The Folly of Hope

Trump exposed all our fault lines due to systemic racism, class exploitation and greed. His initial election and very close re-election should act as a clarion call for us to enact sweeping and lasting social change.

“We can disagree and still love each other. Unless your disagreement is rooted in my oppression and denial of my humanity and right to exist.” –James Baldwin.

Now that the election is over and it becomes more and more clear that Trump’s feigned concern about ‘voter fraud’ is simply the preview episode of his new reality show featuring nepotism, greed, grift and corruption, I vow to stop paying attention to this very small person who has occupied my blogspace for the last four years. At some point in my process, I had turned my ire away from Trump and toward his enablers.

Trump is not the all-powerful, baby-King that the media (including the Liberal media) has puffed him up to be. Is Trump racist? Perhaps, but in my opinion, Trump has no organizing principle or long-term, sustained goal. His level of extreme narcissism makes him only concerned with himself. Case in point, his brother died while he was in office and nothing. His wife and two of his sons have Covid-19, no response. The lyrics of one Arrested Development song put it this way,

Most of the persons follow the serpent
Cause the serpent preaches all for self
But why follow someone in search of something
When you’ll get nothing
Serpent’s all for self

Trump is all for himself. One of his lasting legacies is our willingness to lean into this selfishness and lack of concern for others at the time when beating Covid-19 involves a collective sense of responsibility.

Trump has no agenda, but his Puppet Masters do. And even when he is gone, they will still be around. This election exposed in a raw and unrelenting way, how many people in positions of power feel like people of color simply do not have the right to vote. Old-timey voter suppression was subversive and coded in flowery language; this year, the GOP pulled out every trick in the book and at the end of the day just blatantly advocated for throwing out all of the votes in largely minority counties (or at least remained quiet while others said the quiet part out loud).

Trump exposed all our fault lines due to systemic racism, class exploitation and greed. His initial election and very close re-election should act as a clarion call for us to enact sweeping and lasting social change.

As a Progressive, I find Joe Biden significantly inadequate for the task at hand – so I’m going to be hard on him for a moment. [Before you get at me understand this – Whereas, Republicans are a party of lockstep; Democrats are and have always been a ne’er-do-well, rag-tag collective of street fighters. Joe knows that.] I do not like this stance of ‘forgive and forget’ – aka “bringing the country back together.” Nor do I think we should have spent so much energy trying to win back the hearts and minds of those who held their noses through all of Trump’s rhetoric, policies, law-bending actions and broken promises. The Democratic Party walked past so many better qualified presidential candidates, with creative ideas – who were inspiring to our base – to elect a man whose platform is centrist and apologetic. At the end of the day, I may be wrong. Maybe something palatable enough for rogue Republicans was the only path to victory. Time will tell where all of this compromise and acquiescence will lead us.

As far as I am concerned, Trump-ism needs to be destroyed at the root so it won’t have a chance to regroup and come back stronger in 2024.

I was bent out of shape by the idea that a good portion of our country still enjoys “The Trump Show” and wants him to do this for four more years. And then we won! And, magically that thought didn’t bother me as much. I like that our political pendulum swings from Republican to Democrat and back. If everyone gets a chance to vote – I respect the outcome (even if I really don’t like it). I have been saying for four years – this situation is beyond racism and beyond political “sides” – Trump is a lunatic, who is only concerned with himself. He was a dangerous and reckless president. My only hope is that many of those who did vote for Trump again did so more out of a support for the Republican Party than for this insanity. Truly, their lives are going to be much improved in short order.

They’ll see it!

Songwriters: Todd Thomas / Todd A. ThomasWashed Away lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Be safe out there – G.A.

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