STOP! Don’t Go!

I have to get this off my chest…

To people holding, attending, and covering Donald Trump’s rallies as the campaign wears down: It’s excruciating to watch a massive murder/suicide pact take place. Yes, you may say that not everyone at a massive rally will get sick, and — of that, fewer will die — but, as a therapist and a human being, I don’t know which of the people will get sick, and my head spins at the thought of worrying about tens of thousands of people’s physical and mental health.

JUST STOP IT! Why, on earth would anyone attend a rally with thousands of people, packed in like sardines, not wearing masks, and yelling. It’s like the anti-CDC guidelines are being followed. You know that. In some cases, that’s the point! No politician, no science, no authority is going to tell you what to do! Scream it away, with people who are as sick mentally as you are. You will lose this argument — not with politicians, or science, or authorities, or even with me. You will lose the argument with a virus. You will lose the argument with your illness. Some of you will lose the argument with death itself.

Folks, we are in the middle of two of the most major crises in our history — the COVID-19 pandemic and the potential loss of everything a democracy holds dear. People who attend these rallies contribute to the deaths in both cases.

Let’s say, for the sake of the argument, something you can’t even entertain as a thought: Donald Trump wants to kill America. What better strategy could a person come up with that 1) having people participate at mass super-spreader events in the middle of a pandemic and 2) making it unsafe to vote in places where he might be losing the his bid to become an elected dictator.

Campaigning two weeks before an election means the places he campaigned will become show symptoms two weeks later — on or near the election day itself. Because the virus doesn’t just stay in the place where you met, it goes with you, back to your community, the time of the election becomes the most hazardous to go out. If a person’s in the hospital, they won’t vote. The doctors and nurses taking care of those people won’t vote. People who just get sick won’t vote. Want to feel more hopeless about the election? This is the way to do it.

Trump knows better. Trump shouldn’t set up these rallies. You know better. You shouldn’t go to these rallies. News sources know better than to make this seem exciting. They shouldn’t cover them.

If Mr. Trump’s campaign suffers because of the virus, it will be like everything and everyone else in the pandemic. Furthermore, if you want Trump to win, it’s a lot more efficient to just go vote for the man than it is for you to stop at a rally along the way and get sick and infect others.

If you’re old enough to remember Jim Jones and the tragedy of his followers killing themselves in Guyana, you know how jarring it is to watch. Picture doing that every day for 2 weeks and you can now understand how truly bizarre and sad this is to watch.

I don’t care how outrageous Mr. Trump is. I don’t care how humorous Mr. Trump is. I don’t care that you can give the finger to The Libs. I don’t care why you go. None of that can be as important as your very life, or the lives of others — none of it.

So, I beg you, Mr. Trump, don’t hold rallies. I beg you, attendees, don’t go to these rallies. News outlets don’t cover these rallies. If you are the mayor of a city where these rallies are being held, don’t allow these rallies to take place in your city or state. This must stop, for all our sakes.

Resisting with Peace,

John

Why?

It occurs to me that no one is asking why Republicans seem so intent on putting Amy Comey Barrett on the Supreme Court. “Because they can” isn’t really a reason. “Because Trump wants it” indicates that they can’t act n their own. Also, if Michael Cohen is to be believed, Trump doesn’t know one judge from another, and she is being put up by the Federalist Society. In short, they are responsible for her being put up. Why? What is it about her perceived opinions that they want, and why do they want it? I don’t get it.

As I understand it, she’s conservative and they want the Conservative views to reign over the land. What are conservative values? They aren’t asking for conservative values that I would understand. They are asking not for conservatism. Because Trump wins and might get his way, they are asking for fascism. Do Republicans really want that in America? I can’t imagine why, but I think they should consider the question.

Next, they believe that she will overturn the Affordable Care Act, formerly known as Obamacare. In the past, they tried twenty times to repeal it… when Obama was in office. They couldn’t then. Now, under Trump, they couldn’t because people nearly rioted over losing it. Why, then, if they know the outcome of having her on the court leads to the overturn of Obamacare, why do they want what the majority of Americans don’t want? Again, as Representatives (Senators) how can they push for something that clearly the majority of people want?

Trump wants to crush anything with the word Obama attached to it. He hates Obama more than he loves America. I don’t believe all Republicans think that way — witness the Lincoln Project. I’m sure that don’t or didn’t like it, but that was water under the bridge for most of them. Why are they still trying to end it? Again, I don’t get it…

Finally, there is the all-but-guaranteed overturning of Row vs, Wade that they believe will come from Barrett’s seat on the Court. Again, I don’t understand. Aren’t there women Republicans? Surely they too want control over their bodies. Does all control over bodies equate to abortion? No, I suppose not, but they are integrally linked. Why would any woman vote against more rights for women? To put it bluntly, do Republican men ever want to get laid again? I can see the likelihood of that dropping if Roe. V. Wade is overturned.

Finally, there’s the word from Clarence Thomas and Justice Alito that they would like to repeal equal marriage rights. I don’t know where Bennett stands on LGBTQ rights. That’s not the point. The point is what they expect of her. Log Cabin Republicans never made any sense to me, but they did exist. That means there must be gay Republicans.

So, here’s the final and ultimate question: If Democrats don’t want this nominee’s values on the Court, and women don’t want her values on the Court, and gay folks don’t want her values on the Court, who exactly are they representing? Isn’t their job to represent the people of their state?

Their voting is entangled with a fascist’s dreams, and I think she’s too far to the Right for most Republicans in the Senate. So why are they doing it. I suspect it’s a moment of passing insanity, and they will regret it as much as the rest of the country does. I would urge them to think about it.

Resisting with Peace,

John

Does The Economy Matter If We’re All Dead?

I’m watching the Vice-Presidential Debate and something came up that has always bothered me. It’s not about either of the candidates said, nor is it about a particular party. It’s about logic and priorities.

People talk about the economy like it means more than human life. In the beginning of the pandemic, some people — captains of industry, mostly — wanted to have people go back to work while it wasn’t safe. The governor of Florida continues to want to open that state because tourism is affected, again, when it’s apparently not safe. My father lives in that state and I am well aware of how important tourism is to him and to people’s livelihoods. Still, I don’t think he’ll be going to Walt Disney World if he’s dead.

More important than that, and on a much larger scale, there’s the question of climate change. We all have lives and traditions that we want to keep going. The oil industry, the gas industry, factories, and so on, belong to an old prosperity. It was prosperity. I remember it. But even then, rivers with pollution killed fish and we couldn’t swim in them. Air pollution in California was so thick, a mountain could hide. Yes, I loved paying $.57 per gallon for gas, but I also like to breathe.

When I lived in Southern California, friends and I would go into the San Gabriel mountains, above the smog line. We would cough while we were up there as our lungs cleaned out, then they would fill back up with pollution as we came back to sea level.

Now, 9 out of 10 scientists believe that ozone change in the atmosphere has led to climate change that will destroy all human life on earth. Again, whether people have jobs or not won’t matter if they are dead.

From a moral standpoint, Jesus said it thousands of years ago: “What does it profit a person if the gain the whole world and lose their soul?” What good will Jeff Besos’ billions do him when it’s all said and done? Or the Koch Brothers? Or oil barons, bankers, or, in literature, Ebenezer Scrooge?

People like Greta Sunburg — young people with no filters like politeness — see what is important and what is not. Money and what it buys are okay, but none of it matters if we’re dead. How can people not get that ?

Resisting with Peace,

John