Mourning in America

My father owned a small linens business that was destroyed by NAFTA, despite his appeals to several presidents about the deleterious effects it would have on businesses like his.  It was ironic, then, that he died on the day Trump announced the new trade deal with Mexico and Canada. 

Whenever I would worry that this country was in a death spiral, he’d reassure me that America was resilient.  It had the infrastructure of durable yet flexible institutions to meet the changing demands of our nation and a tenacious population with a can-do spirit that could survive nearly any political debacle and surmount any challenges from within as well as from without.  It was a nation that demonstrated it could grow beyond its worst mistakes and be an even brighter beacon to the world. 

When Barack Obama came to power decreeing his administration would fundamentally transform this country, my father was skeptical.  As that transformation began to unfold amid assurances that the arc of history would bend toward justice under Obama’s leadership, Dad became pessimistic.  Before he slipped into the childlike bliss of dementia, he was convinced that America could not survive Obama’s onslaught from within and the vulnerability to nefarious outside forces his policies would cause.  My mother regretted that her grandchildren would inherit a dysfunctional country.  Her only solace was that “she wouldn’t be here to see it happen.”

I have felt a sense of dread since my father passed away.  It’s as if my connection to the days of America past has been severed and the future I’d normally focus on, looks bleak.  But it’s not just me.  Conservatives seem to tapped out; unwilling to fight as they did during the Tea Party years.

And yet we are attacked on all fronts on any given day just as we were during the Obama years. It’s overwhelming.  It’s exhausting. It’s hard to know how to respond. It’s enough to get through an election, throw some money at a few candidates, maybe stuff a few envelopes or debate a few friends.  Who has time to write, call, tweet, or demonstrate?

The midterms gave us something of a bittersweet victory, tempered by the threats of endless battles under the leadership of Pelosi, Waters, Schiff, and Nadler.  Pelosi took impeachment off the table long enough to win the House.  Waters complains about Republican dog whistling as she herself whistles for her battle dogs to harass and protest.  Schiff is like a dog with a bone when it comes to undoing the presidency.  And the incoming Chair of the Judiciary Committee Jerry Nadler very publicly shoots his mouth off about his impeachment strategy, while on a train.  This is hardly the judicious temperament required for such a position.  Were he a Republican, Democrat hoodlums would be protesting in front of his house braying that he is not up to the task.

Close elections in traditionally red states are being upended with mystery ballots popping up out of the ether.   And it’s all being done with Democrat cries of “count every vote!”  But we know Democrats don’t care about integrity.  Lying, cheating, and stealing are acceptable as long as they reach their destination.  Anything that reflects poorly on them, they throw back to the Republicans.  We see this in the resignation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the interim appointment of Matthew Whittaker.  The left is using this legitimate presidential action to create a constitutional crisis, while calling Whittaker’s appointment…a constitutional crisis.  As they try to steal the elections in Arizona, Florida and Georgia, they say we are stealing the elections. 

Election Supervisor Brenda Snipes is running the show in Broward Country despite past and present election irregularities and yet, somehow, Republicans are depriving voters of their day at the polls.

Georgia gubernatorial candidate and firebrand Stacey Abrams set the stage for this battle of the ballots in her Obamaesque election night speech.  "Georgia is just within reach, but we cannot seize it until all voices are heard and I promise you tonight, we're going to make sure that every vote is counted." The Democrats were primed for this challenge after a federal court ruling that Georgia Secretary of State and Abrams’ opponent Brian Kemp had weaponized his office by rejecting ballots where the signatures didn’t match those on record.  Apparently, laws designed to ensure fairness to all voters while upholding the integrity of the electoral system, are voter suppression laws. 

Democrats twist and spin like a dreidel on acid.  They demand “count every vote!” even though election officials do not have to count what the law determines are late ballots, ballots that do not meet standards of reliability, or have irregularities like addresses that don’t exist or signatures that don’t match.  They insist illegal aliens are legal immigrants entitled to all the rights and privileges of citizens and legal residents.  Their fellow travelers in the media dutifully recite “count every vote” and “no racism towards immigrants” and the gullible public takes it as gospel.

On every front Trump is being attacked and it isn’t just in the news.  It occurs at White House press conferences, on the street hours after he announces the appointment of an interim AG, on trains by a congressman tempted by a committee chairmanship, in the book of the former FLOTUS, in the speeches of the former POTUS, at the front door and driveway of TV commentators, and in close elections in red states that Republicans won. 

Conservatives are tired.  They just want their elected officials to wrap things up in a neat bow so they can work and raise their children.  But that’s not enough.  We win this country back by weaponizing ourselves. We are the power.  Because of our efforts, a majority of congressional Republicans now embrace the ideals we fought for during the Obama years.   

Warriors don’t retreat just as they are making inroads. We may not be fighting a kinetic war, but it is our destiny to fight this ideological war for the soul of this country.  It is just as vital and, in some ways harder, because the enemy is an internal hegemon--progressivism.  Fortunately, it no longer hides in the shadows.  We see its face every day. It is tenacious, brazenly mendacious, ferocious, avaricious, ubiquitous; it is relentless and merciless. 

This is not a war with swords and guns, but of words and actions.  My father fought against NAFTA for 30 years.  Trump couldn’t have changed NAFTA without the efforts of people like Dad.  The president can’t do all he has to do in the next two years without us either.         

The midterms were a mixed bag and left us feeling pretty lousy.  And it’s not over given the looming morass of election challenges.  We also face the exhausting reality that the left will not stop until they take down a president who has our back in a way I’ve never seen in a political leader, let alone a president. Are we going to let this happen? 

America’s conservatives are at a crossroads.  We can tack to the right and commit to a new “morning in America,” emboldened by the power we have as the People, by judges and representatives devoted to  conservatism, and a Senate majority that can punch back working in tandem with a fearless and indefatigable President.  Or, we can tack to the left, where we’d be “mourning in America” because we let the light go out on this beacon on a hill.

Image: cropped screen grab from YouTube

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