Checking boxes

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Making Sense by Michael Reagan

Donald Trump and a lot of cameras flew into East Palestine, Ohio, on Wednesday.

Yes, it was a typical Trump photo op. Yes, they were his MAGA people.

The mostly white working-class town on the Ohio-Pennsylvania border has nearly 5,000 souls and about 70 percent of them voted for him in 2020.

But Trump did something for the people of the polluted town on Wednesday that Joe Biden and Pete Buttigieg had not yet done – he showed up and showed them he cared.

Whatever you think about his style and personal flaws, Trump did a good thing by forcing the Biden administration to give East Palestine the federal attention it needed and deserved.

The derailment of a freight train carrying dangerous chemicals and the huge fire and mushroom cloud that followed it have made East Palestine the American Chernobyl.

Its residents are still breathing air that may be poisoned, smelling chemicals they can’t pronounce and worrying about their long-term health because of a disaster they didn’t cause but that has wrecked their lives and threatened their futures.

But while President Biden was doing his own photo op this week by making a surprise visit to Ukraine – where the real Chernobyl was – East Palestine’s people were still being short-changed by the federal government.

Their town was getting help from several federal agencies, including the EPA, whose scientists were testing the air inside homes and the soil and sampling the creeks that eventually run to the Ohio River.

But it was not until Thursday — three weeks after the derailment and a day after Trump’s visit – that Pete Buttigieg finally showed up.

Mayor Pete, as the boss of the Department of Transportation, is supposed to be in charge of fixing what’s wrong with our planes, trains, boats and infrastructure.

But until Thursday, Mayor Pete acted like the disaster in East Palestine was just another one of the 1,000 major and minor train derailments that occur in the country every year.

He avoided East Palestine like there was a plague going on there and tweeted something about visiting “when the time is right.”

Mayor Pete is proof that the Biden administration’s trickle-down incompetence starts in the Oval Office and seems to have no end.

But his string of mess-ups have made him the poster boy for what’s wrong with Joe Biden’s hiring policy.

He’s not an expert on anything that has to do with transportation, except maybe bicycle repair or filling potholes in South Bend.

His only qualification for getting his important cabinet position was that he checked the right identity box.

Just as his inept boss Kamala Harris became Biden’s VP solely because she checked two identity boxes, race and gender, Mayor Pete got his important, high-profile job because he was openly gay.


Biden and his sorry band of wokesters like Mayor Pete worry more about checking identity boxes and implementing divisive, harmful and imprecise things like “diversity, inclusion and equity” programs than improving schools or giving poor parents more school choice.

They also are polluting the educational system by pushing false history like the New York Times’ “Project 1619,” which says America was founded to protect slavery, and critical race theory, which teaches our school kids to hate America and each other.

It’s no secret Biden and his people hate Trump so much they’d rather hurt him than help the American public.

They’d rather let a massive flood of illegal immigrants sweep the country than keep Trump’s immigration policies intact.

They’d rather divide the American people into political and racial factions that hate each other than reach bipartisan solutions to our important problems.

In two years Biden’s deliberately divisive policies and his sick pursuit of wokeness have blown up or weakened our economy, our border security, our oil industry and our military.

Biden and gang are still trying to blame Donald Trump for the country’s many problems. But they need look in the mirror – and stop checking boxes.

Copyright 2023 Michael Reagan, distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate.

Michael Reagan, the son of President Ronald Reagan, is an author, speaker and president of the Reagan Legacy Foundation. Send comments to [email protected] and follow @reaganworld on Twitter.

Best selling author. Political Pundit. Michael Reagan is the son of former President Ronald Reagan and Academy Award Winning Actress Jane Wyman.