Recent comments by United States president Donald Trump are worrying for at least one Government legislator.
While referencing a recent global ranking that put Barbados ahead of the US as the 16th freest country in the world, Senator Reginald Hunte today expressed concern over what he deemed to be alarming statements coming from the 45th president of the US.
“What is going on in the United States, [as] seen as democracy, is being threatened. That is not an idle statement, that is a fact.
“The kinds of statements you hear coming out [of the United States] I have never heard in all my years. I’ve been following politics since John F Kennedy. . . . I have never heard the kind of statements and rhetoric coming out from a leader of the most powerful economy in the world and a country that people looked up to. I don’t know if anybody looking up to the United States of America now. It is unfortunate,” Hunte said, while questioning, “How can you isolate yourself from the rest of the world by saying America first, but you are selling products to the people and want them to buy them? . . . The world today is not like 40 years ago.
“You may be powerful in a lot of ways, but people can still do what they want to do,” he added.
Hunte told the Senate: “I have great concerns because I said in a debate here that the future of Barbados depends on what happens in the rest of the world because the world is becoming smaller and smaller.”
Last month, Barbados joined the majority of countries around the world at the United Nations in voting against the United States’ plan to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and move its embassy there.
However, prior to the vote, Trump had threatened that if the UN voted against his country, the US would “save a lot”.
“They take hundreds of millions of dollars and even billions of dollars and then they vote against us. Well, we’re watching those votes. Let them vote against us. We’ll save a lot. We don’t care.
“We don’t care. But this isn’t like it used to be where they could vote against you and then you pay them hundreds of millions of dollars. We’re not going to be taken advantage of any longer,” Trump had said.
The US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, had also warned that she would be “taking names” of those countries that voted in support of the resolution.
“The United States will remember this day, on which it was singled out for attack in the General Assembly for the very act of exercising our right as a sovereign nation.
“America will put our embassy in Jerusalem. That is what the American people want us to do and it is the right thing to do. No vote in the United Nations will make any difference on that,” she added.
Since those controversial comments, Trump has been facing a maelstrom of protest, both at home and abroad, after he reportedly questioned why America was taking in so many citizens from “shithole” countries, such as El Salvador Haiti and Africa – which are predominately black nations – instead of having more immigrants from Norway, a white Scandinavian country.
Barbados has joined with the rest of CARICOM in condemning those remarks, which reportedly came during an
immigration-related meeting with lawmakers at the White House.