Someone once asked Willie Sutton “Why do you rob banks?” “Cause that’s where the money is,” Sutton famously replied. Same thing Trump would say if someone asked, “Why do you continue with the Big Lie?” Or “Why do you support LIV Golf?” Or “Why do you continually attack Liz Cheney?” Or why do you now attack the FBI?” Or “Why do you call the Capitol rioters patriots?” Or “Why do you continue to dangle the possibility of running again in 2024?” All the same answer for the same reason. Trump’s father drilled it into his head early on, “Whatever you do, go where the money is and do whatever you need to do to get it.”
And for Trump, all of the above leads to incoming money from gullible followers who will indeed support their cult leader, as he said, “even if I went out and killed someone on 5th Avenue.” It’s a sickness, on Trump’s part, certainly; but on his follower’s part as well, voters and politicians who each have their motives for supporting a terribly off-balanced human being who happens to have a lot of political power at the moment.
I say “at the moment” for that won’t always be the case. One day, Trump will be a cipher, a footnote, a paragraph, at most, in an exhaustive history of the U.S. We will survive Donald Trump. But, unfortunately, we must endure more of his intractable behaviors and shenanigans. How much more? A blip in the scheme of history, but a significant blip in an era of unbridled and unrestricted social media, conspiracy theories raised to the toxic level of truth, and fake news raised to a level of real news perpetrated by Fox “news”, “News”max, and One America “news”.
So, for the moment, we are saddled with the reality of a Donald Trump and friends such as Taylor Green, McCarthy, McConnell, He-Hawley, etc. etc. etc. It will change. And that change will occur through the action of voters like you and I, as long as trust in our election process remains intact.
Unfortunately, that faith and trust is weakening, and so our democracy is on the brink of crumbling. For what is a democracy if not the sacred ability of the people to choose its electorate? With dictatorships like China, Russia, Hungary, Afghanistan, Cuba, elections are a sham, decided in advance by the ruling party or leader. Rules and laws are also determined by the few loyalists to the leader or the leader himself. The Taliban now forbids girls from advancing their education, orders women to wear a full body veil, and bars them from holding government jobs. Stalinist Putin imprisons or has murdered those who actively oppose him. Xinping keeps his country’s people in a continual state of fear via the secret police and civilian informants.
As we’ve seen, Trump has similar inclinations, seeking revenge on all he deems enemies, weaponizing “his” Departments of Justice and Defense, and actively instigating a violent insurrection against the U.S. Government. He is a criminal, plain and simple. And we’ve only seen a preface to what will come if he, or any of his surrogates, is reelected in ’24.
But ’22 is still ahead, and Trump’s influence has been alarming in the primaries. So the lines are clearly drawn: Trump extremists versus Dems. It will not be an easy fight. Dems will need money, for with politics, money talks. Dems will need grassroots volunteers, for only volunteers can canvass neighborhoods directly, making eye contact with voters. And Dems will need voters to vote in record numbers, up and down the ballot to prevent the kind of results Republicans are crowing about will happen.
For if the radical GOP takes over either of the two Houses, they will stymie Joe Biden as they stymied Barack Obama, thus paving the way for a Trump run in ’24.
We can’t let that happen!
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