One hundred days

On the one hundredth day I’ll be glad that we:

  • Haven’t yet had a “Reichstag fire,” a dramatic event used to frighten the public into accepting an extraordinary loss of freedoms,
  • Haven’t seen mass arrests of Latino workers and Muslim immigrants,
  • Haven’t seen large-scale political violence,
  • Have only bruised but not yet buried the Constitutional separation of powers,
  • Gained two key recusals and one announced retirement of obstacles to honest Russia investigations (I mean Attorney General Jeff Sessions, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, and House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz.),
  • Have not yet created a military conflagration abroad,
  • Have reasons bigger than Donald Trump to hope that our environment survives his disinterest and neglect,
  • And, most importantly, we have seen public resistance to Trumpism persist and become organized.

If I’ve omitted developments to feel glad about—and no doubt I have—it is because there is yet much to worry about. I worry:

  • That because of single-party control of government, Donald Trump will remain in office despite massive circumstantial evidence that his election was deliberately influenced by Russia with possible—I believe likely—cooperation of the candidate and his staff, and that this treasonous act will go uncorrected,
  • About war, both civil and foreign, nuclear and conventional, in North Korea or the Middle East, involving Russia and China,
  • About the destruction beyond repair of the earth’s atmosphere as U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement encourages other polluters to stop complying,
  • About the Trump budget’s abandonment of support for the arts and humanities, the disciplines that feed our knowledge of the world and ourselves and our sense of justice,
  • About the long-term effect of scandal in government, especially the use of government office for personal enrichment, and the Republicans’ neglect of Constitutional prohibition of such abuse, that the failure to enforce ethics and anti-nepotism standards will leave Trump unfettered in his use of government to grow his wealth at the expense of the national interest,
  • That the administration’s constant and unchallenged criticism of the free press will continue to weaken its credibility and authority, encouraging polarization of opinion as each side accepts only reporting that supports its viewpoint, and that the administration will eventually take legal action to restrict the free press,
  • That the excessive emphasis on immigration enforcement will result in large-scale violations of basic rights like due process and habeas corpus, and that public objections to the abuse of police powers will be used to defend and encourage such abuses,
  • That the nation’s police and intelligence agencies—especially the FBI, CIA, and NSA—will be used again and again for political purposes, that the gross injustices like James Comey’s comparative treatment of the Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump investigations will go unrighted and become precedent for future use of these agencies as political enforcement tools,
  • That Trump’s aggressive rejection of learning and expertise and his failure to search beyond Wall Street and the military for nominees for key positions will render his administration unprepared for solving complicated problems, thus causing it to blunder into avoidable disasters at home and abroad,
  • That deterioration of our standards of behavior will make more acceptable the use of vulgarity, unapologetic dishonesty, self-serving leadership, violent law enforcement, and scandal in government,
  • That our country will lose its allies and become isolated, a pariah among the nations Americans respect.

One thought on “One hundred days

  1. We are right to continue to worry. I wonder if the Senate committee has done even a single thing to look into the Russian connection.

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