The 2016 American presidential election has resulted in the selection of two privileged men to take over the offices of President and Vice President. During the election campaign Donald J. Trump presented–without irony–himself, a white (under the spray-tan), 70-year old man born to wealth and privilege, and his career politician running-mate, as the best alternative to the corruption of traditional political elites. The President-elect has long demonstrated, among other things, a predatory nature, inconsistent values, disdain for facts, murky morals, and an absence of principle. His rare attempts at decorum, like his acceptance speech, should not to be mistaken for gravitas or depth of character.
His small hands will not be the only ones holding the reins of power because, like those who have occupied the Oval Office before him, the current President-elect will retain a group of advisers. That group will include the Vice-President-elect Mike Pence, the former six-term Congressman and Governor of Indiana.
In contrast to the President-elect’s moral ambiguity, and despite the Constitutional separation of Church and State, Pence claims that his political principles are shaped by his particular brand of evangelical Christianity, which seems to have little room for humility, love, acceptance or compassion. While the Governor of Indiana, many of his anti-labour, anti-choice, anti-LGBTQ, and economic austerity measures were so severe that they caused alarm within his own party.
While “The Donald” is busy “making America great again” (whatever that means) Vice-President Pence could very well end up being in charge of domestic and foreign policy, making him the de facto President of the United States of America. The President-elect has proven that he is a bully by nature, but it may be that he will prove to be less of a threat to progress in the United States — and the safety of the planet — than the people who surround him.