The defiant support given to Donald Trump by his supporters leads us to wonder where all this came from. I suppose it is superfluous to point out that good government does not create revolution and insurrection. And logically, we go on to say that it is bad government that provokes them. So what has been America’s source of bad government in the last generation or two.
The contradiction to my statement above is interesting, in that it has been Republican insurrection against good government that we have been witnessing since an African American man was elected president. The attitude of obstructionism in the Republican Party was based strictly on racism, imparted to the rank and file by elder Republican officials whose racism was so ingrained that they simply could not abide a black president. The first efforts of Republicans was to veto the election with the Birther movement – in which Donald Trump played a large part -and then the Tea Party movement went from tax protests to following the old Republican white men and their bigotry.
But as the Obama Administration carried on with the efforts towards improvement in American life, you would have thought that the opposition and obstruction would have ebbed. But it did not; racism in the Republican Party is such that Obama could do nothing that merited cooperation. It was not based on performance; it was entirely produced by the racism of Mitch McConnell and his odious cohorts.
You need only look at special elections featuring the likes of Pauline Hansen, who displays herself in a Confederate flag (with her arms provocatively raised to showcase her bustline) and promises to be loud and proud in whatever form of stupidity she chooses. And in a truly stunning non-issue (even for Republicans), Fox News demands to know if Lady Liberty – yes, that Lady Liberty – is a trans man in the artist’s secret concept of our statue. (Just so you know, Lady Liberty was originally conceived as an African American woman with broken chains on her feet. That was later modified to another face, which most historical accounts attribute to the artist’s mother. So that’s that.)
With this concept of government prevailing, for many reasons, it has come about that the American people are angry right now. The promises that Republicans made while they shoveled out money from the Treasury and gave it to billionaires have not been fulfilled – surprise, surprise. America is approaching the conditions of the Third World, and the standard Republican response – it’s Obama’s fault – is about to become obsolete. It’s going to be at least a couple of years before you will be able to pin anything on the next president, and if you try it, you’d better have your facts straight, because she’s going to be touchy about baseless accusations.
George W. Bush crashed the economy and then handed it to President Obama, smirking all the way back to Texas. Republicans mounted a fierce assault on voting and elections – redistricting, suppressing the vote, purging voter lists – and have managed to stay in office while they raped and pillaged both the Treasury and the American people, turning to women and the LGBT community to persecute. Last week I read a headline on one of the op-ed pages, “I smell a landslide.” We shall see about that.
You see, the American people are right to be angry at their government. In fact, I must ask: what did they expect? What did they expect when they passed these voter-suppression laws, or the Mississippi law that has just been reversed in court? Making a war on women, to say nothing of looking the other way when conservative terrorists murdered medical personnel and bombed clinics, has brought its aftermath. If the Republicans are waiting for bouquets, they will be surprised when women vote overwhelmingly blue in November.
Donald Trump will not solve any problems as president because first of all, he will never be president. His toy campaign will not survive the convention, and this year’s action in Cleveland will be juicy. There will be a Republican candidate when the dust settles, but either Trump is going to give it up and admit that this was all a bizarre example of performance art, or he will insist on running as a broke independent. And he can’t afford a third-party campaign.
It is not time, as Eldridge Cleaver wrote, to dynamite the log jam. A government is not a mass of trees in a river. We need that landslide of Vote Blue politics and a clean sweep of Republicans out of Washington. It won’t go that far, but for Republicans to lose both the House of Representatives and the Senate is possible. And with the antics of Trump and the loud, proud, stupid conservative candidates and officials, it is getting more possible every day.
Meanwhile, our world has lost a great moral leader. I mourn the passing of Elie Wiesel. And by the way, it’s easy to contact me. Just check in with my Facebook page.