Letter 2 America for February 11, 2021

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Dear America,

The equanimity with which Republicans dissemble is troubling.  For example, I heard an interview with a Republican Trump supporter in Georgia in which she stated her intention to continue in her support for Donald Trump.  When asked why, she said that he was going to get her rights back for her.  But when the interviewer asked which rights she was referring to, she paused for a moment and then said, the ones we are entitled to, obviously having no idea whether she had lost any at all...or if so, who took them.  Then today on the news, NPR played a recording of a Republican politician saying that the impeachment was motivated by Democratic fear of running against Trump in the 2024 presidential election, though Trump again in 2024 would most likely guarantee four more years of a Democrat in the White House.  Apparently he wasn't deterred from spouting such a preposterous idea by the fact that Trump has lost the popular vote both times he has run before, and in 2020 he lost the electoral college by the same margin that he declaimed to be a landslide when he won it by that margin, as he claimed he had done in both of his popular votes despite losing by nearly 3 million in 2016 and 8 million in 2020.  On the first hand, the problem is that apparently conservative Republicans will believe anything that they want to, no matter how implausible.  And on the other hand, Republican politicians don't seem to know the difference between truth and fiction and will spout the latter if it serves them.

The reason that all this troubles me is that with an electorate so eager to be fooled by a mountebank and his minions, the possibility that they will one day ascend to power hovers over us like the sword of Damocles.  And the irony of all this is that when Hamilton, Jay and Madison defended their constitution in the Federalist Papers, the electoral college and The Senate, which was originally intended to be filled by those sage pillars of the community that the state legislators chose, were supposed to be our armor against populist tyranny.  The drafters of the constitution feared a populist demagogue who might dupe the people of this country into acceptance of internecine politics.  But now, the electoral college has allowed not just W. to become president despite being rejected by the majority of voters, it has allowed Trump to do so as well, though the electoral college did protect us from Trump the second time it was called upon to do so...albeit barely.  

All of this puts me in mind of a couple of homiletic ideas.  First, when God came to Abraham to tell him to get his loved ones out of Sodom and Gomorrah because he was about to destroy the cities with all who were in them, Abraham bargained with God and finally settled with The Lord on ten men: if Abraham could find ten righteous men in the cities, God would spare the multitudes for the sake of the ten.  We all know what happened to Sodom and Gomorrah, which evokes this question for Republicans to ponder: can the party muster 17 good men to avert destruction of the party.  And then there's this.

Donald Trump was beaten convincingly in two popular votes.  And in four years, if the Republicans are still the captives of the Trump conservative movement, the likelihood isn't that they will reap electoral glory for the party in 2024 because even in the states where they made legislative gains this time, Trump lost ground.  So if they continue to be obliged to leave their soles in Trump's control as they have for the past four years and Trump continues to be more and more popular but with fewer and fewer voters, what will be the fate of the party he has captured mind and spirit.  With regard to the 17 good Republican men and women needed to end Trump's grip on the American ethos, such as it has become, how many of them want to run with Trump on their backs, and have to pay with their prospects of getting into heaven for the privilege?

What I think, America, is that enough Republicans will see self-interest in getting Trump out of politics that they will see the prudence of convicting him.  In other words, principle will have nothing to do with how the Republicans vote, and lack of principle is right up their ally.

Your friend,


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This page contains a single entry by Michael Wolf published on February 11, 2021 3:49 PM.

Letter 2 America (and President Biden) for January 22, 2021 was the previous entry in this blog.

Letter 2 America for February 22, 2021 is the next entry in this blog.

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