Despite my deep issues and concerns with the incoming Donald J. Trump administration four years ago, I publicly accepted his election to the highest office in the land, and I encouraged everyone everywhere to do the same, regardless of their political persuasion. That’s how our democracy works. We have an election. Someone wins. We all move forward and lend our support to the victor. That’s the American way.
Now, here we are in January 2021, and we’re about to install a new president and a new administration in a week or so. Again, I encourage everyone to accept this reality regardless of your political leaning.
Last week, pro-Trump thugs seeking to disrupt the certification of the Electoral College results stormed the U.S. Capitol. Now the House of Representatives plans to impeach the president, alleging he is responsible for the violence in Washington, D.C. I am not an attorney, but I’m not all that convinced Trump’s speech at the Save America Rally, as horrible as it was, warrants this reaction by the House.
Radney Foster, one of my favorite songwriters, wrote in “Went for a Ride,” a song about the mistaken view we hold of the old West — “We told some tales/He told ‘em best/Real life can always/Use a good stretch.”
At the risk of aggravating all my Republican friends who might read this, the Trump administration clearly has taken this “good stretch” concept to new levels that strain my ability to understand or comprehend, beginning with the lies about the size of his inaugural crowd, continuing through the completely absurd on its face assertion, not only of the existence of but the validity of so-called “alternative facts,” taking the word of a Russian dictator over that of our own intelligence agencies and finally now we’re on to what’s been called “the big lie” — the “Stop the Steal” effort that led to the recent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.
To be sure, Trump and his cronies have offered allegation after allegation and conspiracy theory after conspiracy theory to support their rigged election claims, but no real evidence of massive voter fraud. Reasonable people must realize there is a reason why something like 60 courts have soundly rejected these stop the steal legal pleadings, including the U.S. Supreme Court. They’re presenting allegations, not facts. And it’s not that the judges don’t want to be seen as Trump’s puppets, as he alleges. All the Trump cronies want is a couple more days to gather and then present their “overwhelming evidence.” Please.
To me, this brouhaha is nothing less than the absolutely perfect coda to the Trump administration — even though I fear he may find a way to use his last few hours in office for something even more disturbing.
You see, it’s not just the president’s speech at the rally that set his indignant, insurrection-bent supporters in motion — rather this disgusting antidemocratic effort by Trump’s followers is simply the completely predictable result of the totality of his administration and his repeated rejection and attempted destruction of every single American institution in favor of leadership by him — an autocratic guy who claims to be smarter than everyone else, a guy who claims he’s the only one with the gray matter and insight to lead us forward and make America great again by returning to what — the days before Woodrow Wilson or maybe even Abraham Lincoln?
Why some have even called him the chosen one, for God’s sake. The truth is he began his run for office with the Obama lie and he leaves office with this stolen election fib. Lies upon lies upon lies, twisting and burrowing and boring in like thought-numbing mind worms through the conservative social media echo chamber. So, tell me true, whadya expect from Trump?
Hey. Don’t just take my word for it. Open your mind for a moment and consider my personal favorite false stop the steal allegation from the president himself regarding the “outcome determinative” challenges to the election results he offered his minions at his Save America Rally last Wednesday just before the launch of the insurrection.
“And more than 60,000 ballots in Pennsylvania were reported received back, they got back before they were ever supposedly mailed out,” Trump yelled. “In other words, you got the ballot back before you mailed it. Which is also logically and logistically impossible, right? Think of that one.”
OK, President Trump, I’m thinking … You’re asking me to believe county clerks in Pennsylvania are so corrupt and/or incompetent they either deliberately created such an impossible fraud and thought they could get away with it or they are so dumb they didn’t notice this preposterous irregularity when ballots they hadn’t yet mailed to voters began arriving at their offices to be counted? Again, I’m not an attorney. This isn’t a direct call to action at the rally, but I have to wonder — does delivering such an obvious falsehood to a rabid crowd of followers who believe this evidence proves the election was stolen from them qualify as instigating an insurrection?
You see, it’s not just this one rally speech to blame. Nope, it’s the whole stinking, rotten enchilada.
So here I am — stuck in the middle of an awful pandemic made worse because the president and many of his supporters allege it is simply a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese and those evil Democrats who just want to bring him down, those same child-molesting, cannibalistic, child-eating, baby-killing Democrats hunkered down in the basement of a pizza parlor who want to turn America into a socialist utopia and take our guns from us, engulfed by the threats and fears of violent events all across the United States and in Washington as the new Biden administration comes to power.
Ah, but let’s pause for a moment and contrast today’s protests with the first really big protest in response to Trump’s comments on the Access Hollywood tape — the Women’s March in January 2017. Big difference.
“You know, I’m automatically attracted to beautiful,” our classy leader said. “I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”
Don’t forget this bit of so-called locker room talk came just after Trump’s obscene, self-described desire and effort to seduce a married woman by offering to buy her some furniture.
It’s not too hard for me to imagine why millions of women all around the world took offense to these comments and empowered themselves by standing up to this kind of oppression and abuse. Surely you must remember all those women in their silly pink hats launching a flash mob rendition of MILCK’s “I Can’t Keep Quiet” during the Women’s March on Washington in January 2017.
We’re looking at two different kinds of people — one group filled with hate and another filled with hope — two different protests, each at the cusp of a new administration. I can’t speak for you, but it’s not too hard for me to pick the one I prefer. In one case, thugs tried to tear the house down. In the other, some ladies donned homemade hats, snapped their fingers and unabashedly sang their song right out loud.
Oh, and here’s a link to the flash mob version of “I Can’t Keep Quiet” recorded during the march —
— lest we forget the indelible spirit of our beautiful and strong American ladies. They still bring tears of joy, celebration and liberation to my eyes when I watch them sing this song. Even after all this time.
Despite Trump’s crudeness and his obvious innate inability to rise to the demands of the job as leader of the free world, we elected him anyway. We got our wish. Now we’re about to finally awake from our four-year long Trumpian nightmare. Frankly, I can’t wait.
May God bless America during these troubled days. I’m afraid we need that blessing now more than ever. May He help our divided land find its way.