Tuesday, July 14, 2020: Bastille Day

by ag

July 14 is Bastille Day in France, a holiday that celebrates a major turning point in the French Revolution. It seems an apt occasion on which to interrupt our regularly scheduled programming to speak of something infinitely more serious than photographic images.

Based on our history and comparatively high standard of living, I think it’s very difficult for most Americans, including myself, to fully comprehend the reality of having a madman in the Oval Office, one whose willful negligence and arrogant stupidity are sending millions of citizens to their sickbeds, and more than a hundred-thousand to painful deaths.

To vote this monster out of office in November is to give Trump the benefit of democratic and civilized norms that he’s been regularly trashing for the last 3 years. I’m not sure what the answer is but an election might be too late. This nation needs to do something commensurate with the scale of his malfeasance. Two hundred plus years ago, the French had a remedy that begins with “g” but that’s no longer an option.

One place to start would be for companies to stop advertising on FAUX News, the state propaganda outlet for spreading Trump’s lies. Twitter and Facebook should delete his accounts. Network news anchors and reporters should just get up and leave whenever a government spokesperson or GOP toady starts spouting crap. Mike Pence’s smarminess needs to bleeped.

Enough with the private asides that acknowledge how monumentally unfit Trump is for the presidency, especially during this period of unfathomable loss. It’s long past time to say these truths out loud. I’m looking at you, Republican congressman or senator, as well as former administration officials who still have an intact conscience.

We also need to hear from the bigwigs at major corporations, those who bring in the big bucks for exercising “leadership,” “vision,” and “competency”— one of the few constituencies perhaps that Trump cannot ignore. In this ever-darkening era, their concern for the bottom line, like the band on the Titanic, means little compared to the necessity of speaking out forcefully against behaviors that wouldn’t be tolerated for a nano-second in their companies. If executives like Goya’s CEO can’t tell the difference between a leader who unites a country and marshals all of its resources to fight the gravest of threats, and a “builder” who routinely stiffed contractors, defrauded banks and students, drove 5 or more businesses into bankruptcy, and carried that failing, corrupt legacy right into the presidency, they should go back to their planet of origin. Robert Unanue, you make the residents of Plato’s cave look like enlightened beings.

Americans cannot afford to be passive participants in this nightmare. Every sector of society must rise up and let those in power know we will no longer accept the disconnect from reality, ignorance, dishonesty, and unchecked narcissism that are Trump’s defining traits. The stakes are too high. The times demand that we take this country back, away from the precipice that gets closer and closer with each passing day.

As parents, we don’t allow two-year-olds to hold us hostage with their destructive tantrums. Why are we allowing this man-child to wreak havoc on on our families, friends, neighbors, and institutions?

Trump is a lights-flashing, alarm-sounding menace—as dangerous to the country as any lethal pandemic or foreign enemy. The sooner he is out of office, the more hope there’ll be for America and the world.