Donald TrumpBy ALEX ARENSON Remember that wonderful movie “The American President”? It’s hard to believe it’s twenty years old. A lot has happened since then, but the brilliant screenplay by Aaron Sorkin still resonates.

There’s a great scene in the Oval Office when President Andrew Shepherd is meeting with his senior staff. Shepherd’s polling numbers are disastrous. The Republican rabble rouser Sen. Bob Rumson, aka Donald Trump, has been successfully attacking his patriotism. So far, Shepherd has refused to join the battle.
Lewis Rothschild (wonderfully played by Michael J. Fox) admonishes him: “....People want leadership, Mr. President, and in the absence of genuine leadership, they’ll listen to anyone who steps up to the microphone...They’re so thirsty for it they’ll crawl through the desert toward a mirage, and when they discover there’s no water, they’ll drink the sand”.
The latest U.S. polls have Donald Trump at 39% in the Republican primary race, more than twice the support of his nearest rival Sen. Ted Cruz. Trump is even polling well in Canada. In a recent Angus Reid poll, 33% of Canadians approved of his proposal to ban Muslim immigration. Liberals everywhere, and many conservatives, are gnashing their teeth and howling at the moon. “The sky is falling! The sky is falling!” He’s a buffoon. He’s a dangerous racist. He’s anti-Muslim. He’s xenophobic. And for some, he’s another Hitler.
    My response to Trump? Let’s all slow down and get some perspective. Aside from his hardcore nut bar support most of Trump’s extraordinary numbers are a reflection of President Obama’s ineptitude and lack of leadership. Some examples:
  -Trump didn’t release five Taliban terrorists from Guantanamo Bay in exchange for the traitor/deserter Sgt. Bergdahl and        invite him and his parents to the White House where they recited a Muslim prayer.
  -Trump didn’t make the disastrous kowtowing nuclear deal  with the terrorist Iranian regime.
  -Trump didn’t react to the Islamic terrorist attack at Fort Hood in which thirteen soldiers were murdered by referring to it as a     workplace incident.
  -Trump didn’t direct the disastrous destabilization of Libya, leaving it much more dangerous than it was under Gaddafi.
  -Trump didn’t go on numerous million-dollar-a-day golfing holidays while millions of Americans live below the poverty line.
  -Trump didn’t invite that teenager (and his family) to the White House as a reward for bringing a fake bomb to school.
What about Trump’s pledge to temporarily halt Muslim immigration into the U.S.? I don’t endorse that as a solution. But the fact that that pledge has enhanced his popularity speaks to the legitimate fears that many people have regarding the constant barrage of Islamic terrorist outrages and threats throughout the world and here in North America.
 In the absence of leadership people will crawl through the desert toward a mirage. On the morning before the ISIL outrage in Paris, Obama proudly announced that his Administration had succeeded in containing ISIL. As one jaded observer remarked: “to where? The planet Earth?”
Last time I checked it wasn’t Donald Trump who perpetrated the San Bernardino massacre, or Paris, or Fort Hood, or 9-11, or the murder of Cpl. Cirillo. It was Islamic terrorists. Folks, let’s keep our eye on the ball here.