In Defense of Trump's Character | Opinion

Over the last four years, I have heard numerous Republicans say, "Trump's policies are great, but he is a poor role model for young Americans." I beg to differ. I believe President Trump is, in many ways, an exemplary role model, particularly for our youth. Here's why:

(1) President Trump works virtually nonstop. In a 2018 interview, Trump's former chief of staff, Reince Priebus, said, "I've always been able to outwork anybody. President Trump is the exception to the rule."

Trump sleeps little, disdains vacations, works exhaustively to succeed and seems to possess boundless energy. He has little patience for the tame life—which is perhaps why he's the first president in 170 years not to own a pet while in office.

Countless young Americans, meanwhile, are taught to complain, to expect life to be handed to them on a silver platter, to be envious of the rich and to "chill." Many of them regard retiring at age 65 so they can relax on a beach sipping tequila to be the purpose of life. They are lazy, entitled and moody. In short, Trump is everything that members of the younger generation aren't—and, therefore, a perfect role model for them.

(2) Trump doesn't dwell on past foibles. Some may consider this habit a fault, but I believe it's badly needed in a modern America where people love sitting on psychologists' couches endlessly replaying their lives and obsessing over every bad episode in it.

Made a mistake? That's okay. Learn from it and move on—quickly.

(3) Trump cherishes excellence. Everything he does has to be the best, the biggest, the boldest. Yes, he sometimes overdoes it (is it really a big deal if Obama had a larger inauguration crowd than he did, considering that 91 percent of Washington, D.C. voted for Hillary?). But when is the last time we had a president who loved excellence so much that he couldn't tolerate settling for second best?

In America today, we give kids participation trophies just for showing up. We celebrate effort as much as we do achievement. And we spend an inordinate amount of time, as the late Judge Robert Bork wrote, "trying to build students' self-esteem [rather than] teaching them skills and knowledge that would justify self-esteem." In short, in many regards, we glorify mediocrity. Trump is the perfect antidote for this cultural penchant.

President Trump campaigning in Pennsylvania
President Trump campaigning in Pennsylvania Mark Makela/Getty Images

(4) Trump is fearless. He doesn't care who opposes him or what his enemies threaten to do to him. He defends his values and positions no matter the price. How many of us act that way?

Children, teenagers and young adults often fear what their peers will say. "How will they react if I speak my mind?" "What will they think of me?" "What if they say I'm weird or old-fashioned?"

Every moment that Trump is president is a message to youngsters: No, you don't have to apologize. You don't have to back down. If you're right, proclaim the truth loudly and fear no man. You won't suffer as a result—not long term, anyway. Far from it. You will earn widespread respect and admiration—from God and from man. You may even become president of the United States one day.

(5) Trump loves America. All his rallies—which are veritable USA lovefests—begin with the patriotic Lee Greenwood song, "God Bless the USA," and Trump has even been known on occasion to kiss the American flag upon entering a stage. Many politicians nowadays have difficulty defending traditional American heroes. Not Trump. He proudly—and unapologetically—celebrates Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, MacArthur and Patton with as much fervor as our grandparents did.

(6) Trump speaks straightforwardly. He doesn't hide what he's thinking behind misleading or ambiguous language. Ask Trump a question and you'll get a clear, non-canned response. Sure, he exaggerates on occasion, but there is almost never any doubt where Trump stands on any given issue.

Naturally, Trump has character flaws—who doesn't? But overall, I believe the overwhelming majority of the American youth benefit immensely by having Trump as president. He's industrious, fearless, patriotic, transparent, not enslaved by past mistakes and satisfied with nothing less than excellence.

In short, he's a walking inspiration. We'd be blessed to have him in the White House for another four years.

Elliot Resnick is the chief editor of The Jewish Press.

The views expressed in this article are the writer's own.