Letter: Trump’s loyalty pledge
To the Editor:
Prior to becoming president, Donald Trump required loyalty from “my people,” the people who worked for him, often firing employees he considered unreliable. Is he now thinking of applying his loyalty criteria to United States federal civil service employees?
The New York Times reported that President Trump asked Mr. Comey, then director of the FBI, if he would pledge his loyalty to him. Mr. Comey declined but said he would be honest with him. Apparently, this was not what the president wanted to hear, and President Trump has since threatened Mr. Comey through Twitter — “James Comey better hope that there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!”
President Trump later commented about personal loyalty in a TV interview, stating, “I don’t think it’s inappropriate to ask” and “I don’t think it would be a bad question to ask.” Such loyalty oaths are not new.
In Nazi Germany, the Fuhrer required pledges of unconditional personal loyalty, obedience, and allegiance to himself by the German armed forces and civil servants, in place of loyalty to the constitution of the country. The consequences of his loyalty pledge are well documented in the history of World War II.
Will our American Fuhrer make personal loyalty one of his next Executive Orders? What will be the consequences of such an order?
As Euripides (Greek playwright, c. 480-406 BC) said, “Whom the gods destroy they first make mad.”
Only time will tell.