We each have a choice this November between two very different value systems. One operates on utter loyalty to the in-group, clearly displays contempt for anyone else, and does “whatever it takes” to win. We Americans have been caught off guard by this group’s all-out attack on traditional ways, so doing “whatever it takes” – including outright deceit – may seem effective.
But violating social standards (honesty, accountability) erodes relationships and destroys trust, and signals how desperate this group is to grasp power.
The other value system is our traditional American way, of laws, social trust, and responsibility. We are familiar with how this system works, so we know what to expect. “Business as usual” is slow because rules are followed, and it can be manipulated by powerful players, so the progress it brings is incremental. But progress does come, thanks to our constitution, a shared social contract that recognizes and protects every human life equally.
We foolishly take for granted the legal system that provides us with individual rights, like voting. We’ve grown blind to the dangers of autocracy – like in strongman Putin’s Russia – exactly what we fought to escape in 1776.
I urge you to use your precious opportunity to vote. Our president is not only flirting with dictators, he’s making an audacious grab for power. He’s dismantling our Post Office – removing thousands of sorting machines and mailboxes – and polling places are being closed, all so Americans cannot vote fairly. Let’s deprive this would-be autocrat of his victory over us.
Kirby MacLaurin, Honesdale, Pa.