For Freshmen. By Freshmen.
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Jan 23 2018
by Melanie Haid

Why We Need a Politician for President

By Melanie Haid - Jan 23 2018

In light of Oprah’s idea of perhaps running for President in the next term, I have been faced with a strange, Hunger Games-esque scenario where we may never again have a qualified candidate run for Presidential office. Imagine, game show and talk show hosts alike, battling it out on the political arena to decide who would next govern our country – no, not in a reality TV show, but actually in real life.

While some believe Oprah would make a better Presidential candidate than our current head of state, her lack of political experience is still something to heavily consider. As an African-American woman, she has done a great deal in her lifetime to create opportunities not only for herself but for others as well, including programs such as The Oprah Winfrey Show, the Oprah Winfrey Network and has co-authored many books, as well as appearing in films and TV shows.

It is especially important to consider that she came, quite literally from nothing to something, having grown up in poverty and now being the first African-American multi-billionaire in North America. There is no doubt in my mind that she is a strong and powerful woman and someone to look up to, however, maybe not inside the White House.

While she has overcome a great deal and worked extremely hard towards success and achievement, this alone should not make her eligible to run a country, although this past election has proven that anyone with enough money in the bank can do it. She is a role model, yes, and promotes good habits, surely, but political experience is something that is lacking heavily and something that should (in a perfect world) be a mandatory qualification to run for office.

When Donald Trump first ran, I for one placed little emphasis on him, mainly because I never could have imagined that someone with absolutely no experience could be placed in the highest political position in the country. He, too, is a very successful businessman, producer, television personality and even owned the Miss Universe and Miss USA pageants for a short time. So both of these people have led quite successful lives and have made names for themselves, so many feel, “Why shouldn’t they run the country?”

Politics are not simple and should be handled by those who have experience in the field, at least in my opinion. If Stephen King decided one day that he wanted to become a brain surgeon, would we let him operate on us knowing that he never attended medical school, but ignoring this fact due to his achievements otherwise? You may think I’m being a bit dramatic, but isn’t brain surgery about up to par with running one of the most influential countries in the world?

This is not to say that people cannot learn or change professions, but with something as important as the Presidency and an entire country’s future at stake, I have an issue with both Trump in office and Winfrey considering running for it. It is one thing to support someone you look up to, but it is much more sensible to focus on their qualifications and knowledge of the subject area, as well as experience when it comes to being chosen for a job. Because like anything else, being President is a job – so why would we want to hire unqualified candidates for such a position of power?

I would certainly not be opposed to someone of celebrity status running for president, if they did have previous qualifications. After all, we put a TV show host in the White House and many seem to agree that it has not benefited the country very much. There are plenty of qualified men and women of a magnitude of races, backgrounds, accomplishments and capabilities that could fill this seat and inspire us just as much, maybe more, as well as leading our country with wisdom and experience. But if we continue letting TV personalities run for office and become President based on their status and achievement, who is to say that our future doesn’t hold a nationwide game show that we’re all playing in?

Lead Image Credit: Jerry Keisewetter on Unsplash

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Melanie Haid - Hofstra University

Melanie Haid is a freshman at Hofstra University and is on track to getting her Masters in Journalism with a minor in German. She writes for FreshU, Her Campus, OneClass and is a Staff Writer for the News and Opinion-Editorial sections of the Hofstra Chronicle. She is also a Copy-Editor for the Hofstra English Society's literary magazine, Font, and has been involved in Relay for Life for 7 years.

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