It’s Been a Dark Day

I was just finishing up my blog post this morning when I saw the news. Trump supporters were massing in front of the Capitol Building. Oh, great, I thought. Here we go. I don’t like to see Trump protesters massing. They are openly angry. They yell. They carry guns. They drive big trucks waving big flags. Overcompensating? Sure. Meant to intimidate? You bet. I worried, because I follow politics. I know how incendiary Trump and his sycophants have been lately.

But we all have the right to protest.

Suddenly the news shifted. The “protesters” (can they be called that now?) had broken into the Capitol Building. I watched in horror, tears in my eyes, as Lisa Desjardins of PBS reported from her hunkered down position behind a barricade while Capitol Police tried to clear the area. I messaged my kids. Are you watching the news in DC? Text messages started popping off like fireflies. My kids, my friends, everyone was horrified.

I continued to watch Lisa Desjardins, who was reporting again as she was evacuated into the basement hallways with senators and representatives. Relief flooded through me when I realized they were safe. But how could this happen? How, in our nation’s capitol, were our public officials not more protected?

Back to the news. The questions began. “Will you still vote to oppose certification?” A senator or representative started blaming the Democrats, if they hadn’t opposed this president… if they hadn’t resisted… we wouldn’t be where we are today. Lots of whataboutism. Yes-buts. Yada-yada. Garnering irritated eyerolls on my part.) All the while, Judy Woodruff kept her calm demeanor, reiterating that the issue had already gone to court. That the states had already certified, There was no widespread voter fraud.

Over the course of the day the whataboutism died down. Trump’s responsibility in all of this ramped up. Someone somewhere in the basement must have found a backbone. As of 5 PST, they seemed nearly ready to throw him to the sharks. Well, it took long enough.

In all this, I have to say that I’m grateful to the Republicans who never stood by this terrible person, the Never Trumpers. I’m grateful to the people of the Lincoln Project. I’m grateful to any and all Republicans who saw Trump for who he was, who walked away, and who didn’t stay silent. I’m grateful to Mitt Romney, with whom I disagree with on just about everything it seems except the importance of honoring your integrity and your faith. I cringe to think what might have happened with any pushback.

Some things I heard and saw throughout the day are things I never thought I’d see in my country.

  • People storming the Capitol, rushing the Capitol Police inside the building
  • People in MAGA hats who had just broken in wandering blithely through the Capitol like they were tourists on a tour
  • That “protesters” managed to get in the Capitol
  • An American flag coming down and a Trump flag being raised in its place
  • A traitorous confederate flag being waved in the halls of Congress
  • Senators lying on the floor and hiding behind barricades because there were guns in the building

I hope this is a wake up call for people who have supported this madman. I hope that somehow they can extract him from the People’s House ASAP. I don’t think we’ll make it another 2 weeks.

Today has been a dark day. May tomorrow bring a new dawn.


(Bright spot – If we do make it to the 20th, Democrats control the Senate! Bye-bye Mitch! Thank you, Georgia voters!!!)

PTSD

So, who watched the debate?

My son told me they talked about it at a work meeting this morning, where it was described, aptly, as a sh*#show. I told him I felt that by watching I had volunteered to be flogged. He didn’t watch. He’s better about self-care than I am.

I’m curious how anyone can support Donald Trump. Each time a scandal comes to light, each time he gets up on stage and spews his hateful, divisive rhetoric, I think that will be the end of his support. I wake up to hearing the same excuses, rationalizations, and justifications for his abhorrent behavior. My neighbors on three sides have Trump flags flying. At this point if you are still a Trump-supporter, I’m questioning your humanity.

“Nice people made the best Nazis. My mom grew up next to them. They got along, refused to make waves, looked the other way when things got ugly and focused on happier things than “politics.” They were lovely people who turned their heads as their neighbors were dragged away. You know who weren’t nice people? Resisters.”

― Naomi Shulman

It was torture watching our bully president rage over both moderator Chris Wallace and former VP Biden. His whole demeanor was aggressive and mean. He repeatedly name-called and dehumanized democrats by calling us crazy, left-wing liberals. This democrat (me) is a human, with a view that you should help others and be a good steward of both money and natural resources. Come over for coffee sometime. I’ll show you my garden, such as it is. You can meet my dogs. They are sweet. I’ll tell you about the peaceful protests I’ve attended, what they’re really like and what prompted me to go. What name-calling and depersonalization do is to make someone the other, to make him/her less than you. It’s the first step toward being able to commit atrocities. Don’t think I haven’t wondered who’s coming for me.

During the debate, Trump got personal. It was awful hearing him steamroll Joe Biden and dismiss his son Beau in order to smear Hunter. I thought Biden had a classy parent comeback. He acknowledged that Hunter had dealt with his drug issue and that he was proud of him. What a great dad! Those boys had to be dealing with a lifetime of trauma after losing their mom and sister. Their dad did everything he could to alleviate their suffering, but nothing can make up for that. Some of us are more resilient than others.

If you want to see the fruit of the tree, turn the spotlight on the Trump kids, none of whom were wearing masks during the debate, in direct violation of the rules set by the venue, showing at the very least a contemptuous lack of respect.

Joe Biden is not a perfect candidate, but he has what it takes to lead this country. He’s not going to be a cult figure. We don’t need any more of those. He does have experience. He knows people, and knows people who know people. He has experience on the world stage. He knows how to form coalitions, and he understands that shows of force and belligerent attitudes don’t push our country forward. He will hire experts and defer and delegate. This, my friends, is leadership. Getting on stage and yelling the loudest is not.

Please vote blue. We desperately need a reset.

Side note: In looking something up, I found that there’s a whole Wikipedia page devoted to Trump nicknames. This grieves me. This man should not be leading our great country.

What Will You Do, Democrats?

I’m exhausted. I know I’m not alone. There’s been a constant barrage of norm-breaking, lies, and corruption from this administration. It’s easy to feel outraged. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Every day it seems there’s a new story. More chaos. It’s so easy to feel powerless. But we’re only powerless when we give up our power.

So do something small.

Wajahat Ali posed the question on Twitter, what will you do, Democrats? The responses ran the gamut. Hold them to account. Take to the streets. March on Washington. I agree with all of those things, but realistically, I won’t be doing most of them. I will count on my own elected officials to hold them to account. I won’t be flying to Washington. I may hit the streets, masked up and with my sanitizer in my pocket. But one thing I can do is help my local democratic group. Starting Friday, I will be filling out cards and mailing them. Old school, as my kids like to say.

Ponder the inspiring words of Kamala Harris in her VP acceptance speech at the DNC.

So, let’s fight with conviction. Let’s fight with hope. Let’s fight with confidence in ourselves, and a commitment to each other. To the America we know is possible. The America we love.

Years from now, this moment will have passed. And our children and our grandchildren will look in our eyes and ask us: Where were you when the stakes were so high?

They will ask us, what was it like?

And we will tell them. We will tell them, not just how we felt.

We will tell them what we did.

Kamala Harris

What will you do?


P.S. In 28 hours after Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away, Democrats raised over $90 million. This was thrilling news.

Speak with your feet in the street and shout with your credit card out.

2020, Are You Done Yet?

“Fight for the things that you care about. But do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”

― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

So, how’s everybody’s year going?

It’s been so hard to write anything coherent lately. (And by lately, I mean the past few years.) I have issues with anxiety, and these past 4 years have had me quite stressed out. I know I’m not alone.

It’s not just having Trump in the White House. It’s also knowing that people I care about are supportive of him despite his despicable character, his atrocious policies, and what seems to be his determination to be our Dear Leader for life.

I know I don’t do myself any favors by constantly updating myself on the latest scandal or misdeed of this administration. It’s all consuming because it’s so important. If mental energy were votes, Biden would have a clear path to the White House.

As it is, I cling to every Republican Voters Against Trump video and every whistleblower, thinking that this is the one that’s going to tip the balance. I thought it would be child separation. I was wrong. I thought it would be his abysmal response to COVID 19. I was wrong. I thought it would be his real view of our veterans. This seemed to push a few more people away from him. But this is a cult, and as with any successful cult, people are stuck in it by fear and righteous indignation and can’t be simply peeled away with logic and good sense.

And as if things couldn’t get worse, our fighter on the Supreme Court, Ruth Bader Ginsburg has passed away. It has been about 24 hours since I heard the news. This seems to be my breaking point. I had hoped against hope that she would fight it out to the election, to the inauguration of a sane president Biden, and to a little retirement before cancer got the best of her.

But cancer is a bitch. Cancer doesn’t care about the state of the world. It doesn’t care if there is a mobster in the White House. And it certainly doesn’t care about the plans a diminutive powerhouse of a woman.

RBG fought the good fight – for us. Now we need to pick up the banner and continue the fight – for her.

Upon the news breaking, there was a swirl of seemingly immediate political talk of replacing her with a conservative justice. I had to turn it off. I can’t take it any more. Can’t we even have 24 hours of political radio silence? Can’t we give her that respect?

I found it interesting that she passed away during Rosh Hashanah and what that symbolizes.

Think about her sitting on the court these past 3 1/2 years. Despite her age. Despite cancer. What will we do to carry the fight forward? For starters, it wouldn’t hurt to give to the cause. I’m donating a dollar for each year RGB sat on the Supreme Court. That’s only $27, but if we were to all give $27, we just might make a statement. Won’t you join me?

https://secure.actblue.com/donate/bidenharris2020

Let’s light a candle for RBG. Let’s have a moment of reflection and remembrance. Let us all to take stock of what’s at stake right now.

Then vote like your life depends on it.

I’ll leave you with this.

““When I’m sometimes asked when will there be enough [women on the Supreme Court] and I say, ‘When there are nine,’ people are shocked. But there’d been nine men, and nobody’s ever raised a question about that.”

― Ruth Bader Ginsburg