The Corner

Trump: America First

On the whole, that was a solid Inaugural Address by Trump (which he supposedly wrote himself) – not a great speech, not a highly concrete speech (inaugurals are thematic, not programmatic), but a speech that adequately set forth the themes and philosophy that made Trump popular with his loyal supporters. Naturally, he had to close with “Make America Great Again.” I also felt as if his narration of our aspirations in space, medicine and other frontiers deliberately echoed the cadence of the opening narration from Star Trek, but maybe that’s just me.

I suspect the part everyone will remember is his invocation of “America First,” repeatedly and as a theme of his foreign and domestic policy and even as a theme of his calls for unity: ”When you open your heart to patriotism, there is no room for prejudice.” The implication here is that America is a family: outsiders viewed with suspicion, but everyone within treated with love and respect. Obviously, we’re a long way from the latter goal, and Trump has hardly been innocent of exacerbating that, but it’s at least a worthy aspiration.

Dan McLaughlin is an attorney practicing securities and commercial litigation in New York City, and a contributing columnist at National Review Online.

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