Letter to the Editor

Odd juxtaposition

Monday, July 20, 2020

Sunday evening in an odd juxtaposition, I was watching “The Roosevelts” on Iowa Public TV and rereading Mary Trump’s book “Too Much and Never Enough” about her uncle Donald J. Trump. What a contrast in presidents! Franklin Roosevelt was ranked by historians as the third best president in history for his skills at public persuasion and foreign relations. Among his accomplishments were bringing the U.S. out of the Great Depression and reforming the financial system to prevent a repeat depression. During his first 100 days he established programs to feed the poor, construct homes, provide employment for the poor and homeless, establish nursery schools, and provide 500,000 jobs for women. He also organized the Civilian Conservation Corps to put unemployed men to work (2.5 million) planting trees, fighting forest fires and preventing erosion. He created the Agricultural Adjustment Administration to stabilize crop prices and modernize farming methods. The Public Works administration and the Tennessee Valley Authority created jobs for the unemployed, built infrastructure, improved working conditions, and outlawed child labor. Part of his New Deal included enacting Social Security. Roosevelt accomplished all this while handicapped from polio.

Trump’s dysfunctional family life as a child is largely to blame for his inability to face criticism or take advice, his lying, and his self-aggrandizement. “I am the greatest,” “nobody has ever done a better job,” “I know more than …” Really?!!! I can’t think of another president who spent most of his time golfing and tweeting. Worst of all, during a pandemic with thousands of people dying, he is muzzling the medical experts and spouting misinformation that has resulted in at least one death. We need a president who listens to the medical experts, follows expert advice and actually does some work!

— Mary Marske, Spencer