump has not been more or less successful in his first 100 days as his predecessors.
The CBS News article claims political history experts find that, while he has had a turbulent term thus far, not much has changed politically since Trump took office. A surge of executive orders, low approval ratings and a constant battle with the media are Trump’s biggest conflicts, according to the article.
Steven Hamlin, a chemistry student who plans to return to Lee in the fall, also sees the good and the bad in Trump’s presidency.
“I expected him to break a lot of promises he made, but I did not expect him to break them the way he did,” Hamlin said. “For example, I did not expect him to mention the wall he talked about after he got elected, but he did.”
Hamlin worries that Trump will continue to be unreliable in the years to come but remains neutral.
“I certainly don’t think he is the best president our country has ever had, but I don’t think he’s the worst one we’ve ever had either, not yet anyway,” Hamlin said. “We still have at least four more years of him, so just about anything could happen.”
President Trump’s first term is far from over, and time will tell what his legacy will be.