The big scandal in the news is that Melania Trump, the same person who lied about graduating with an architecture degree from the University of Slovenia, plagiarized her speech at the Republican National Convention.
Several parts of her speech appear to have been lifted from Michelle Obama’s DNC speech in 2008, which is hilarious considering that the same Republicans who love to criticize the First Lady are now coming to Melania’s defense by applauding her copy-cat speech.
While the Trump camp has completely denied accusations of what many believe to be obvious plagiarism, the truth is that we’re all focusing on a very small component of a huge problem that we’ve all accepted as normal in American politics.
Nearly every politician plagiarizes their speeches, because nearly every politician has a speech writer do the work for them. That very behavior is at the core of plagiarism. Political speeches might represent the ideas of the politician at hand, but often times it’s not written in their own words.
Sure, the writers obviously authorize the use of the speeches because they were paid to write them. But that still doesn’t change the fact that what our politicians are saying in an effort to convince us to cast our ballots in their favor are not their words.
So are we voting for speech writers or are we voting for politicians?
In the case of Melania Trump, I don’t really know much about her political ideology or who she is as a person. Her speech at the convention was a chance for everyone to get to know her. But her time on that stage was nothing more than a missed opportunity because she was just reading from a script someone else prepared for her.
None of what she said was “her” speech. She took someone else’s work and represented it as her own as many politicians, including both Democrats and Republicans, routinely do.
Americans are tired of the platitudes and disingenuous rhetoric. What stood out, and what seemed to work quite well for candidates during this election cycle, were the moments of off-the-cuff speech.
As much as I dislike Trump, I have to admit that his campaign took off because he seemed real and unscripted to a lot of voters. He wasn’t rehearsed, senatorial, or buttoned up. That resonated with people who are distrustful of today’s politicians.
The same went for Bernie Sanders, who obviously had a completely different platform and political ideology from Trump’s. Young people overwhelmingly supported Bernie because he wasn’t the standard politician. He let his hands flail around as he passionately spoke about the issues that sincerely matter to him. He was real.
So yes, Melania’s speech did sound a lot like Michelle Obama’s at times. But when considering the grand scheme of things, none of those words were her own, and that’s the real problem.
Donald Trump is citing his score on a routine cognitive test as proof he can solve the North Korea crisis better than Obama
In an interview with Reuters on Wednesday, Donald Trump brought up his score on the Montreal Cognitive Assessment as proof he is mentally capable of solving the escalating North Korea crisis.
According to Reuters, Trump blamed the tensions on the actions of his predecessors, Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, and said prior administrations “all realized they were going to have to leave it to a president that scored the highest on tests.”
Right-wing preacher justifies Trump’s Access Hollywood tape as God’s work
How do the same evangelicals who incessantly force-feed us their morals and family values manage to overwhelmingly support someone like Donald Trump? Especially when he gets caught on tape discussing how he moves in on women "like a bitch" and how he enjoys the occasional spontaneous pussy grab.
How exactly did white evangelicals reconcile Trump’s inability to resist desires of the flesh to the point where 80 percent voted for him?
Trump reverses protections for Americans with crippling student loan debt
One of the biggest obstacles to a healthy U.S. economy continues to be student loan debt, which an increasing number of people are defaulting on. Millions of people had not made a payment on $137 billion in federal student loans for at least nine months in 2016. That’s a 14 percent increase in defaults from the previous year.
So what was Trump’s response to the the already grotesque $1.2 trillion problem? He threw out what little protection borrowers had against shady debt collectors.
Around 8 million people are currently defaulting on their student loan debt. Just under half of those people took out loans through the discontinued Federal Family Education Loan Program. The program insured and subsidized loans from private lenders.