Thanksgiving is almost here and that signals the official start of the Holiday Season. It’s traditionally a time of family, friends and fun. It’s a time of giving, being thankful and feeling joyful. All of this is part of normalcy during this time of year. It is what we have come to expect and it is all predictable. However, the election changed all of that. It was only two weeks ago and the implications of what has happened are only gradually sinking in. The loss of the senate, the house as well as many state houses and state legislatures is just part of the impact. They will only ease the facilitation of policies and initiatives coming from the White House. What has begun to become clear is that the man who is about to become the occupant of the White House is like none in the history of this country, and this Holiday Season will not feel normal as we begin to understand the challenges that we face in the new year.
Trump has been true to his words and behavior from the campaign. He continues to show disdain for the press, uses the law to his convenience and adheres to his most extreme rhetoric. Thus far his appointments are consistent with his xenophobic, misogynistic and racist views. While he continues to utilize Twitter to voice his opinion, he avoids the press, using reporters only to record the continual parade of cabinet and White House staff candidates coming to see him. The press has been denied its rightful place and the opportunity to be present and report fairly and objectively on the events occurring within the Trump transition and ultimalty presidendency. While many have voiced concern regarding the conflict of interest issues raised by his worldwide business entanglements and holdings, he has ignored these concerns and acted with total disregard. The attendance at a meeting between Trump and the Japanese Foreign Minister by his daughter and son-in-law was extraordinarily inappropriate. His meetings with businessmen from India at which potential business dealings took place raised questions of legality. He has raised the possibility of appointing his son-in-law to a White House advisory position which would ignore a 1967 anti-nepotism law. Most of the names raised for possible cabinet or White House appointment are of major concern. One name raised, that of Mitt Romney, was a surprise. However, I believe that if he is nominated for the position of Secretary Of State it will be because Trump feels the need to place a normal face before the world as he continues to implement policies that would be contrary to that reality.
Trump’s behavior, his associations, his rhetoric, his contempt for the press, his international business entanglements and his casual attitude towards the rule of law should begin to make it clear that we are not dealing with a normal President-Elect. We are dealing with a very dangerous, narcissistic, and uninformed leader. His short attention span, love of flattery and lack of curiosity make him uniquely vulnerable to manipulation. This vulnerability endangers all of us both nationally and internationally. We cannot believe ourselves safe only because he his targeting a group that we are not a part of. If one group is targeted, we are all unsafe.
We cannot allow ourselves to feel that what is happening to our country is normal. As much as we want to move back into a place of equilibrium and feel that everything will be ok, we can’t. Things will not be ok again unless we actively prevent Trump and his legions from achieving their goals. We must get up off of the couch and away from our computers and take to the streets every time the opportunity presents itself. We must open our wallets to Planned Parenthood and the ACLU to make sure that they can continue to provide service and fight for our Constitution. We must write an avalanche of letters to our local, state and federal representatives and officials and make sure they know we are watching and that we demand that they do their jobs and protect our freedoms and rights. We must talk to our family and friends to help them understand the serious challenges that our country is facing. It is up to us to make sure that Donald Trump and his haters fail and that we take our country back from the precipice.