When the Giving Tree Stops Giving
Shel Silverstein's 1964 classic The Giving Tree provides the answer. The Giving Tree explores the dynamics of giving and taking through the story of a boy and an apple tree. The tree loves the boy and gives him apples, shade, and a place to play. The boy happily takes what the giving tree gladly gives. As the boy gets older he continues to take without regard to the consequences for the giving tree. He takes her apples, her branches, and her trunk until all that is left of the giving tree is just a stump that the boy sits on.
The Giving Tree is a cautionary tale that illustrates how prolonging childhood "taking" and protracting childhood "giving" of unconditional love are destructive to the giver and to the taker.
The Marshall Plan was in operation for four years but created a paternalistic dependency upon the United States that has continued unabated for 70 years until President Donald Trump finally said, "Enough is enough." President Trump is determined to end the prolonged dependency by pressuring the countries of the world to become responsible self-supporting entities.
President Trump's America first policies are designed to decrease the world's dependence on America and reduce our unsustainable trade deficit. The United States has become the giving tree and President Trump will not allow her to become a stump.