The members of the Electoral College need to be made aware (if they’re not already) that Donald Trump is a genuine menace and a potentially great danger to our great nation. In his own environment (business) he may be very successful and with his family, he may be a great father. I suspect he may be a good friend to many, as well. But as a President of the United States … he is terrifying.
He may be the President-elect, but already he is saying and doing things that are causing serious divisiveness and disruption – not only within the United States but in the global community as well. As just one example, recently, his phone call with the Taiwanese leader represents a major diplomatic faux pas, and has angered China and may have damaged our relations with China. As you know, China is considered the second largest economy and the second largest military in the world. China combined with Russia could form a collaboration of countries that would represent an extremely formidable super power. Add North Korea, and the volatility of its brash, leader Kim Jong Un, and you have three nuclear powers that, between themselves, have considerably more nuclear weapons than the United States.
As you also know, US relations with China are strained, US relations with Russia are often being referred to as another “Cold War” and relations with North Korea are almost as bad as they’ve ever been. With a Donald Trump as president, with consideration of his “shoot from the hip” style, his lack of finesse, his naïveté with regard to the workings of politics from the perspective of a world leader, and his penchant for taking things personally (as indicated in his 3 AM tweets) and you have an extremely volatile mix.
Then, let’s consider another alarming factor: Donald Trump has a penchant for believing and perpetuating, and even originating, conspiracy theories. It is believed that Trump listens to, and takes seriously, websites like Breitbart news, Info Wars, (etc) – and many other fake news that have been proliferating throughout the Internet and social media as of late. Donald Trump was a major figure in the “Birther Movement” against Pres. Obama, and has repeated information suggesting that he has bought into a number of conspiracy theories regarding Hillary Clinton and even Bill Clinton.
Trump claimed he was going to “drain the swamp” – but is now surrounding himself with people who actually represent the swamp. His selection of Steve Bannon, formerly of Breitbart news, as an advisor alone should give people pause. Bannon is a former Goldman Sachs banker who has been known to either create our perpetuate fake news stories, is a divisive far right-wing pundit, has been linked to white supremacy groups, and, under his leadership, Breitbart news has promoted racism, anti-Semitism, bigotry, xenophobia, and other inflammatory, derisive views of people and groups he, and Breitbart news, has taken aim at. Trump chose, to head the EPA, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt – a move that signals Trump’s intent to undo President Obama’s work to curb climate change. Then there is the CEO of Hardee’s/Wendy’s restaurants, who opposes the $15.00 per hour minimum wage, and opposes paying overtime to salaried people who make less than 47,500 a year.
Then, as his Treasury Secretary, Trump has selected a former Goldman Sachs banker Steven Mnuchin, who profited from the housing meltdown.
He has named Rep. Tom Price to head the Department of Health and Human Services. Price is an outspoken critic of Obama care, and wants to privatize Medicare, is a member of the Tea Party, and is a very scary choice for all those millions of people who depend on the federal Medicare health program. These people now stand in fear of their health benefits being reduced, made more costly, or lost altogether.
He has selected Sen. Jeff sessions from Alabama as his new attorney general. Sessions has been reported as making racially insensitive comments to a former colleague, Thomas Figures, ad African-American. Sessions told him to be careful what he said about “white folks” and “made a comment sympathetic to the KKK.”
As of this writing, the remaining cabinet positions have not been decided yet, but the kind of people Trump is surrounding himself with sends a very scary message about Trump, and about the pain and hardship he intends to inflict upon the American people. Trump and his cabinet are all members of the “one percent” and they represent what I think of as perpetrators of “the war against the poor.”
No Electoral College members have ever voted significantly against the candidate with the most pledged votes. Despite the fact that Hillary Clinton won nearly two and a half million more popular votes than Trump, the Electoral College system will vote the candidate with significantly fewer actual votes. To me, that represents a slap in the face to the voters, and an abandonment of what “majority vote” stands for. It is un-democratic.
It has been proven again and again throughout recent history that if enough people stand up against unfairness from the government, it can cause changes to happen. The most recent example it the Dakota Pipeline protest: at least for now, the pipeline construction has been delayed – and may be reevaluated and another path taken for the land the pipeline is built across, saving the potential for poisoning of groundwater and impingement of sacred Indian land.
I wonder … if enough people stood against the Electoral College, if the right thing might be accomplished – and elect the person who actually won the popular vote.