A presidency with an explosive start

Trump fires Obama’s legacy to start anew


Lucas Koprowski, Editor-In-Chief

Donald Trump began his presidency with an explosive plethora of executive orders that encompass many of his campaign promises. From the pipelines to immigration, his decisions leave many of us on the editorial board blown away. It became blaringly obvious that his convictions are polarizing after his removal of key pages on the White House website, from LGBTQIA rights and civil rights to climatology.

Even though a majority of his decisions are hard to swallow, even with a grain of salt, he has been keeping his word in an attempt to attain his vision of law and order in the United States, which is somewhat virtuous. His blatant disrespect of climate science, however, is far from virtuous.

Over the past two weeks, his executive orders have started fulfilling his promise of dismantling Barack Obama’s legacy, and his swiftness was more than unexpected by both Democrats and establishment Republicans. Two of the most obvious and most disheartening decisions he made are the two executive orders giving green lights to both the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Keystone XL pipeline.

For those who’ve been living under a rock, these two pipelines have been the largest domestic environmental battle of the past year. These pipelines are designed to transport local crude oil across multiple states through pipelines in large amounts to reduce dependence on foreign oils from the other side of the globe.

However, these pipelines, even when built with precision and care, can break and spill crude oil into its surroundings. Just at the end of last year, a pipeline in North Dakota, not connected to the Dakota Access line, spilled an estimated 4,200 barrels of oil and contaminated 5.4 miles of a creek used by wild animals as their water source. The current theory from the owners of this pipeline, True Oil LLC, as to what caused this was a landslide.

This specific pipeline is only 6-inches in diameter, compared to the 30-inch diameter of the proposed Dakota Access Pipeline. The fourth phase of the Keystone pipeline Trump approved, the Keystone XL, is proposed to be 36-inches in diameter. A crack in either of these pipelines would cause an environmental disaster magnitudes worse than the aforementioned True Oil pipeline spill. If anything similar to that spill happens with either pipeline, the ecological destruction of American soil will be an ominous legacy to leave behind.

OK, environmental policy isn’t his strong suit. That was to be expected coming from a successful multi-billionaire businessman. His campaign was focused on the prosperity of the American people through economic development, as well supporting police to enforce law and order.

But what does Trump mean by enforcing law and order? Of course, he could be talking about enforcing laws that the Obama administration turned a blind eye to, such as legalized marijuana in multiple states. It could mean attempting mass deportation of undocumented immigrants across mainland America, especially with DARPA within his grasp.

In a tweet, he decided to make Chicago his first directive of where his law and order campaign will begin. On Jan. 24, he stated, “If Chicago doesn’t fix the horrible “carnage” going on, 228 shootings in 2017 with 42 killings (up 24% from 2016), I will send in the Feds!”

In response to Trump’s statement, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s spokesman Adam Collins stated, “As the president-elect knows from his conversation with the mayor, we agree the federal government has a strong role to play in public safety by funding summer jobs and prevention programming for at-risk youth, by holding the criminals who break our gun laws accountable for their crimes, by passing meaningful gun laws, and by building on the partnerships our police have with federal law enforcement.”

If you had to reread that statement to see if there was anything meaningful said, don’t feel dumb. It was written for that purpose. Chicago is the city of double-faced politics, constantly drowning its citizenry in taxation with the promise to embetter its people, even though the city’s crime rate has been increasing rapidly over Emanuel’s tenure as mayor. The City of Chicago has one of the highest big-city sales tax rates in the nation, as well has a deplorably high sin tax on products which help people quit cigarettes, and yet they have the gall to ask for more funding?

The lack of funds isn’t the problem, it’s the administration. Bring in the feds. It’s blaringly obvious that Chicago politicians have no clue how to fix this disturbing issue.

Even though mainstream media will paint our orange-skinned leader as a force which will lead us to our doomsday, only time will tell. If the first two weeks of his presidency are any indicator, we’re in for some tumultuous changes, whether we agree with them or not.