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American President Essay

When I think of which characteristics that makes a good president I expect that person to be honest, trustworthy and confident. The President is our country’s leader. A leader needs to be trusted and be known to live their life with honestly and integrity. A good leader is confident. In order to lead and set the direction of our country the president needs to appear confident as a person and in the leadership role. Each and every American president is looked at differently by people. Of the presidents that I have studied so far I think that Presidents Washington, Jackson and Lincoln have shown that they were honest, trustworthy and confident in their abilities. President Washington was so highly trusted as a leader and citizen that he turned down a bid by some of his officers to be named king. Instead, he was very aware that his actions as President would set precedents for the future of the office and he carefully considered every step he took. When General Washington was suffering year after year of humiliating defeats before going on to final victory he paid his troops out of his own pocket to keep them from going home. Washington earned the unlimited confidence of those early citizens of the United States. President Jackson once said, "Every good citizen makes his county's honor his own, and cherishes it not only as precious but sacred. He is willing to risk his life in its defense and it’s conscious that he gains protections while he gives it." This quote by Andrew Jackson reflects his views as a president, military leader, and American citizen. President Lincoln was most certainly known for his honesty. He is regarded by many Americans as the greatest president to ever hold office in the history of the United States, and his reputation is definitely well deserved. Lincoln wasn't scared to stand up and fight for what he knew was right. He was able to lead our country and preserve the Union, keeping the United States from falling apart during the difficult times of the Civil War.
Based on the relationship that President Shepherd had with Sidney Allen Wade in the film, “The American President” I would vote for him in his bid for re-election. He was able to use honesty and trust to re-build his relationship with Wade and Congress. But I do think that he should have played it that way from the start. The president’s personal life should not be part of the public’s concern. Unless of course he does something to embarrass himself or the office, like President Clinton did. Naturally, after he lost his wife to cancer, the president’s rekindled personal love life is going to be on the front page news. But because he goes out with Wade his ratings go down. Of course the American public wants its president to be focused on the White House and not chasing women. President Shepherd ignored the criticism until the very end when he is delivering his very powerful speech to Congress. He flexes his authoritative muscles and you feel the power of the president as he speaks with confidence.
I would have liked the issue of gun control to have been a bigger part of the film. The Second Amendment to the Constitution protects the rights of individual American citizens to own a gun for lawful purposes such as self defense, hunting, or recreational use. The Second Amendment to the Constitution states “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.” I think that banning gun ownership is not good for an individuals’ security. Close to 40 percent of homes in the United States have a gun on the premises. If someone wants to legally own a gun for defense, they should have the freedom to do so. Gun ownership allows someone to be responsible for defending themselves, rather than relying on the government or police for protection. Gun control does not reduce crime. When guns are banned, criminals continue to commit crimes with guns while law abiding citizens have less protection for themselves. The media’s portrayal of guns ignores the benefits and positive outcomes that guns have done to save lives. That is not to say that I do not believe we need to have gun control laws. I do feel there needs to be a ban on assault weapons and the high capacity magazines like the ones used in recent acts of violence against innocent citizens. There are many ways that the government has tried to control gun ownership, including: waiting periods to receive a gun after purchasing, bans on specific guns, registration, and background checks. I think the registration process needs to include all guns and involve the federal government to track all sales. The laws should be enacted by the federal government and enforced on a state level. The governors of each state could enact local laws to support their enforcement.

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