Our country is under attack, not as much from external enemies, but from within. Donald Trump, with the help of Republican conspirators in Congress, is consciously and willfully undermining and shredding our democracy. Unbelieveable as this may seem, he might just succeed. By declaring “the system is rigged,” he is creating an atmosphere of distrust where many people do not believe anything that his supposed opponents profess. This means that if Robert Mueller finds compelling evidence that Trump has colluded with the Russians or has obstructed justice, Trump’s minions will ignore the evidence and go on supporting their “Supreme Leader” as they would in North Korea or Iran or Russia.
Call this what you will. I call it autocracy, or worse, a Fascist dictatorship. Our Founding Fathers worried about such a development, building into the Constitution a system of checks and balances to protect us against it. But those wise men didn’t figure on a megalomaniac like Donald Trump to assume the Presidency of our country.
Of course our first and foremost worry is a nuclear war–a very real possibility given two impulsive and power hungry men are involved. Recent tensions are rising. Wild threats are increasing. The political air is bristling with electric intensity. Neither of these men has a moral compass to lead them. Neither of them is completely rational. Both are armed to the teeth and unhinged. Both are under tremendous pressure to appear strong and powerful to their base as well their military establishments. We are as close to nuclear war as we were when Kennedy faced down Khrushchev during the 1962 Cuban missile crisis. And we have no Madam Secretary like Tea Leoni.
So let’s say we somehow survive this crisis. What’s next? Despite Tom Steyer’s best efforts, impeachment of Trump is improbable without Republican assistance as they did with Nixon. And Robert Mueller’s investigation could take years. As for current Congressional committee investigations, they are proving to be worthless under Republican leadership. The one road out of the wilderness is the midterm election of 2018. To disempower Trump, the Democratic Party must retake control of one, if not both, houses of Congress. This is not impossible, given Trump’s seriously low poll ratings only 10 months into his administration. But what is needed is for the Democrats to unify in their efforts to resist and oppose Trump and his policies of division and hatred, and heal the divisions within its own party–divisions among progressives and centrists, between women and men, between millennials and elders, between far left and left, between Bernie supporters and Hillaryites, between the working class and the middle class Democrats, between working class Democrats who voted for Obama in ’08 and ’12 and working class Democrats who disdained Hillary in 2016 and voted for Trump, contributing to his unlikely victory, despite having lost the popular vote overall.
Can the Democrats accomplish this historic feat? For if we can, we can effectively rid the swamp of Trump and his mean-spirited efforts to undo everything Barack Obama accomplished during his two terms, despite treasonous opposition from the party of No: The Republican Party.
My appeal to you and those you come in contact with? Make it happen. Get out there and speak up, help out, makes calls, volunteer at tables. Contribute money. Never has it ever been more important to do so. Our democracy is at stake. Our freedoms are at stake. The environment of the planet Earth is at stake. The fate of our great republic is at stake, with dry reeds and kindling and wood ready to be lit by Trump’s blowtorch.
Barbara F Barbour says
I walked with your walks in Berkeley (in 1991- my signed book is written), and just now was yrying to think of a place to walk to suit my mood and thus picked up one of your books. And I think, where is Stephen? I miss those walks and have wondered where you disappeared to.
So, here I am emailing you instead of walking. But I did want to make contact, after these many years. I will propell myself outside and later read your website more thoughtfully.
This isn’t a comment about anything-just a personal hello and not meant for political or other postings.
Delighted to learn that you’re quite active it seems and probably still exploring and walking.
Stephen Altschuler says
I do remember you from years ago during my time in Berkeley. Sorry this reply has taken so long but I’ve been struggling with some severe medical issues for the last two years, and am now in recovery. Am currently living in southwestern WA with my wife, and, though retired from social service, continue to write and stay creatively active during this difficult pandemic. I hope you’re well and thriving. Best,Stephen