By Esther Fultz
According to Gallup poll results released Aug. 20, American opinions regarding President Joe Biden are very mixed. Following the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan, 49% of Americans were in favor of Biden while 51% did not support him or were unsure on their stance.
Dr. Robert Clark, Assistant Professor of History, pointed to Biden’s recent decision to share nuclear technology with Australia as a positive aspect of Biden’s presidency. While the decision did come with a cost, as Clark pointed out – namely, tension with one of our allies, France – he believes it’s a good position for the United States to hold.
“I think it was a brilliant move and I’m pleased about it,” Clark said. “It’s a way to counterbalance the power of China and their expansionism.”
Clark also pointed out Biden’s efforts to get Democrats and Republicans working together in Congress as a positive aspect of his presidency.
However, Biden’s presidency has not been without challenges, most notably his decision to withdraw U.S. troops after 20 years of military involvement in Afghanistan.
Dr. Kevin Sims, senior professor of political science said, “We pulled out all of our troops before we got all the Americans out. Before we got all the Afghans who supported our military out… We’re hearing now that the Taliban is finding those people and killing them… That was a really big mistake.”
The rate of immigration at the southern border is also concerning for many Americans. Two hundred thousand people crossed the border last month, and eleven thousand more wait to cross now.
“They’re coming from everywhere,” Sims said. “They’re not just farmworkers from Mexico… A number of people have the Covid virus when they get here and we’re not treating them. We’re loading them on buses and airplanes and sending them across the United States.”
The government does this with the assumption that all these people will report back for their court date when their applications come up for asylum when in reality only a small fraction of them are likely to do so.
Not only can open borders and a failure to vet immigrants create a threat to national security, but the large influx of people that is inevitable under such policies also results in inhumane living conditions for the migrants involved.
“The suffering at the border and the situation at the immigration centers and not having enough facilities is really a problem of [the Biden administration’s] own making,” Clark said. “[They] invited all these people to come but didn’t have a place for them and didn’t have a plan of how to manage it. A humanitarian tragedy is what results.”
Added to the list of Biden’s controversial policies is his response to COVID-19. His recent mandate of the vaccine for companies with over 100 employees, in particular, presents constitutional difficulties.
Clark said he thinks the mandate is an overreach, although he acknowledges these issues are difficult to judge and it’s important for the government to be involved in issues concerning public health.
“I think it’s going to get tested,” Sims said, in reference to the vaccine mandate. “I think it’s going to end up in court, and I think, ultimately, he’ll lose.”
It’s still early on in Biden’s presidency. A lot has happened, with a few events being positive but also many that have been problematic. No matter what the political future holds, Christians can find comfort in the knowledge God controls it all. As Daniel 4:17 says, “The Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom He will.”
Esther Fultz is a sophomore Social Work major and an Off-Campus and On-Campus writer for Cedars. She enjoys writing songs, spending time outdoors, drinking coffee, and hanging with friends.