Treating Each Chance to Vote as Our Only Chance to Vote: When to Remember, When to Forget

We want to forget the painful, the frightening, the disturbing, or usually we do. Sometimes, we hold on to what hurts as if the immediate pain could stave off what lies deeper. Sometimes, we just don’t know what to do.

 

And sometimes, we can’t forget for other reasons. It has seeped too far into who we think we are. Or the pain or discomfort helps us act, so we think we can’t allow ourselves to forget. But how do we learn from pain without hurting ourselves even more, and without making ourselves sick? Sickened, yes. But not sick.

 

Many of us so want to forget DT. It has been an amazing relief to not see his face or hear his ravings on tv. But we can’t forget the crimes he committed or the vulnerabilities he exposed in democracy. He and his GOP supporters are doing all they can to force themselves back into the headlines, to get us to focus on our fear of him returning to power instead of the desperation in his efforts to manipulate media and politics to prevent arrest. The list of possible crimes he has committed and possible criminal and civil litigation is extensive.  It is largely up to us to determine how and what we remember.

 

For example, he is planning to re-start MAGA rallies. His GOP never let the “Big Lie” die and are doing all they can to resuscitate it. We remember how DT tried to steal the election from President Joe Biden by falsely claiming the Democrats had stolen it. Most of us saw this live on tv. To distract us further, he and his GOP minions spouted disinformation from Russians claiming Democrats were in the employ of communists.

 

Now, the GOP are saying the insurrection attempt on January 6th never happened. On May 12, during a House Oversight Committee Hearing, GOP Representative Andrew Clyde said “the House floor was never breached.” “To call it an insurrection is in my opinion a bald-faced lie,” he continued. “If you didn’t know that TV footage was a video from January the sixth, you would actually think it was a normal tourist visit.”

 

He, with the support of most of the GOP, are attempting to turn the “Big Lie” into an ugly reality. Remember, the goal of “The Lie” was to crown DT as the Savior-King and deny political power to the majority of Americans⎼ deny the right to protest and the vote. According to the Brennan Center for Justice, in 47 state legislatures, the GOP have introduced 361 bills to restrict and suppress voting, despite no evidence of voting fraud.

 

Of course, they tried this before, just minutes after it happened. They feel they have created an unscalable propaganda wall and their followers will never try to scale that wall and hear, remember, or believe the truth. And they try to eliminate anyone who stands in their way. Remember how they treated conservative Liz Cheney for speaking truthfully about January 6th or how they tried to intimidate Democrats and other government officials.

 

But we remember that if the GOP win, we lose. No justice, no peace….

 

*To read the whole article, please go to The Good Men Project.

The President is Sick

Reports tell us DT is sick with COVID-19. After he disdained and lied about it for 10 months, it is not surprising that he now has to face those lies. I don’t know when (or if) he will recover or how he will try to spin his illness, or even if or how badly he is sick.

 

But if he or his followers try to use the illness to feed some narrative of martyrdom, we must remember it will be a martyrdom that he executed on himself. Or if he continues to claim the virus is no big deal, “Don’t be afraid of Covid,” or that, due to his sickness, “I get it”– we need to remember who he is and that he does not get it.

 

If any of us have forgotten, he:

 

Saturday morning, I was listening to Scott Simon on NPR’s Weekend Edition. He said it beautifully:

 

“There is so much suffering in America now. More than 200,000 people have died in this pandemic, tens of millions of people are out of work, and lines of people waiting for food stretch across this famously abundant country. Millions struggle just to keep going, as the list of aides and admirers who have been close to the President recently and tested positive grows almost hourly.

Maybe President Trump’s diagnosis, and that of so many around him, can remind Americans, in a way his denial has not, that the coronavirus is real. It won’t just disappear. We have reported on the lives of so many people who have died in this pandemic, and each time you grieve for a good life lost, and the hole they leave in so many hearts.

The president will get the best care possible. The American people deserve the same.”

 

We do deserve the same. We also deserve the truth. We deserve a President who cares for the people of this nation and cares for the democracy that he took an oath to protect. But DT is not that person.

 

Although his illness has captured media attention and distracted many of us from his disastrous debate performance with Joe Biden, his failure to pay income taxes, etc. polls have so far shown that a majority of the American people recognize the threat DT poses to us all. He has been losing in the polls since the beginning of the campaign, but the debate put him further behind. And polls taken since his illness have shown that a people tired of and angry at his malignant myopia are not so willing to give him the sympathy he expects.

 

In a now infamous quote, in 2016 DT claimed he could “stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue [in New York City] and shoot somebody” and not “lose any voters.” He was that confident in the support of his base, and crass and uncaring enough to brag about it. Well, now he is responsible for thousands of deaths, through his malignant refusal to listen to scientists, to care about others, and to act responsibly to fight the pandemic. I hope the American people care enough to hold him responsible.

 

Reports say he is sick, and I am sorry if he has the illness, but he has been sacrificing people to his own greed, and contributing greatly to making the nation physically, psychologically and politically sick for years. As I wish for his recovery from the coronavirus, I also fervently wish for the nation itself to recover from him⎼ and overwhelmingly vote him out of office.

 

What Do You Do When There’s a Bear in the House? – Getting the Grizzly of Ignorance and Malignancy Out the Door

Last night, in a dream, a black bear was somehow in our apartment. We were a bit freaked and didn’t know what to do. I had an idea of opening the sliding glass doors so he could get outside. Of course, we don’t live in an apartment and we don’t have any sliding glass doors⎼ but it’s a dream. After I snuck around the bear toward the doors, I realized our dog, about the size of a Lab, was asleep by the doorway and I feared waking him. I didn’t know what he would do. Then the bear noticed the dog and jumped up on top of the bookcase near me. By the way, we also don’t have a dog, although I have been wanting one.

 

Suddenly discovering we have a bear in our home would definitely constitute a dramatic change in our daily routine. But a black bear is one of the smaller, less aggressive bears. I always thought they were cute until I saw the mangled mess one of them made of our bird feeder. But let’s imagine it was a grizzly in our home, a truly dangerous creature. What then?

 

And we do have a dangerous creature in our homes now or are afraid of one. Or afraid of two. There is a meme going around that we are faced with two pandemics, COVID-19 and ignorance⎼ the virus and the ignorant, incompetent and malignant response to it by DT. Most people facing a bear in their dreams, or awake, would hopefully avoid panic and open that door, push the dog out of the way, and let the bear out. But right now, many of us are afraid and feel powerless and don’t know how to get the grizzly out the door. But maybe we can simultaneously take care of ourselves  as we take care of our world.

 

The Pastor Martin Niemoller wrote a prose-poem just after World War II about the Holocaust. Many of us know it. It was a confession of how German intellectuals and the Church stood by as one group after another was murdered by Nazis. “First, they came for the Communists, and I did not speak out because I was not a Communist… Then the trade unionists…then the socialists… then the Jews…Then they came for me.” The Nazis were the grizzly in the house of the Germans and instead of forcing the grizzly out, they invited it to stay. And millions were killed.

 

Today, DT is acting with almost as much evil as the Nazis, and the GOP is supporting what he does. But about 52% of us or more are quite aware of the malignant grizzly in our nation. Almost three years ago thousands, or hundreds of thousands spoke out when the GOP tried to end the ACA and destroy our health care system. We demonstrated in the streets and Congressional offices and called Congress. And we stopped that legislation. Of course, the pandemic greatly limits what political action we can take today to oppose him. But how many of us are calling Congress now?…

 

DT wants us to forget and feel powerless. We can’t give him what he wants. When we don’t act, we feel burdened by what we don’t do. When we act out of care and compassion, we feel strengthened. We protect not only ourselves but others. We push the grizzly of ignorance and malignancy out the door.

 

To read the whole post, go to The Good Men Project.