Our Republican Democracy, created by our celebrated Forefathers, the new and radical dream of citizens living a principled and secure existence in individual equality, liberty, and the freedom to pursue their personal aspirations, has demonstrably been threatened, like never before. Excluding the period of the Civil War and the subsequent, shameful, era of Reconstruction, it has not been under such existential, threat.
The two elected terms of President, Barack H. Obama, a paragon of capability, rectitude and dedicated intelligence, gave us some temporary assurance that the American voter had matured in judgment and appreciation for what is universally understood to be “The American Way.” Under his administration, the Nation prospered and continued on its steady progress on the path to the rectification of its historical shortcomings, in civil rights, in reforms concerning economic and tax equity, educational opportunity, health care, empathic programs for the needy, and an enlightened appreciation of education and science, including the recognition of the dire scientific warnings of global warming.
The shocking elevation to the Oval Office of Donald J. Trump, an undereducated, ignorant and egotistical, former second rate, T.V. game show host and real estate gonif, was the unfortunate result of an unholy confluence of, educated voters who did not like Hillary Clinton, and so, did not vote, Trump’s demagogic, pie in the sky, false, promises to the undereducated, reductionist and discontented portion of the population, and the unlimited, enormous financial backing of anti-regulation, sociopathic, big industry, (shamefully, enabled by the undemocratic decision of SCOTUS, in “Citizens United”). The unexpected election outcome turned out to be disastrous, not only to our Nation’s continuing success and its traditional status, as the powerful and just leader of the free world, but, as it came to be revealed, the existence of the Democratic Republic itself.
We will not yet again, breathlessly, detail the facts of his publicized, immoral, and embarrassing behavior of this miscreant President. His neurotic arrogance, his bigotry regarding minorities and women, his cruel and repressive immigration policy, on behalf of a Nation composed completely of immigrants and their descendants, featuring the breaking up of families and the caging of the separated, young children, his revealed bribes, to cover up his many wrongful assignations with prostitutes, his serial mendacity, his attacks on the media and free press, his disparagement of science and learning, his resultant denial of scientifically established global warming, as well as the advent of the present pandemic, the latter, resulting in an enormous number of the infected and the consequent, substantial loss of life, his blatant violation of the Constitution’s emoluments prohibition, illegally, enriching himself and family from his office, his complete ignorance of history, foreign affairs and treaty agreements, making our country the laughingstock of the world, his blind, his egotistic friendship with our traditional enemies, contrasted with his enmity for NATO and our historical friends and allies, his anti-environmental stance, including his refusal to sign the International Accords, and denial of global warming, his recent pardoning and commuting sentences for criminals, with whose crimes he was, in fact, evidently implicit. The foregoing is not a complete list, but there is need to get to our salient theme.
The existence of a miscreant, like Trump, incapable of office but capable of the performance of such wrongful acts, would certainly provide more than ample justification, to vote against him, and for his opponent, Joseph Biden, (who, in contrast to Donald J. Trump, has the requisite attributes, moral responsibility, and respectability, intelligence, experience as Vice -President, (under that exemplar of good governance, Barack H. Obama, and as a legislator), together with a sincere empathy for the needy citizen. But we digress; our titled theme, speaks, not in terms of a Presidential election, but an existential American referendum.
The defeat of the autocratic self-worshipping, Donald Trump, is no less than consequentially imperative, for reasons we deem, by comparison, yet more profound, than the preferable election, of his far superior, opponent, Joseph Biden. In our view, this is not simply, another quadrennial, popular selection of an American President; at stake, this time, frighteningly, is no less than the fundamental survival, of the now, singularly, precarious, democratic American way of life, itself.
Any cursory student of World History is familiar with the etiology, the presenting symptoms, and actualized presentment, of the grim pathology of autocratic fascism. We need to look no further back in history, for example, to the 1930’s Weimar Republic of Germany. After a demonstrated history of centuries of xenophobic warfare, Germany was able to morally evolve, at last, to a legitimate democratic government. The “Weimar Republic” featured, a publically elected head of State (the Chancellor) a Parliament (the Reichstag), and a Judiciary. Newspapers and radio were independent and free.
Germany, at the time of the Weimar Republic, found itself in severe financial straits, due to the worldwide (“The Great”) depression, and, relatedly, began to experience severe unemployment. As shown by 20th Century history, a previously, unknown uneducated, psychoneurotic and despicable egomaniac, Adolph Schikkelgruber, a/k/a Adolph Hitler, employed his singularly, great talent as a demagogue, to, very successfully, delude great numbers of the discontented, disgruntled and unemployed German population, with promises of a better and more prosperous Germany. He set about attacking the newspapers, and radio media, burned books, rounded up and imprisoned all critics, divided and completely polarized the population, set group versus group, championed an exclusively, white, Christian Germany, imprisoning and murdering many millions of Jews, gypsies, homosexuals and the disabled. Hitler used the German military (martial law) to eliminate political opposition, organized the black shirts and the brown-shirted, militarized children, to spy on family and neighbors, destroyed free speech and right of assembly, despised all foreigners and eliminated immigration, denigrated all science and learning except for military purposes, glorified strength and deprecated weakness, and murdered many disabled people, prosecuted intellectuals, and appointed racist and ignorant people as officials and military officers.
If there were, in existence, a reference book entitled,” The Joy of Autocracy,,” (analogous to the culinary guide, entitled, “Joy of Cooking,”) Donald Trump has not violated any of its suggested recipes. He has polarized the Nation, attacked the free press and media, has, as a demagogue, made snake-oil promises about a “better America,” encouraged racism and the hatred of minorities, mocked the handicapped and disabled, encouraging prejudice against dissenters, homosexuals, he has deprecated education and learning, including the findings of scientists on global warming, expressed utter disdain for “liberal intellectuals,” adamantly opposed all foreigners and immigration, has, in dictator-like, style, used martial law by sending private, armed soldiers to quell peaceful protests against racial homicide, by municipal police, has encouraged foreign countries to engage in interference with the vote, has, in an autocratic fashion, even expressed doubts as to stepping down, in the event of his loss at the coming election.
Trump has faithfully adhered to the historically successful, textbook recipe, for a Weimar style, replacement of our traditional liberal democracy, and must be halted in his despotic tracks. This November, more than a selection of a President is at stake; It is clear that the first Tuesday in November, will be a referendum, as to the public’s desire to maintain its cherished rights under our Constitutional democracy, or suffer the steep political decline to an autocratic form of government. The American voter is mandatorily, obliged to recognize the fundamental, crucial, and determinative significance of the coming election; in reality and empirical effect, a public referendum on the continuance of the American way of life.
Because of its ultimate, great existential significance, we are concerned but remain optimistic.