Featuring essays by Elizabeth George on the future of our country


Nancy, Joe, and Chuck: destroying America

It should be noted that I'm never quite sure who is getting these emails because of the way I send them out. I am a Luddite and must deal with the attendant ignorance of all things technical and internet-oriented. If you receive something from me that you do not like, I'd like to suggest that you simply delete it. You can read and then delete. Or delete without reading. If you email me in return and rant about receiving a message from me and demand that I remove you from "my list," I must tell you that I have no list and thus am not able to remove you from that which does not exist.

My last email dealt with a suggestion that political pundit and activist Paul Begala has made both during television interviews and within the pages of his new book. Some lucky few of you were also sent an article written by a political historian that was featured in Rolling Stone Magazine. Essentially, it was exploring the demise of US greatness and the inevitability of this demise beginning in the aftermath of World War II. It was a chilling read that rang chillingly true. One response to the combination of this article and my email came from someone who referred to either the email or the article as "comical relief" and went on to declare that Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, and Chuck Schumer were intent upon destroying America. Since among them, Nancy, Joe and Chuck have a combined 121 years in Congress, I wondered why they have waited so long to destroy America, especially since they are of an age at which they might not have much time to revel in its destruction.

On another topic entirely, I've been thinking about the people who have faithfully voted for Republican candidates for their entire voting lives, and I've been considering what it must be like for them in this election year. I have always voted Democrat, since my first vote in 1972. I have never knowingly voted for a Republican (some races being non-partisan), and I hope I never have to as so far in my 48 years of casting votes, they've never come up with any proposal that I've found appealing. However, millions of people have voted for them and have voted in very good faith and I was thinking about what it must feel like right now: faced with the choice of Donald Trump or doing what they can hardly bear to do: vote for the Democrat. I thought about what that would be like if suddenly I were faced with a decision in which my alternatives were 1). not to vote at all; 2). to vote for someone who has declared he will cut social security and medicare and who so far has no other solution in mind for the troubles that face us; or 3). to vote for the Democrat.

I end up in my thinking at the same spot every time. We are fighting to save a Democratic Republic. Within our vote we are declaring ourselves in favor of a Constitution that is upheld by those who swear an oath to uphold it and not to violate it. Within our vote we are declaring ourselves as supporters of the Bill of Rights.

We would be naive in our voting if we believed that the election of Joe Biden as President would "fix" things. It's my belief that these broken things are almost irreparable. But the key for me is that word almost. It gives me a modicum of hope for the future. The future holds the possibility of health care for everyone, quality education for everyone, college and university education for everyone, a passion to address climate change, a willingness to explore differing forms of energy, environmental protections, voting rights, ending racism in America, ending misogyny in America, giving women right equal to those of men, giving LGBTQ individuals equal protection under the law and rights equal to everyone else's, the resurrection of America's standing as a global leader in science and technology, a commitment to the arts, and a reform of our electoral system. These shouldn't be pipe dreams. This list I've concocted should not result in the declaration of "Move to Finland, if that's what you want." Why? Because not one item on the list is beyond the realm of possibility.

Frankly, I feel beaten up and depressed in this, the fourth year of Donald Trump's tenure in the Oval Office. If he has done great things for this country, I do not know what they are. If he has great plans for the next four years, I do not know what they are either. Because of this, I'm going to follow the possibility offered by a Biden Presidency. Biden offers me that: possibility. As of this writing, Trump offers me nothing. Actually, he offers me less than nothing as my health insurance is medicare, and he has already indicated that's on the chopping block.

Elizabeth George


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