Bradford Era article by SIDNEY PERALTA
Once everything is all said and done, the 45th administration of the United States will be a part of history. Whether that history will be looked back upon positively or negatively is still up for debate, as the Trump administration is still just a few months shy of its first year.
Dr. Rick Frederick, professor of history at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford, suggested that it was difficult to predict how the current presidency will be perceived down the line because of “how different of a president he is.”
Frederick believes that the President Donald Trump’s attempt to deliver policy is “sort of a bull rush,” with members of his own party showing resistance.
“This kind of tactic isn’t necessarily new, but it is much more used in the current administration, which has left (Trump) high and dry in his attempts to pass any significant legislation,” Frederick said.
Dr. Andrew Dzirkalis, an associate professor emeritus of political science at Pitt-Bradford, shared a similar sentiment about the president’s tactics, adding that the White House seems to be in a bit of turbulence.
“I have a general tendency to believe that Trump is doing some things rather well,” Dzirkalis said. “I just worry about his ego and his tendency to want be in charge of every detail. This is leading to a loosely structured White House.”
Dzirkalis further explained that the turbulence that Trump’s tactics has on the White House extends to every member in his staff, which can lead to them individually pursuing their own line.
With the administration looking to cut close to $3 billion from the Pell Grant, which is primarily used by students in need of help with the cost of higher education, Dzirkalis was in favor of the president’s stance.
“As a college professor, I’m not at all happy with all of our education,” he said. “It’s been oversold, with people believing that everybody ought to have a higher education. It’s rather unrealistic.”
Dzirkalis explained that although he agrees with the decision to cut back on spending for higher education, he would like to see the money reinvested into trade education.
“We need good electricians, welders and carpenters,” he said. “It can be a very rewarding and satisfying experience.”
Frederick took the opposite stance, frustrated with the cuts to higher education.
“It’s extremely demeaning to treat higher education as if it’s a detriment to the country,” he said. “(Trump) keeps talking about ‘no chaos’ in the White House when actions like this prove to anyone looking from the outside that there is nothing but madness going on there.”
Frederick maintained that it is still too soon to decide whether the Trump administration will end positively or negatively.
“We’ve got a long way to go, but as of now, he seems to refuse to work with Democrats in any way,” Frederick said. “I can only hope that he attempts to make compromises with Congress.”
Dzirkalis agreed about the premature analysis of the administration, even though he says he’s frustrated with the disorganization of the White House.
“What history will say will depend a whole lot on the economy’s growth, whether people find jobs, physical health determination and whether the world is closer to peace,” he said. “Will we have solved a lot of our international issues as well as our internal issues, these are the things that will determine the current administration’s place in history.”