Fire and Ice

 

Some say the world will end in fire,

Some say in ice,

From what I’ve tasted of desire,

I hold with those who favor fire.

But if it had to perish twice,

I think I know enough of hate

To know that for destruction ice

Is also great, and would suffice

-Robert Frost

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Six days until the presidential election, and there’s so much hate and anger, I wonder if our country is now a divided house that can no longer unite. I don’t think any candidates have ever been more despised than Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. I’ve never seen Americans be so spiteful and vindictive, and this election is being driven by hate more than by issues.

So I’m wondering what is going to happen next week after one of these two becomes the President-elect. No  matter who wins, there will be loads of unhappiness for about half of all Americans who will see the election as a disaster. What might happen after that is scary.

I believe the rancor is at a new level, perhaps a dangerous level. I remember how fearful I was when George W. Bush was elected, and many of my fears proved correct when Bush started a war based on lies and hundreds of thousands died, and again when he crashed the U.S. economy at the end of his eight years of mismanagement. But America survived Bush, and moved on.

As unhappy as I was with Bush, I never advocated for him to be violently removed from office the way some voices are already promoting. Yes, those may be radical voices, but the cries of “lock her up” and the seething  panic that Trump could use nukes are both the kind of extreme thinking that could lead to post-election tragedy.

In the past, whoever won the presidency was accepted. I’m not sure that’s going to be the case this time. At the minimum, I think whoever wins will be hounded, attacked, accused and harassed for the next four years. At the maximum, what could happen is grim, insurrection, “second amendment solutions,” and blood in the streets all seem possible.

I hope it doesn’t come to that. I hope there is enough civility and order left in our country to accept whoever is elected. For tens of millions of Americans, it won’t be easy, and I am one of those. I am ashamed to be a member of the same species as Donald Trump. I think he is an embarrassment to our country. I cringe to think  what he might do if elected.

But if is he is elected, I will accept the decision of voters and hope for the best. I will hope  he will rise to the occasion and be a better president than he is a person. I will hope that somehow the country will get through four years without suffering too much damage. I don’t want Trump to be shot or even thrown in jail. If he is elected, he is our leader, and I believe the country will endure his presidency.

If you hate Hillary Clinton as much as I hate Donald Trump, I hope you will accept the election results. You don’t ever have to support her, but don’t  believe her election is the end of the country. Don’t get sucked into thinking only radical  solutions can now save us. Whoever becomes president,  and however wrong it seems, we must guarantee that in the next four years our system of peaceful transition of power survives. That is far more important than the hatred for any one person.

 

 

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A New Low

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I don’t think I could forgive myself if I didn’t  speak up about this nasty presidential election that is unlike any I’ve seen. And I’ve seen a few. Harry Truman had just become president when I was born. Yeah, I’m old. The first time I voted for president was in 1968,  the year of the riots at the Democratic Convention in Chicago. It was Hubert Humphrey vs. Richard Nixon. I voted for Humphrey, and for the past half century, I’ve voted in every presidential election.

But I’ve never seen a campaign like this. I’ve liked and disliked different presidential contenders, but  until this election I’ve never feared that someone would be elected. But please God, I pray, if you exist, don’t let Donald Trump become the leader of the most powerful nation on the planet.

Donald Trump is a racist, a liar, an egomaniac. He’s a pompous boor, a con man, a vanity queen. I’m not sure he can tell the difference between reality and his own bullshit. He’s unfit to be a dogcatcher. He’s filled with hate, derision and bigotry for everything about America that isn’t white.

Here’s what’s even worse, that racism is still widespread enough in our country to propel him to the nomination of a major party. No, not all his supporters are racists, but they are a big bloc and without the support of racists, he wouldn’t be in this race. I mean, less than eight years ago when Americans elected the first African-American president, we had cause to believe that we had progressed against the forces of racism. Guess not.

The big ugly truth of this election is that racism is alive and well in America. When Trump started putting out his racist clarion calls directed  against Latinos, African-Americans, Women, Gays and even the handicapped, the racists came running. They’d been seething and fomenting for eight years over the indignity of having a Black president. They’re locked, loaded and white. Trump’s base is lily  white. None of America’s minorities support him.

Just hating Hillary is not a good enough excuse to vote for this monster Trump. You  have to be a full-on  bigot to back this blowhard.  I know Hillary isn’t the most appealing person to seek high office. Frankly, I wish the first woman president  (please, God, please)  wouldn’t have gained name recognition by being the wife of a president. But she’s smart, experienced and qualified. Three things that can’t be said for Trump. If Hillary lapsed into a coma tomorrow, I’d still vote for her, because the very idea of Trump being president is unthinkable. I’d vote for slime mold before I’d vote for Trump. His being a candidate is embarrassing. A Trump presidency would be disaster.

I’m truly disappointed we’re at this point in America. The rest of the world thinks Trump is a ridiculous clown. Sure, Putin and the Russians would love to see an idiot in the Oval Office. So would the Chinese, the North Koreans, and the Iranians. All our country’s enemies are hoping Trump gets elected. But that doesn’t bother his base, which is fueled by hate and conspiracy theories.

I think this is a crossroads in American history. We are now a multi-cultural society but a large portion of white people cannot accept the fact that they’re no longer in charge of everything. They want to take America back, like a hundred years back. In this election, we will either move forward by electing our first woman president, or we will return to the dark days of white supremacy by putting a racist in the White House.

 

Never, Never, Ever Give Up

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1919 – Walt Disney is fired from his newspaper job for lacking imagination.

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1926 – Lucille Ball is told by her acting  coach that she’s wasting “her time and ours.”

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1936 – John F. Kennedy runs for president of the Harvard freshman class,  and loses.

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1960s – Steven Spielberg is rejected by the film school at USC.

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1962 – The Beatles are rejected by Decca Records.

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1973 – Hillary Clinton fails the District of Columbia bar exam.

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1977 – Oprah  Winfrey is fired from her news job for being too emotionally involved.
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1985 – Steve Jobs is fired from the Macintosh division of Apple.th73JMV7IZ

1996 – J.K. Rowling is turned down 12 times for her Harry Potter manuscript.

Never, never, ever give up.