Two regular commenters, johnburger2013 and Alexander Cheezem, cross-posted their Facebook essays about the election on Ethics Alarms. Both are worthy Comment of the Day.
First, from johnburger2013:
A Facebook friend told me to let this go. However, I can’t, especially after reading countless postings about the end to the US as we know it. This post is most particularly directed at the person accusing me of white-male-entitled-complacency, who has never had to worry about storm troopers kicking in my front door.
Trump won. Clinton lost. This has been a long, painful, contentious election cycle, extraordinarily dividing the nation into bitter, blinded hemispheres with unbelievable and unnecessary bloodletting.
Yet, take heart. The US republic will survive. Will Trump be a good president? Who knows? Nobody. Got that? Nobody. Time will tell.
Give some credit to the citizenry. The US, for all of its past and present errors, has tried to live up to its mission to form a ‘more perfect’ union. It has constantly tried to right the ship and steer it away from the rocks. Hopefully, the thousand cuts inflicted by this election will heal and the nation will find itself stronger. I have read that a broken bone is stronger when it heals. Hope springs eternal.
To those lamenting and wailing that your candidate lost: Stop it. Please. For the sake of the nation. Just stop it. Trump’s presidency does not, and will not, lead to mass incarceration, deportation, or the building of ovens. The US is nowhere near where the Weimar Republic was in the 1920s. Nor is it anywhere close to pre-Mussolini Italy, pre-Franco Spain, pre-Chavez Venezuela, or pre-Morales Bolivia. And no, Trump’s presidency will not, under any circumstances, be a catalyst for religious reactionaries calling for pregnant women to be chained to the stove.
More particularly, stop hurling Nazi memes around. Nazi Germany led to unspeakable evil, targeting Jews for extermination. Do not, under any circumstances, diminish what Jews suffered under Nazi genocide by claiming that Trump and his supporters are one clothing store away from brown shirts. Do not tell me that my ‘white-privilege complacency’ blinds me to the realities of Kristallnacht. It is insulting and cruel. I am from the Cleveland, Ohio, area, which had a large survivor community. I saw the fear. I heard the stories survivors endured. Worst of all, I saw the despair in the eyes of ordinary people targeted because of their religion. I don’t need to experience first-hand what happened at Treblinka or Auschwitz to know that that is pure, unbridled evil.
Furthermore, I saw that Kristallnacht has been trending on Facebook, and, ironically, began on November 9, 1938. Believe, me, I do not support Donald Trump – I think he will be a terrible president (I hope I am wrong). However, I am disheartened and saddened that fellow citizens cannot put aside partisan differences. Reading Facebook postings comparing Trump to Hitler, and his supporters to the Schutzstaffel, is morally offensive, especially having known people who suffered through Nazi genocide, people forever scarred by the horror they lived and having to relive it every single moment they look at numbers brutally carved into their skin
Trump’s victory absolutely does not mean that minorities will be hauled back to plantations in chains, or marriages recently upheld will be obliterated.
As for Trump and his supporters: Drop the “Clinton-is-a-criminal” stuff. Your candidate won. Stop gloating. It is immature and unbecoming of the republic. Your candidate will take the highest executive office in the land. Demand that your candidate govern with the dignity, respect, and vision that office requires. Demand that he stop saying stupid things. Demand that he develop a filter and impulse control expected of the office.
Disagree over policy. Disagree over ideas. Disagree all you want about Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Bush or Obama, but they behaved in the manner called for by the Office of the President of the United States of America.
The US is a great place to live because of the liberties enshrined and guaranteed and protected by the Constitution. If we, as citizens, hold to true to those values, the nation will be a better place.
Now Alexander Cheezem’s Comment of the Day, on the theme of accountability, an Ethics Alarms favorite. I’ll have a brief comment at the end:
For the record, my first reaction to learning the results of the Presidential election was simply to be sick. I’m still nauseous. My first *emotional* reaction was fury.And no, not at Trump and his supporters. My fury was reserved for Clinton and the Democratic Party.
They had two responsibilities this year, and they bombed both of them. The first? To nominate a strong candidate capable of earning support from both “sides” and helping to heal the divides that have been created over the course of Obama’s presidency. The second? To put the welfare of the country — and the democratic process — ahead of their own petty games and self-interests.
They failed miserably on both counts. Hillary was one of the single least popular, and thus weakest, candidates in history — only Trump even comes close — and their conduct was openly corrupt to an extent that even I find hard to truly believe.
If they’d actually cared about this country more than their political games, they would have viewed things like *being under an active FBI investigation* as disqualifying. They didn’t.
If they’d been willing to put the democratic process ahead of their poltitical games… you know, I’m not even sure where to start, but the tipping point for me was when Hillary didn’t even wait a full day from when Debbie Wasserman Schultz was outed from her position as party chair for trying to rig the primaries in Hillary’s favor to hire her on to her campaign. More recently, there’s the Donna Brazile/CNN thing… which was also about trying to rig the election (or at least the debates).
So no, I don’t blame the Republicans for this fiasco. I blame the people who are supposed to hold the Republicans in check.
I’m back. I was especially grateful for Alexander’s post, as I was gearing up to post a similar themed essay. On November 8, 2012, seriously nauseated by hearing Rush Limbaugh announce that Obama was re-elected because “There’s no way to win when the other side is about giving away free stuff” and Mark Levin was calling the “low information” American Voter an idiot and worse, I wrote post called “Accountability Check: Blame Yourselves, Conservatives.”
This one would have used “progressives” instead of “conservatives,” and the details would have been different. The ethics message, however, would have been the same. The post concluded:
“The fact remains, however, that Democrats would not be in power if the Republicans had been competent, honest, dedicated, trustworthy, and responsible. I don’t want to hear Newt Gingrich, Mark Levin, Rush and Laura Ingraham impugn the American people for being hesitant to trust this crowd again—not until they demonstrate that they recognize and acknowledge their own failings, and accept their fair share of accountability for the disaster that is growing before our eyes.”
Just change the names, my friends.
Just change the names.