Monday, July 3, 2017

Does that banner still wave?

Fox News, in its inimitable fashion, has pinpointed what Americans should be thinking about this Independence Day. In an article today headlined, “Stars, stripes, and suds: Where to drink this Independence Day,” the author, Katie Jackson, gleefully tells us that July 4th is “America’s biggest drinking day,” with guzzlers spending more than $1 billion for beer alone. Katie opines that, “Any bar worth its weight in margarita salt is hip to this spending trend, and goes out of its way to celebrate Independence Day.”

Well, I hate to throw cold water on Katie’s beer, but I won’t be so much celebrating Independence Day this year as reflecting on it’s meaning, and in my reflections wondering how we find ourselves with someone like Donald Trump as President, and how we can free ourselves from his deceitful, destructive, potentially disastrous rule.

It isn’t just the President’s rule that we must resist, of course, but also the agenda of a Republican Party that sees itself in charge of both houses of Congress, and dominant at the state level, with 33 governors and 32 republican-controlled legislatures — legislatures in which the GOP has majorities in both houses. Democrats and their progressive base find themselves in a deep hole, and the consequences have been rapid in developing, with the repeal of the Affordable Care Act only the most egregious — I almost said “visible”— of those consequences.

As Richard R. Beeman has said, we have been so successful, “in building a powerful and cohesive democratic nation-state in post-Civil War America that most Americans today assume that principles of democracy and national harmony somehow naturally go hand-in-hand.” They don’t. We are beset by challenges internally and externally, seen and unseen, imminent and inevitable.

And all the while, we are ruled by a man with no moral compass, whose only objective is to “win” — win against his enemies, his critics, and his personal demons. His weapons of choice are insult, innuendo, threat, fear, and anger, and, like a terrorist, he wields them with disdain for any collateral damage he may cause.

This Independence Day we are fearful for our Republic. We do not accept Mr. Trump’s refusal to abide by the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution, we do not accept Mr. Trump’s defaming of the FBI, we do not believe the Press is “the enemy of the American people,” we will not allow our personal voter records to be easily surrendered to an autocratic regime. We will resist, and in the end, we will, working together, overcome a tyrannical despot and keep our Republic.

O say does that star-spangled banner yet wave 
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

No comments: