This was a beautiful speech tonight by President Donald J. Trump. It wasn’t perfect, but it was a compassionate speech from beginning to end. It was the total opposite of everything the mainstream media says President Trump represents. If you did not watch it, you should take the time to see it for yourself. Do not believe the pundits. They have lied to us. Blatantly so.
They twist and turn the words and attribute malicious intent where there is none. They are on the hunt for “factchecks” and constantly present him in the worst light possible. We must resist these manipulations. Listen to President Trump. Listen to this speech and judge for yourself.
LIVE now: President Trump’s second State of the Union Address https://t.co/K4ytXhQmIX
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) February 6, 2019
From the very beginning of the speech, he celebrated the 75th year of the Allied liberation of Europe in World War II. “On D-day, June 6, 1944, 15,000 young American men jumped from the skies, and 60,000 more stormed in from the sea to save our civilization from tyranny,” he said as he presented Private First-Class Joseph Riley, Staff Sergeant Erving Walker, and Sergeant Hartman Zeitcheck. “Gentlemen, we salute you,” he said, and America saluted with him. He also saluted Buzz Aldrin, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the planting of the American flag on the moon. Another kind gesture, celebrating the best of America.
When he celebrated the great economic numbers, his focus was on those he is always being pinged against. He spoke compassionately:
Nearly 5 million Americans have been lifted off food stamps … Unemployment has reached the lowest rate in over half a century. African-American, Hispanic-American, and Asian-American unemployment have all reached their lowest levels ever recorded. Unemployment for Americans with disabilities has also reached an all-time low. More people are working now than at any time in the history of our country.
When he spoke about judicial nominations, he spoke with a unifying tone: “We must be united at home to defeat our adversaries abroad. This new era of cooperation can start with finally confirming the more than 300 highly qualified nominees who are still stuck in the Senate, in some cases years and years waiting …” And, again, he showed compassion for the nominees as individuals with families pointing out the unfairness of what the process has become.
He then went deeper:
In the last Congress, both parties came together to pass unprecedented legislation to confront the opioid crisis, a sweeping new farm bill, historic V.A. Reforms, and after four decades of rejection, we passed a V.A. Accountability, so we can finally terminate those who mistreat our wonderful veterans. And just weeks ago, all parties united for groundbreaking criminal justice reform.
President Donald J. Trump has led on all these issues. What do you think would have been said of President Barack Obama if these historic efforts had happened under his watch? This is a decidedly compassionate president, and Americans are not being allowed to see this side of President Trump. It is time we wake up and allow the true man –the full man, warts and all, but with this compassionate side, too—instead of this malicious caricature we are constantly fed.
President Trump was visibly moved as he spoke of Alice Johnson and Matthew Charles who were helped by the criminal justice reforms. Alice had become a minister in prison and has dedicated her life to helping others choose a better path. Matthew became a law clerk. These are stories of redemption and grace and compassion.
He spoke with compassion (as he has done in the past, I should note) about illegal immigration. Again, if we just take a moment to listen to the president and stop listening to the predators living off of his every tweet, it is almost shocking to see. He said, “I want people to come into our country in the largest numbers ever, but they have to come in legally.” Will that make the headlines tomorrow?
The president added:
Tolerance for illegal immigration is not compassionate, it is actually very cruel. One in three women is sexually assaulted on the long journey north. Smugglers use migrant children as human pawns to exploit our laws and gain access to our country. Human traffickers and sex traffickers take advantage of the wide-open areas between our ports of entry to smuggle thousands of young girls and women into the United States and to sell them into prostitution and modern-day slavery. Tens of thousands of innocent Americans are killed by lethal drugs that cross our border and flood into our cities, including meth, heroin, cocaine, and fentanyl. The savage gang MS-13 now operates in at least 20 different American states, and they almost all come through our southern border. Just yesterday, an MS-13 gang member was taken into custody for a fatal shooting on a subway platform in New York city.
Friends, none of this is racist. I say that as a Hispanic myself. The president speaks with a compassionate tone. And perhaps he doesn’t always, but the rush to paint him as the next Hitler is simply grotesque, and Americans of all political persuasions should reject that type of character assassination. At some point, we must demand that our lawmakers engage the president on the struggle to come up with innovative ideas to address America’s problems. He puts forth a compelling, compassionate case, and to simply make fun of him in general simply should not cut it.
But the most powerful part of the speech came when he addressed the sanctity of human life. He first spoke about his support for paid family leave, “I am also proud to be the first president to include in my budget a plan for nationwide paid family leave — so that every new parent has the chance to bond with their newborn child.” And then contrasted that parent-child bond with the atrocious late-term abortion laws we have seen in several states like New York and Virginia. His next words were:
There could be no greater contrast to the beautiful image of a mother holding her infant child than the chilling displays our nation saw in recent days. Lawmakers in New York cheered with delight upon the passage of legislation that would allow a baby to be ripped from the mother’s womb moments before birth. These are living, feeling, beautiful babies who will never get the chance to share their love and dreams with the world. And then, we had the case of the governor of Virginia where he stated he would execute a baby after birth. To defend the dignity of every person, I am asking the Congress to pass legislation to prohibit the late-term abortion of children who can feel pain in the mother’s womb. Let us work together to build a culture that cherishes innocent life. And let us reaffirm a fundamental truth — all children — born and unborn — are made in the holy image of God.
This was a historic moment for the fight to stand for those who cannot speak for themselves, unborn babies. We must give thanks to God for a president willing to stand in the gap, when so many have wavered because of political considerations, and speak truth. He should be celebrated for his courageous stance for life.
He spoke compassionately about the people of Venezuela: “We stand with the Venezuelan people in their noble quest for freedom — and we condemn the brutality of the Maduro regime, whose socialist policies have turned that nation from being the wealthiest in South America into a state of abject poverty and despair.”
President Trump had strong words against the socialist policies that continue to creep into our country. He said, “Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country. America was founded on liberty and independence – not government coercion, domination, and control. We are born free, and we will stay free.”
I was glad to remind my twitter followers that by standing against socialism, we stand in favor of religious liberty. History bears witness to the abuses against the church and the freedom of all peoples to worship God as they see fit, under socialist regimes. That is one reason why President Trump showed his compassion for the American people as he said, “Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country.”
There was much more. He spoke of health care and fighting AIDS and cancer, again using powerful examples of the lives for which he is fighting.
He finished with these powerful words, invoking our motto (still), “In God We Trust”:
This is the time to rekindle the bonds of love and loyalty and memory that link us together as citizens, as neighbors, as patriots. This is our future — our fate — and our choice to make. I am asking you to choose greatness. No matter the trials we face, no matter the challenges to come, we must go forward together. We must keep America first in our hearts. We must keep freedom alive in our souls. And we must always keep faith in America’s destiny — that one nation, under God, must be the hope and the promise and the light and the glory among all the nations of the world! Thank you. God bless you, God bless America.
So, I will forever remember this State of the Union Address as the compassionate one. I’ll tell my children and my children’s children that it was delivered in 2019 by President Donald J. Trump. I’ll tell them I count myself privileged to have watched it.
Mario Diaz, Esq. is CWA’s general counsel. Follow him on Twitter @mariodiazesq.