Right now is our time. For months if not two years, we’ve thought and worried about the upcoming November 8th election. And right now might be the last chance we have to influence the outcome and to vote. Right now, our future is created. Right now, our wishes, needs, and dreams can be recognized, or our worst fears realized. In some states, early voting has begun. In Georgia, for example, it begins October 17. If we act now, we can help secure the immediate future we need and hope for.
We all know this. The choice before us is both wonderful and dreadful. We have the opportunity to advance and protect our rights and the workings of law and justice, to protect our loved ones and community. To protect our natural world.
On the one hand, Democrats have worked for our interests, not always as well as we’d hope but as much as we could expect considering the nature of their opposition– considering that so many in the GOP are still lying about the election that Biden clearly won. Democrats made mistakes, but so have we all. They’ve passed some of the most important legislation in decades, to protect our health, environment, jobs, education. And they’ve done this even though much of the press refused to emphasize the good they’ve accomplished, the gains made by Biden, in terms of protecting labor and making healthcare more equitable.
On the other hand, besides perfecting the bald-faced lie, the GOP are firmly the party of autocracy if not White Nationalism. They cry about freedom, but want the freedom restricted for themselves. They oppose⎼ voting rights for all, choosing who we will vote for and having our vote counted; they oppose protecting the right to make health decisions for our own body, deciding if and when we have children, who we will marry , if we will have clean air to breathe or a climate that sustains human life. They oppose allowing us to decide what we will read and if we can afford to go to college.
The GOP, as signaled by Justice Thomas in the Dodds decision overturning Roe v Wade and overturning established legal precedent, threatened to destroy marriage equality and even the right of access to contraception. They talk about rising inflation and problems in the economy and try to blame problems their policies have helped create or worsen on President Biden. They opposed the Inflation Reduction Act en masse, after years of failing to create or pass any positive, meaningful legislation of their own when they controlled Congress, yet the states they control take the money provided and try to claim the benefits as their own, the coming jobs, infrastructure improvements, reduction in prescription drugs and healthcare. In 2017, they reduced taxation on the rich and have consistently worked to increase the sickening and unsustainable wealth gap. When taxes on the rich are lowered, economic threats rise and the rest of us are forced to make up the deficit. According to the latest Federal Reserve data, the top 1% of Americans hold more wealth than the lowest 50%.
Always remember, and bring this to the voting booth: Autocracy means only one person, or group is free⎼ and DJT is all about himself and rule by himself alone. For the rest of us, the vast majority of us, autocracy means oppression; it means the end of the rule of law and possible incarceration without due process. It means the whole vehicle of political and economic power is driven by the interests of only one person or group and they can run over the rest of us as they please. When you have no political power, all your power and freedom is curtailed.
Autocracy means living in fear and surrounded by hate. This is one reason why DJT and many GOP have supported Russian disinformation about Ukraine and the 2020 election. They want to unite with fellow oppressors and have become soldiers for autocracy. Putin knows he can’t defeat the U. S. with arms, so he is trying to destroy democracy with lies.
So right now, we must do all we can to get access to the news and get out the vote. Democrats, if we support them, have a good chance of keeping or even increasing control in the Senate but the House is clearly threatened. We can give financial support to, or make calls for Democratic candidates, or write cards to voters in our own neighborhood, not only for Congress but for a state’s Attorney General who can control how votes are counted. We can work as poll workers to ensure a fair and safe election and counter the GOP push to entrench those who will do their bidding and undermine the election. We can work to protect journalists and get out truth. [The links* provided in this paragraph provide ways to take action.]
During the DJT years, anxiety in the US increased dramatically. Trump Anxiety Disorder became a major psychological problem. Then the pandemic happened and anxiety increased even more, especially in Black, Hispanic, and Asian-American communities. Just before the 2020 election, anxiety increased and then decreased after President Biden was elected, although levels are rising once again.
Acting to win the election of candidates who will work in the interests of Democracy and for most Americans not only improves the chances of creating the political system we need, but of reducing the fear and anxiety many of us feel.
*Please consult the links above; in the first paragraph if you want to find the dates for early voting in your state. Or in the third to last paragraph, to find ways to help GOTV and elect Democratic candidates. Some GOTV campaigns are ending this week.
***This blog was syndicated by The Good Men Project.