Sunday, December 20, 2020

We Can Do Better

                                                                                             written 13 December 2020

                                                                                         published 20 December 2020



            Sedition, a federal felony, is defined as "inciting revolt or violence against a lawful authority with the goal of destroying or overthrowing it."  Members of the Executive, Senate, and the House swear an oath to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic."

            Deranged want-to-be-king Donald has cheated and lied his entire life, made over 20,000 documented lies as president, never admitted making a mistake, never taken responsibility for his actions, and always insisted he is a winner.  Understandably, he has difficulty facing he lost.  He is within his rights to request recounts, but each recount confirmed he lost.  He is within his rights to make his case to court, but he has lost 56 of the 57 cases so far.  His complaints are so completely without merit, legal standing, or facts that his team has been admonished even by Trump appointed judges.

            His lawyers claim fraud in public, but in court admit there was no fraud.  Even Attorney General Barr has declared there was no fraud.  But Trump persists in claiming the election was a massive fraud and he actually won. Trump's actions edged toward sedition when he invited state officials to the White House, unsuccessfully pressuring them to throw out their state's election results.  

            Republican "leaders" collude in this sedition lie.  Despite election certification in all 50 states, only 27 of the 249 Republicans in the House and Senate acknowledge that Biden won.  This denial has convinced half the Republican voters that Trump won, and their response is increasingly belligerent. 

            Although state's rights used to be a Republican principle, Texas attorney general Paxton brought a Supreme Court case, joined by 17 other Republican states, to overthrow the election results.  126 members of the House joined this attempted sedition and should be held accountable.  The Supreme Court rejected the case unanimously.  In perfect irony, Paxton is under investigation by the FBI for securities fraud and misuse of his office for personal gain.  

            Through corruption and sedition, Republicans show their contempt for the idea that we all have a right to vote.  Americans are better than that.

            The progressive newsletter Hightower Lowdown usually discusses corporate capitalist corruption and the greed of the 0.1%, but the recent issue focused on what is good about Americans.

            "Most people are fundamentally fair minded, kind, and generous.  Decades of behavioral studies, recurring surveys, in depth conversations, cultural histories, and real life experiences, have by and large produced the same findings: the great majority of people are guided in their daily actions and relations by deep values of fairness and sharing.  The established order assumes people are at heart wicked beasts who must be constantly constrained, least we return society to kill-or-be-killed barbarity.  In fact, it turns out that humankind is overwhelmingly kind."

            "One of the most trying tests of civility is driving in heavy traffic.  Only 1 in 10 American drivers is oblivious, demented, incontinent with rage or obsessed with never being passed.  When faced with irritating, unexpected lane closures, the great majority of drivers slow, yielding peacefully to one another so they all get past the blockage in a timely fashion."

            "In an exercise to find out how people envision a "just society", participants were asked to draw up their ideal society, focusing on principles and structures that best served their own interests.  However, they were not to know who they would be in the society they designed.  Over and over, participants from every social status and ideology designed worlds with deep, broad egalitarian structures to ensure that the least well-off, most marginalized person would be treated justly.  After all, they might be that person."

            "Trump was raised to see only killers and losers, but the animal kingdom suggests a better route to winning is cooperation.  Some of the most successful species are not the strongest, but rather the ones that work together in a sharing society, building family and group homes, nurture and teach their young, share the available food, and mourn their lost ones."

            Last week the rains returned, the FDA approved the vaccine, the Supreme Court stopped Trump, and the Electoral College certified Biden as president.  Next week we celebrate the Winter Solstice and Christmas.  Here's to a joyous future.