Trump’s Greatest Challenge & Flaw
Statistics provide a clear picture of who we are as a people. Many Americans have taken the right of voting for granted. In 2016, 250,056,000 Americans voted, which was only 55.5% of eligible voters. That’s a strange statistic for a country where more than a million people have fought and died to protect the right to vote. Why do so many not take that privilege seriously?
In 1964, only six percent of African Americans voted, but after the Voting Rights Act of 1965 more Black people voted. By 1969, 59 percent of African Americans voted. According to the Pew Research Center, the Black voter turnout rate in the presidential election of 2016 declined for the first time in twenty years, falling to 59.6% after reaching a record-high of 66.6% in 2012. That seven percent decline from the previous election is the largest on record for Blacks. One could conclude that neither Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump were attractive to those voters, or perhaps African Americans felt they had a sure win with Obama in the race.
Another statistic that cracks right between the eyes is 38% of those in Congress are millionaires. Startlingly, that’s not much different from the first years of the American government. The flatly stated theory goes like this; let the rich, white, planter-plantation owner class protect their business interests, and everyone else will be fine. Sadly, there’s not much difference today.
While Trump stirs up dust about Twitter and Facebook taking down his lies and misinformation they feel will hurt their subscribers, more people are dying of COVID-19 infections. While Trump is passing along stupid QAnon conspiracy theories and lies, there are people in Georgia and other states waiting eight hours in sprawling, hot lines to vote. How can any of us believe we are a great country when one of our political parties works so hard at voter suppression? They openly state their belief that when fewer people vote they do better. What is the difference between Republican actions to suppress voting and ballot burning in a third-world country after all the citizens have voted? Any US citizen involved in vote suppression, regardless of their place in society, should at least be charged with voter intimidation.
Trump sees the electorate through the filter of his belief that the American public will believe whatever he tells them. Remember, he said he could shoot someone in the middle of New York’s Fifth Avenue and wouldn’t lose any supporters. Maybe Trump feels he must react to some of the “fake news” that has been published about him. But in reality, this guy has no credibility pushing back because he’s stuck in a ad hominem loop. He truly believes all negatives about him are untrue, therefore, even when the other guys tell almost truths about him, no one on the Democratic side believes him. He’s the boy who cried wolf so much, no one is really listening anymore.
Probably emboldened by Trump’s successful fight with COVID, the West Wing is now pushing the B.S. that “everyone is going to get the virus.” It’s the same “herd immunity” idea Dr. Atlas dumped into Donald’s defective brain months ago. Our President now says, “See, it’s not that bad. Get back to work and reelect me.” What about losing the lives of two million people? “We are just going to have to live with it.” To a young person, the fact that they are still living is an invitation to party recklessly.
The flaw in Trump’s thinking is that people thoughtlessly do what he says. All his supporters shouting and screaming arm to arm at his rallies won’t get sick and die, but maybe some of them will come to their senses when they or a loved one starts to violently cough while gasping for air. Each false step, each tragic error, forces another crack in Trump’s armor.
The reality Trump must now confront is the wave of voters who are NOT going to stay at home. We already know that more than 15 million people have voted, and more than 60% of all mail in ballots were cast by Democrats. Trump made so many amateur mistakes as an incumbent. He could have embraced mask wearing from the beginning and air dropped millions of MAGA masks into swing states. It’s too late now. He politically over-positioned mask-wearing and the result could be many of his supporters too sick to vote.
Another junior achievement Trump ploy was getting his donor-lover-boy Louis DeJoy to disrupt the United States Postal Service in an attempt to sabotage mail in voting efforts. The overweight, orange pumpkin did this while fomenting distrust by saying the process of mail in ballots is ripe with fraud. If true, why did he make no effort to fix the problem? He is the most impotent president of all time if he can’t stop a pervasive fraud.
It’s impossible to apply logic to the actions of Trump and his grifter-enablers in Congress. They are all broke-dick cult followers and failures as patriots and people. It takes a whole nation to be a whole nation, and despite Trump’s position of needing walls to have a nation, what we truly need are voters to save our democracy. As many as legally possible. Maybe I am naïve or over-optimistic, but I believe the 2020 election turnout will be larger than ever. After the election, I want to start a campaign against the hypocrites who have too much power over us. I will be writing letters to suppress not only their voices but their Congressional votes.
The book that tells it like it is…
Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs: If you only read one chapter of this book, try “Take a Knee for America” and think about our never-ending conflicts between minorities and the police. I’m not asking you to take a stand but having a deep and honest conversation about why some people think the way they do would be productive. This is a book for the moment which seeks to start a conservation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”