Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Democracy on the line in the USA


l had to write this letter because I am profoundly disturbed by what is transpiring in the country right next door to mine.  From my perch here in Canada, I've been watching events unfold south of the border.  It seems to me that the American union is in greater peril than at any time since the Civil War of 1861 to 1865.  Sadly, Senator Lindsey Graham warned of "riots in the streets" if Donald Trump is prosecuted for his latest misdeed - taking boxes of classified documents to his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida, some designated "Top Secret."  He put the security of Americans in jeopardy.

Even if Donald Trump is finally held to account for his actions, Trumpism will remain alive.  The Trump agenda will continue to be supported by Republicans in Congress and by many Republican voters.  The former president is the most notorious bully in the world and he behaves like a mob boss. He refuses to accept responsibility.  If he finds himself in hot water, he has two plans ready and waiting.  Plan A is to blame someone else.  It's always someone else's fault  - Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Joe Biden or all those left-wing Democrats.  Trump's Plan 2 is to take the spotlight off his wrongdoings and accuse others of crimes - Hunter Biden and his laptop, Hillary Clinton and her emails.

There is a moral sickness in America, a lack of civility and empathy.  Frankly, I have difficulty understanding the mentality of some of my American neighbours.  I realize that dyed-in-the-wool Trumpers don't care what Donald Trump does.  As Trump himself famously declared, he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and "not lose any voters."  They are just interested in turning the clock back to some kind of Leave it to Beaver era.  Many fear sharing any power with African Americans, Latinos, Asians-Americans, Muslims, immigrants, woman etc.  "Male America Great Again" is a a dog whistle for "Make America White Again."

These stalwart Trump supporters can't go back in time, though.  They will have to give up some of the pie, but they will be kick and scream about it constantly.  

After all Trump has done, he should not be considered a viable candidate for commander and chief of the United States of America.  At the very least, he should not be permitted to run for public office in the United States.  In another era, Trump would not be considered acceptable as a presidential candidate.  Allow me to remind you of a few other incidents in American political history.

* In 1972, Senator Edmund S. Muskie of Maine was the frontrunner in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination.  Muskie had been Hubert Humphrey's vice-residential running mate in a losing campaign against Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew.  During the New Hampshire primary, a letter came to light alleging that Muskie had approved and made light of the term "Canuck" for  French-speaking Canadians.  There were reports that Muskie had shed tears over the accusation.  Nixon's Committee to Re-elect the President, the aptly named CREEP, was behind the letter.  

* In 1987, Colorado Senator Gary Hart was a leading candidate for the 1988 Democratic presidential nomination.  During the campaign, Hart, who had a wife and daughter, was linked to a woman named Donna Rice.  , On May 8, 1987, a week after the scandal broke, Hart suspended his campaign when the Washington Post threatened to publish a story about a woman Hart had dated while separated from his wife.

Fast forward to 2016.  On October 6th of that year, a month before the American presidential election, the Washington Post published a video and an article about a very lewd conversation about women between then-presidential candidate Donald Trump and television host Billy Bush.  They were on their way to a taping of Access Hollywood.  During the conversation, Trump described his attempt to seduce a married woman and indicated the possibility that he would start kissing a woman that he and Bush were about to meet.  "I don't even wait," Trump bragged.  "And when you're a star, they let you do it.  You can do anything . . ."  

Trump bragged about groping women, but that did not prevent him from running for president.  News about the recording was made public just two days before the second presidential debate between Trump and his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton.  Trump issued a statement in which he apologized for the content of the video. but of course he remarked that Bill Clinton had "said far worse on the golf course."  He also dismissed his Access Hollywood remarks as "locker room talk."

It appears that Donald Trump is a Harry Houdini when it comes to escaping from the rule of law and from accountability for his actions.  He may be a master escape artist, but he is not invincible.  He can't and won't evade justice forever.  He will eventually meet his Waterloo.  He must be held accountable in order to demonstrate that no person is above the law, where king or commoner, prince or pauper, Donald J. Trump or John Q. Public.  It is ingrained in the American Declaration of Independence that "all men are created equal."

The belief that anyone is above the law is a dangerous and undemocratic concept.  It's something that Richard Nixon believed and it led to the Watergate scandal.  Nixon was a choir boy in comparison to Donald Trump.  He resigned rather than face an impeachment trial.  Nothing would make Trump resign.  He is shameless.  If he should win the presidency again, he will become the autocrat he has always wanted to be.  

The midterm elections are being held today.  If the polls are correct, the Republicans will most likely take both the House of Representatives and the Senate.  The sad thing is that the Republican Party is no longer a real political party.  It is a cult, controlled by the autocratic Donald Trump and is only interested in obtaining power.  It want to supress voters from exercising their franchise.  It blames the Democrats for inflation, when inflation is a world-wide problem.  Republicans have no viable solution other than to reduce Medicare and lower taxes for the rich.

The Republican Party is controlled by a man who behaves like a Mafia leader.  He refused to accept defeat in the 2020 election and sparked a volent insurrection against the turnover of power to Joe Biden.  He identifies with hard-right neo-Nazis such as the Proud Boys.  If Republicans do well today, it will be another blow for American democracy.  What next?  Trump running for president again with Marjorie Taylor Greene as his VP running mate?  



  • No comments:

    Post a Comment