"Any Major Dude Will Tell You"
So how have YOU been? Enjoying the thinnest of veneers that is our democracy?
I've been thinking quite a bit about George Orwell lately. He was once called out for making lists of fascists/fascist-sympathizers, for which he was accused of acting in an Orwellian fashion. Of course, the gods of irony chortled mightily at that. In reality, he was engaged in a bit of dark humour, a parlor game really, where he shared his thoughts with friends on which prominent Britons (including journalists, etc...) might "go over" if the Battle of Britain had went the other way and Oswald Mosley or someone of similar pro-Nazi proclivities ascended to power in the UK.
Unfortunately, it would be all too easy to develop such a list in 2020, one utterly bereft of any whistling-past-the-graveyard winking or nodding. Republics tend not to fare well when right-wing militias, many protected by and/or involved with law enforcement agencies, prowl the streets and riot with impunity. And when a significant chunk of "middle America" openly sympathizes with authoritarian tendencies, it reminds one of the precarious situation that existed when the September '73 coup was launched against Chile's Salvador Allende.
Wait, but what of American exceptionalism? First, tell that to anyone (foreign or domestic) who was on the other side of the American power structure. Second, in the most - and perhaps only - honest moment of his entire blighted presidency, Trump himself uttered the following words when asked about his relationship with Russian autocrat Vladimir Putin: ""There are a lot of killers. You think our country's so innocent?" But unlike someone who wants to make our country better by actually adhering to the values we claim to espouse, we are saddled with an egomaniac who revels in being his worst, and America being our worst selves.
This is why I want there to be a system which would make it far more difficult for a Trump to hold and keep high public office. More on that later.
The point is that far too many people are willing acolytes of Trump and Trumpism. The election of Joe Biden is just one means of putting America on a better course. We also need to vote, and live, our values at the state and local levels. Thus, any candidate for office, partisan or not, who possess similar values to Trump simply cannot be trusted to protect the rights of Americans...or Marylanders...or Michiganders (again, I still prefer Michiganian). The people they oppress today might be you tomorrow. You think he really cares about you? You think his minions care about you? You think his deep-pocketed special interest funders care about you?
Rarely does anyone, does any nation, receive such an obvious second-chance as we are. Enough with the madness.
In the meantime, keep your head on a swivel and prepare for all contingencies. The next month is likely to be extremely nerve-wracking and rancorous. Keep your focus on the present while recognizing that all righteous efforts are designed to bring about a better future.
Be well. I hope to provide another post soon.