The Election of Trump: One year out

6 11 2017
I VotedIt was my Facebook memory photo – the “I Voted” sticker I wore a year ago, when a portion of America sent Donald Trump to the Oval Office.  I wasn’t excited to see it when it popped up in my Newsfeed, because as far as I’m concerned, November 8, 2016 will go down in history as one of the saddest days in our nation’s history.  And the picture was nothing but a reminder of what had occurred; so it began stirring up all kinds of anger, all over again.
It also got me wondering . . . about my written responses to the election of 2016.  I posted 4 blogs the week following what I still refer to as a ‘national tragedy’, and I began wondering if I had perhaps overreacted to the election?  Several people told me to ‘chill’; and to remember that our democracy is much bigger and stronger than the person who resides in The White House.  Were they right?  Christians told me that I was being too hard on Evangelicals.  Was I?
I had certainly wrestled with those questions at the time, but the picture got me thinking about what my words would feel like a year out, twelve months after the election.  
So decided to re-read the posts.  And surprisingly, I decided that I didn’t overreact at all.  In fact, if anything, I had grossly underestimated the significance of what occurred on that beautiful fall day.  And I don’t think I’m alone.  
Latest polls reveal that two-thirds of Americans disapprove of the job President Trump is doing; half “strongly disapprove.”  Moreover, Republican Senators Bob Corker, Jeff Flake, and John McCain have sided with George W. Bush and Mitt Romney, as well as Ohio Governor John Kasich, and begun expressing their grave concerns over both  the direction in which the President is seeking to lead our country, and perhaps more seriously, the way he is seeking to do it.  His constant lies, irresponsible tweets, inflammatory sound bites, and downright ignorance of world affairs, have put our nation in a precarious situation – one which at the very least has caused us to lose whatever respect Barak Obama had garnered for this country around the world, and which at the very worst continues to move us closer and closer to the brink of nuclear war with North Korea.
Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Thomas Friedman has stated that two of the most significant challenges confronting the world today are climate change and globalization. And the current administration denies the former, and is unwilling to accept the later.  The President continues to normalize his racist, sexist, homophobic, and xenophobic perspectives on American ‘greatness’; and whether criminal or not, the number of ‘Trumpers’ who have been working in and with Russia at a variety of levels should, at the very least, concern us all.  We have one of the most uniformed cabinets in history, and countless government positions and ambassadorships remain unfilled.
Now lest anyone is inclined to think that such remarks are partisan, let me be clear by once again saying that nothing about Donald Trump is partisan.  And fortunately, that is becoming clearer and clearer to more and more people: which is why I continue to speak up and speak out.
As I indicated in my final blog dealing with the election, my intent has never been to criticize ALL Republicans, but to simply challenge the words and agenda of a branch of the GOP that was, and remains, extremely dangerous, destructive, and deceitful; as well as the leader of that branch of the party for his hateful, dishonest, disrespectful, and arrogant behavior.  Matters of integrity, wisdom, and leadership are not Republican or Democratic issues — rather they are qualities that should be of concern to everyone!
So why am I writing about this again?
Well first, because it’s Election Day.  And everyone who recognizes the evil of current political trends in our country – trends which reflect nothing less than an unGodliness that cannot be allowed to persist – must be addressed in the voting booth.  So get out and vote: and do so for candidates who are willing to stand up to and against the current agenda.
Second, I contine to write and speak up because we all need to be continually reminded that the Jerry Falwells and the Franklin Grahams of this world are NOT the mouthpieces for God, NOR do they speak for everyone in the Church.  Thus they need to be challenged: boldly, regularly, and loudly. 
And finally, I continue to write to encourage Church Leaders to, in the pattern of Jesus, courageously address the political issues of our day.  I know that many are, in spite of the repercussions; so this is simply to encourage you in your ministry.  And if you are in a church where this is happening, be sure to thank and encourage your pastor.  If you are in a church were this is NOT happening, and if your pastor and those in leadership are afraid to say that ‘Black Lives Matter’ or that misogyny is sin, then you need to leave . . . and you need to do it ‘bigly’!  It’s time to find a new Church!  
Friends, resistance works.  Pussy Hats are empowering women to stand up to abusers and to run for office.  Rainbows are bringing together gay, straight, trans, and queer people in such numbers that we will never allow anyone to ever be put in a closet again.  And People of Color, along with their allies, are beginning to force communities to deal with the white privilege and supremacy that has been tormenting the American soul for decades.  
Yes, these are dark days for America.  But people, communities, schools, neighborhoods, and places of worship are coming together in new ways; and this American tragedy will NOT last forever.
So be strong and courageous.  Resist and vote!  Speak up and speak out!  The greatness Trump touts IS coming; but in ways none of us ever imagined!  

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3 responses

7 11 2017
Barbara Cotter

Thank you Bob

7 11 2017
Marilyn Warren

Amen and Amen, Bob!

8 11 2017
Eric Stockhoff

And last night’s elections in VA and NJ signal the discontent of the very people who were misguided in last year’s Presidential election. Go New Democrats! Just approach civil service with care for your neighbors and constituents.

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