- Queen Elizabeth (courtesy of Pixaby)
Two stories dominated America’s headlines today. On one side of the Atlantic, Queen Elizabeth died at age 96.
She managed to serve her nation, the British Commonwealth and the Church of England with dignity and grace for 70 years. Most of her subjects genuinely mourn her death, and it saddens me as well.
On my side of the Atlantic, the American side, Donald Trump’s treachery continues to unfold in the aftermath of the FBI’s legal raid on his Florida home, Mar-a-Lago.
Trump “served” the U.S. for a mere four years and managed to commit more ungodly acts than I care to imagine.
Trump’s latest act of treachery is his worst to date. When he left the presidency, he stole documents that were so secret that even senior national security officials knew nothing about them.
He had no right to take the documents, much less store them in the basement of his Florida home where any visitor could read them.
An Admirable Woman
Two leaders – two stories….
Let’s begin with Queen Elizabeth.
The late queen ascended to the British throne and became Supreme Governor of the Church of England in 1952, when I was barely a year old. She seemed well suited for both roles.
As an American, I was not her subject, but I have always loved history and biographies of influential people. Her life interested me.
There was a great deal to admire, and I especially admired her Christian faith.
While politicians throughout the Christian world paid lip-service to their faith, she seemed genuinely Christian. She appeared to truly believe in and worship a much higher power than herself, which must have been humbling for a monarch.
She also had a strong sense of discipline, purpose and determination, and I admired her for those qualities, as well.
A Higher Power Than Any Queen
Queen Elizabeth once wrote that Jesus was “an inspiration and an anchor in my life,” according to the British Heritage website.
She also called the Savior a “role model of reconciliation and forgiveness,” who “stretched out his hands in love, acceptance and healing.”
Pope Francis sent his condolences to the royal family, the people of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth and praised the queen’s devotion to duty and her “steadfast witness of faith in Jesus Christ….”
The queen was largely a figurehead, but she provided her country with stability it might not otherwise have had for seven decades. It is hard to picture Britain without their queen.
No Wavering, No Retractions
Several years before she ascended to the throne, Elizabeth made a memorable promise to her people: “I declare before you that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service, and the service of our great imperial family to which we all belong,” according to the royal family’s website.
She was only 21 when she made the promise, but she exhibited a remarkable level of maturity for one so young. She never wavered or retracted any part of her pledge, keeping her word at a time when few leaders kept theirs.
A Thief, Unconscionable Liar, Racist & So Much More
On the American side of the Atlantic, descendants of rebels who once declared war on the British and their monarch are dealing with a very different situation.
We cannot seem to bring Donald Trump to justice or rid ourselves of him. He is like a nasty cancer that eats away at our very being as a nation.
Most presidents leave office with at least a show of dignity and settle into quiet lives away from America’s political stage. Trump has done neither.
He craves attention and continues to find unseemly ways of getting it. One has been to con supporters out of money they can barely spare in order to support his luxurious and ill-gotten lifestyle.
Theft and avarice aren’t his only sins. He created fraud on a massive scale by falsely claiming the 2020 election was stolen from him. He also cozied up to dictators like Vladimir Putin while serving as leader of the world’s greatest democracy.
He flaunted his affairs while courting and winning the nation’s evangelical vote. He freely admitted his racist, sexist, fascist and homophobic beliefs.
He is a crass, immature, vain and vulgar narcissist who has no principles…. I have not run out of adjectives to describe him, but I won’t continue.
My hope is that he faces justice and then vanishes into the prison cell he so richly deserves.
Two Leaders, Two Legacies
Great Britain and the Commonwealth mourn the loss of a woman who represented them to the world for 70 years. She was an excellent representative and an admirable personification of her country.
I have made my feelings about Donald Trump quite clear. I long for the day when he becomes a chapter in an American history book on how democracies should NOT operate, and historians dissect his presidency with sharp scalpels.
If I outlive Trump, I will feel nothing except a strong sense of relief when he dies.
In the meantime, I send my sincere condolences to the British people as they mourn the loss of a remarkable woman.