For a long time, I didn’t discuss political issues here or on Twitter but I ended that policy last fall. Failing to object, to protest, the actions of the new administration constitutes failure as a citizen of the United States. Silence is consent — and I don’t concede to any of this.
Here is my understanding of the latest transgression undertaken by this administration:
Yesterday, the president signed an illegal executive order that effectively bans immigration from certain countries on the basis of religion. The executive order affects countries that are predominantly Muslim, but does not include those Muslim countries in which the president does business, for example, Saudi Arabia, source of most of the 9/11 terrorists. The order affected not only refugees, but also green-card holders including those presently serving in the United States military. Immigrants just arrived in our country, with legal paperwork that took years to obtain, were stopped at customs.
The ACLU, along with other organizations, immediately called on the courts to intervene, and they were successful in part, getting an order to release those being illegally held at airports. Some were released. Then reports surfaced that some Customs/Homeland Security staff refused to obey the court orders — an illegal act — saying they would only obey the president. This is how government works in a dictatorship, not here in the United States of America.
All of this seems to have been done with two purposes in mind:
(1) to further split the American public between those who want a law-abiding government loyal to the Constitution, with checks and balances to limit the power of each branch so that our freedoms are not compromised and we do not wind up living under a dictatorship, and those who, in the words of the president himself, would continue to support him even if he stood in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shot someone.
(2) to distract from the ascension of alt-right icon and White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon to the National Security Council, while removing both the the director of national intelligence and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff as regular members.
Here is a statute defining who can be on the NSC. Note that the Chief Strategist is not included, and that those who are need to be vetted by the Senate. A question I would like answered: Does Bannon have a security clearance?
This is but a small part of the damage the president has done in his first week in office.
American democracy will only survive if the American people want it to. We are rapidly sliding toward dictatorship. Everyone of us who fails to object is, by their silence, consenting to this dictatorship.
An excellent essay by Eliot A. Cohen calls this “a clarifying moment in American history.”
For the community of conservative thinkers and experts, and more importantly, conservative politicians, this is a testing time. Either you stand up for your principles and for what you know is decent behavior, or you go down, if not now, then years from now, as a coward or opportunist. Your reputation will never recover, nor should it.
Make no mistake: What you are witnessing now will comprise a major chapter in history classes in the future.
What can you do? Call your Congressional representative and your senator. Talk to their staff about specific issues. Let them know you will not stand for the corruption of the American system of checks and balances. Demand that they take specific action to protect our Republic. Demand that they begin impeachment proceedings to remove this vile and dangerous man from the highest office in the land.
Be vigilant. Be persistent. Stand up for your country.
This is the symbol of the resistance: