View From Here
By David Mark Greaves
As we go to press the counting of ballots continues in several states but mainly in Pennsylvania, where there are over a million absentee ballots from Philadelphia and surrounding areas to be counted, and which may decide the next President of the United States of America. Or maybe, in the end, Pennsylvania may not even matter.
Honestly, we had hoped for and expected a game-changing reset of the nation’s direction but we were woefully mistaken and wildly optimistic. We believed too much in the promise of America. However the election goes, we have to understand we are living in a nation where a lot of people like Donald Trump and his followers are more legion than we thought. His lies and threats to democratic institutions are not seen as disqualifying for the Office of the President. And the more crass he becomes, the more they bind to him as just one of the guys.
This means that issues of climate change, health care, racial equality, and confronting the pandemic with science, are not real problems for his voters. They claim what matters is the economy and that Trump is not a politician and is more like them. There is also an affinity for Trump among some Black men. We asked a Black male senior, a playwright on public assistance, why he supported Donald Trump. “His performance under fire is unprecedented. He’s fearless. He has demonstrated expertise in the mastery of the capitalist system.” And regarding race, “contrary to the propaganda against him,” he’s demonstrated his sense of equality in racial matters “As seen in his early friendship with rappers,” and his “hosting an event for Jesse Jackson at Trump Tower.” “He gave multi-year funding to HBCUs and stopped the influx of migrant labor taking jobs.”
And then there is his belief that the Biden family is a criminal enterprise, and that the information on Hunter Biden’s laptop showed that “Trump was impeached for being right.” “Tech giants and media have been hiding the truth and everything that could be considered by the regular voter is suppressed.”
I came away from the conversation confirmed in the thinking that the FOX channel is a poison being administered to the nation. And yet, as we look at the election returns and the tightness of the race, we have to come to grips with the realization, and it’s hard, that this thinking is real and serious and we cannot be in denial about where we are as a nation. Using these arguments as cover, White supremacists have attracted those they despise, and allowed White people to rationalize the toxic expression of their whiteness, which is at the core of who they are.
We do know that, at least until January 20, we will be ruled by a man with the powers of the presidency and no ethical, moral or emotional restraints. And if he does lose, he will not only be confronted with being a loser, but also the prospect of legal entanglements with New York Attorney General Letitia James and New York District Attorney Cyrus Vance and how much he would really dislike Riker’s Island. This will be a very, very dangerous man and time, and we and our institutions, will have to stand strong as a nation and weather our way through.