Tuesday, February 21, 2017

My Article re Trump Visit for today's Guardian.

Wrote an article at an hour's notice for the Guardian yesterday. Don't know whether it reached print. It's not the daily paper I normally read. The article is a summery of my last post about the President of the United States. Anyway, this is what I wrote;

"I support the impending state visit of Donald Trump to the United Kingdom. He has been elected to the position of President by the voters of the United States in a free and fair election. President Trump now leads a country which has long been a dependable partner and ally of Britain. It's crucial for our security and economic interest that this 'special relationship' with the United States continues into the future.

I accept that President Trump has made comments both before and after his election that I, and many other British people, find unacceptable. I accept he has sought to implement policies I consider objectionable. I find his style, his language and his denigration of the media to not be what I'd expect of a world leader. But he is doing pretty much what he said he was going to do in his election campaign, and he won. He was elected. If we are to respect democracy as a principle, we accept it when we do not much care for the result.

During the reign of Her Majesty our Queen,  over 100 state visits have been granted to a wide variety of national leaders, many of whom have been strangers to the idea of democracy. Many have been controversial. I have always thought it good politics to try to promote better government across the world by engaging with leaders, who have traits we disagree with.

Britain's Prime Minister has a difficult and sensitive path to tread. Central to her thinking must always be the national interest. She may well express disapproval and disagreement to President Trump, but in public she will be constructive and welcoming. This is the right approach. The State Visit must go ahead as planned.

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