America takes a giant leap backward, 140 characters at a time

“Anything important is never left to the vote of the people. We only get to vote on some man; we never get to vote on what he is to do.” – Humorist and American commentator Will Rogers

*****

He is not a man of eloquence. His life appears limited to 140 characters at a time, which includes carefully studied sound bites. His choppy discourse often evokes a vulgar American exceptionalism, and he sprinkles it with downright lies. Still, his shortcomings may have been key to his victory this past November.He is not a man of eloquence. His life appears limited to 140 characters at a time, which includes carefully studied sound bites. His choppy discourse often evokes a vulgar American exceptionalism, and he sprinkles it with downright lies. Still, his shortcomings may have been key to his victory this past November. It enabled him to convince a minority of Americans (All he really needed in order to win; the country’s Electoral College considered more important than the people’s vote.) that he will “Make America Great Again.”

He is appointing the least prepared presidential cabinet of all times. It suits him well. They probably will be there more for show than action. He considers himself so smart… he has little need for daily intelligence briefings. As he has said, “I don’t have to be told ― you know, I’m, like, a smart person. I don’t have to be told the same thing in the same words every single day.”

The aforementioned quote the exact words he told Fox News: a Twitter-perfect 140 characters long.

As for the cabinet appointees… A secretary of education who knows nothing of public education and has demonstrated enough ignorance to criticize it. An attorney general, the people’s lawyer, who hates blacks, gays, and voters who might oppose him. As Environmental Protection Agency administrator, a man The New York Times described in an editorial as “someone to weaken clean air and clean water laws and repudiate America’s leadership role in the global battle against climate change…”  Then there’s a secretary of state who views Russia as a potential, very large oil field for his Exxon/Mobil friends. The list, of course, is longer, much longer. But one by one, what they might represent is ironic and cynical — words most likely not found in the president-elect’s vocabulary, but ingrained in his psyche.

He dangerously undermines the First Amendment. And in this country, there is good reason for that Amendment to come first.

He derides immigrants, and yet all his children, but one, are sons and a daughter of immigrants — whose papers, making them “legal”, we have never seen.

Women, he judges on a scale of one to 10… and the size of their breasts; his fat wallet and questionable hands entitling him to grope them.

He looks for the worst among us. And uses them to his benefit. Sadly, this past year, we’ve come to realize that there are still quite a few of the worst among us.

I always imagined the United States of America as a long, relay race where the baton is passed from person to person every four years; some who help us advance, others that slow us down and at times make us lose ground.

It is why I am terrified of the thought that today we turn the baton over to a man who feels entitled to his victory without much thought to the continued race. But most worrisome is the fact that we still hear from media, leadership, and everyday Americans that praise inauguration day for the greatness of a system that changes hands peacefully every four years. They refer to this as exceptional without giving much mind to whom they are turning over the keys to the kingdom this time around.

And the man sworn in today may be the one to put an end to that “exceptionalism” we brag about.

But saddest of all may be the fact that those who will suffer most under his presidency are many of the same people who voted for him — some because he espouses their bigotry, others because they expect him to change things. And all duped by the man with orange, combed-over hair.

Change is coming. Of that I am certain. It just may not turn out to be what his voters had hoped for.

God help us all.

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