Most of the time, traveling around the world as an American has been positive. People are curious about the USA, our lifestyle, our professional sports, and our democracy. I generally stay out of politics and religious conversations with strangers. But in the last three plus years, the response is markedly different. Still respectful, they wonder what is wrong with us. Case in point:
|Pew: U.S. Image Plummets Internationally as Most Say Country Has Handled Coronavirus Badly|
“Since Donald Trump took office as president, the image of the United States has suffered across many regions of the globe a new 13-nation Pew Research Center survey illustrates.” According to the report, “In several countries, the share of the public with a favorable view of the U.S. is as low as it has been at any point since the Center began polling on this topic nearly two decades ago.”
When my travel buddy, Mr. Mike wore his “Not my President” T shirt (in about a dozen languages) in Hanoi, we were the stars of the show. All of the foreign travelers wanted a photo taken with him and his T shirt!
Even in business meetings in foreign countries, friends have said that “off the record” comments by their hosts are totally unexpected. Most of the comments ask what is wrong with us. Including many obscenities!!
My answer? This is what a free (maybe) and democratic election can bring. Anyone can run.
Bottom line: It is a total embarrassment. My next trip is planned for Nov. 5. I hope I can answer their questions in a completely different way. Foreigners look up to us, and expect more. Just give me the America I can be proud of again.