April 28, 2017

John Kenneth White, professor, politics, wrote an op-ed in the New York Daily News on Trump’s first 100 days in the presidency, and Pope Francis.


"Why them and not me?" That's the question Pope Francis asks of himself when thinking about his own life and his family's journey from Italy to Argentina. It's a humble question, not a self-centered one, as the Pope casts himself in the role of a refugee fleeing "terrible hardships," or prison inmates "who carry a hell of pain inside their hearts," or young people who can't find a job.

It's also a question that's at the center of Pope Francis's historic trip to Egypt. His message calling for "religious openness" and an end to violence is endemic to the Holy See, and welcome in a place where ISIS supporters are on the rise and Christian churches have been attacked by extremists.

But the Pope's visit is more than an appeal for "sincere dialogue" between Christians and Muslims; it is a pointed counterpoint to what Pope Francis has denounced as "demagogic populism." The spread of nativist, "me-first" rhetoric has won audiences in the Netherlands, France, the United Kingdom, and, most importantly, in the United States. Donald Trump's rise to the presidency came at a moment when populism was ascendant, and Americans — weary of war and impatient with a political system that no longer seemed to work for them — turned to Trump, who promised, "I alone can fix it."

Continue reading in the Daily News.

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