Why Trump’s presidency is largely defined by Barack Obama


Credit: US Department of State | Creative Commons

Trump meets with Obama in the Oval Office.

Now that Trump has lost the election, it has given Americans time to reflect on the myriad of unorthodox, unconventional and sometimes just plain crazy things he’s done while in office. A common phrase that has emerged in America in the last few years is “If Obama said it…” This is in reference to the fact that Trump supporters and members of the Republican party have spent the last four years defending the indefensible statements he’s made while pointing out that if Barack Obama had said anything even remotely close to them, he would never have been elected in the first place.

Before he was elected president in 2016, Trump was arguably Obama’s most passionate critic, beginning with his foundation of what is now referred to as the “birther movement,” the belief that Obama was actually born in Kenya. While there is still no evidence of that, Trump refused to let it go, often demanding to see Obama’s “real” birth certificate. The situation came to a head at the 2011 White House Correspondents’ Dinner, where President Obama and late night talk-show host Seth Meyers took jabs at Trump, who was sitting in the audience. The coup de grace was when President Obama, in reference to Trump’s birtherism comments, played a clip from the opening scene of the cartoon film “The Lion King” (which takes place in Africa), calling it his “birth video.” Many people, including Meyers himself, believe the bashing he received that night is what motivated Trump to run for president.

In addition, just days later, Trump’s television show “The Celebrity Apprentice” was interrupted by President Obama announcing the assassination of Osama Bin-Laden. While it was probably just a coincidence, it is certainly plausible that Trump believed Obama did it on purpose, as it is widely known that he is extremely thin-skinned. Now one might say “what kind of person would try to become president just because they were the butt of some jokes?” Donald J. Trump is exactly that kind of person.

His entire life has been defined by the perceived slights people have made against him, including Obama, as well as Colin Kaepernick, Steph Curry, the Central Park Five, Lebron James, Don Lemon, Whoopi Goldberg, Al Sharpton, Maxine Waters, Stacey Abrams and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris (I’m sensing a pattern here…) While Trump has no shortage of “enemies,” his utter hatred for Obama has to be the most significant, as it drove him to the point of running for the office of President of the United States, all because Obama played a one-minute clip from a children’s cartoon that hurt his feelings.