Wednesday, November 16, 2016

A Russian Dissident Ought to Know

[Excerpted from Masha Gessen, A Russian Dissident linked below] --  
"Donald Trump has promised to ban Muslims from entering the country and deport millions of people. He has threatened to loosen protections for freedom of speech and punish the press for criticism. He has boasted of committing sexual assault and said women who obtain abortions must be punished. He wishes to revive torture as an acceptable tactic, force the military to commit war crimes, and imprison his political opponents. The Trump we have seen so far is a vicious, vindictive, unhinged autocrat with no respect for the rule of law. He is a Putinesque strongman whose party controls Congress and, soon, the judiciary.

We live in dangerous times. Already we have seen a huge surge in the persecution of the very minorities whom Trump and his supporters target. Thousands of people—gay, trans, female, Hispanic, Muslim, Jewish—have been subjected to violence and harassment based on their identity in the wake of Trump’s victory. Angry, hateful people have been emboldened and empowered. This moment is unlike anything most Americans have experienced before. No, there will not be gas chambers. There will probably not be internment camps. But death squads? What else to call the work of police forces who, freed from Justice Department and judicial oversight, increasingly militarized and unconstrained by constitutional limits, can make the killing of Freddie Gray look like a practice run?

Clinton owed it to her supporters to warn them of this impending collapse of the norms fundamental to a liberal democracy. Instead, she acted as though the election of Trump was business as usual. It wasn’t, and it’s perilous to pretend otherwise. Yes, Trump is “our president,” in the sense that he won the election. But recognizing that fact does not require us to buy into the fantasy that his inevitable lawlessness will be legitimate. We should steel ourselves for a ghastly new era of violence and repression, ushered in by the consolidation of power around an autocratic maniac and his pathetic enablers. As Gessen admits, this may sound hysterical. Maybe it is. I’d like to think I’m wrong. I do not think I am."

My Comment: She is 100% correct and as a Russian dissident she ought to know. Trump is a maniac demagogue in whose hands we placed the life of our democracy if not the life of the nation. To say that we must resist is an understatement but I will say it anyway. WE MUST RESIST by any non-violent means necessary!

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