Republican Debate: Excuse Me, I Need a Minute

Here I am again, the German exchange student getting confused and slightly disrupted by things that seem normal to most Americans. I watched the Republican Debate that was on TV Wednesday, the 16th of September. And I am slightly confused as to how exactly politics work in this country. Please don’t get me wrong – I don’t mean to disrespect anyone, but there are some serious questions that popped into my mind before, during, and while watching these eleven people talk so passionately about what they believe in.

That’s a good thing in theory, I guess. You should be passionate about what you think. But when it comes down to it, is it really necessary to place a serious political debate next to a gigantic airplane that says “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” on it? Maybe it’s one of those cultural differences again – but for me the whole scenario kind of screamed “movie set”. It just seemed rather odd that they would also do this while a lot of people from the public (at least that what it seemed like to me, sorry if I’m wrong – I’m German, we rarely get things properly right) are cheering them on? When we have debates like this, it is usually within an already established political TV show, very small and intimate, where chosen people can ask certain questions to the politicians who it may concern.

Sorry, I’m just not following the concept of wrapping up a political debate into a huge entertainment event? Shouldn’t it be more serious? Then, again – maybe I’m thinking too German; always practical and without any unnecessary hype around it. It just kind of stuck out to me.

Then the debate actually started. I can proudly say that I knew two people who were standing on stage. It was George W. Bush’s brother and of course – Donald Trump. Okay, I don’t even want to start talking about Trump just yet, because I feel like this will turn into a rant rather than into an opinion, because he is… somewhat special. To use the best euphemism I could think of at the back of my head. I felt like the whole atmosphere in the arena was pretty hostile. Even though they’re supposed to be from the same party, they still seem like everything they ever stated about anything in their programmes is completely different from one another. I don’t understand how this works. I mean I get the gist – they all want to run for president, they’re competing , it’s a race! But sometimes I seriously doubted some of the participants’ actual maturity. The comeback to some of the questions which were legitimately asked with a solid reason were often welcomed with the wit and rhetoric artistic abilities of a twelve-year-old kid who thinks he’s cool now because one of his friends just turned 14.

Oh, and there we are again, talking about Trump (among others I can assure you – most of them didn’t really feel the need to actually answer questions… because that’s totally not what this debate was for… But anyways. Politicians, am I right). I will go right out and say it – I don’t understand how someone like Donald Trump could even get into the race of becoming a possible candidate for presidency? I mean, oh god? He says that he respects women, even though he was clearly sexist towards one of the other competing Republican candidates, who identified as female. Here’s a question for you Donald Trump – since you are obviously so focused on the looks of other candidates (because he made a comment about her face being unpleasant), how can you then say you will take care of women when you can’t even take care of your own hair!? Seriously, just go with it, hair falls out, that’s life, that’s aging. Just, accept that you’re getting older. Also, just a little something on your immigration policy: Are “illegal immigrants”, as you put it, just limited to Mexicans and other people who are not rooted in Europe? Because, my dear Mr. Trump, your ancestors were also immigrants. America is an immigrant country to my knowledge, so why are you and people like you more legal than others? Well, don’t we all know the answer to that. And that’s a story I won’t even get into, because that is one line of thinking which has no rationality or logic whatsoever.

Anyway, it sure was nice to experience a thing like this debate while I’m staying here and I will continue on being slightly confused as to what exactly is happening over here. I’m sure I’ll either get used to it or… still be confused. Let’s see where this debate and presidency campaign will take America – I’m really excited and yet equally terrified. And lastly there is just one thing left for me to say: Please don’t throw me out. Cheers!

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