Whatever remains of this nation, and this planet, four years from now, historians and scientists will sift through the ashes looking for evidence of criminality. Which crime of Donald J. Trump will they assess to be the most serious?
Arguably, his massive destruction of environmental progress and protections. “Treason against the human race” is how my journalist friend, Steve Klinger, aptly describes these horrors. Absent the initiation of nuclear war, these crimes will stand as the most serious attempts ever made by a national leader to destroy the entire world.
As usual, the carnival antics of his attempt at governance will distract attention from the depths of his depravity on this and the other great issues of our time.
Who leaked what to whom and why? Who owes his or her vast wealth to dalliances with the worst of the financial criminals in other countries? Who sold out to whom and when? Secret sallies by corrupt congressmen in the dead of night into White House grounds to receive purloined documents. Lies to congress by appointees to head the regulatory agencies of government. Lies to the people by a peccary in an ill-fitting suit. Lies! Fake news! Tweets! Sad.
Never has the democratic republic been in such a sorry state. Never has there been such a paucity of integrity and leadership at the highest levels of government. Never has the common man been under such relentless attack from all directions. Never has there been such a sweeping destruction of basic human rights. Life — air fit to breathe, water safe to drink, poison-free food in adequate supply to feed all the people. Liberty — freedom from fear of the police and of government spies and of religious hatred; freedom to speak openly in criticism of government mis-rule; freedom to worship, or not worship, as one’s conscience dictates. The pursuit of happiness — health care for all, with women guaranteed the right to control their own bodies without government interference; public lands, wisely managed and protected for the good of all, not just a handful of greedy corporations and land-rapers; living with and loving whom one pleases; a share of the great national wealth allocated to the encouragement and development of the arts and sciences; tolerance of neighbors of different colors, traditions and values.
Day after day the populace is assaulted by new hateful executive orders, vicious new laws, rights-stomping regulations. Our leaders open their mouths and villainy spews out. Even the rhetoric of government pollutes air already increasingly laden with deadly elements. The technology is so vast, so rapidly expanding, that there is no safe corner, no soothing nook, in which to find a moment’s rest, a few seconds of peace and safety. We are encased in a vast and sophisticated apparatus of repression and it is managed by a madman.
But worst of all, this madman has chosen to make war upon the thin veneer of elements enveloping this planet that can sustain the life that has evolved upon it. Not since the Great Extinction have so many creatures been threatened with elimination within so brief a period of time. Never have there been so many threats to human health, vitality and existence, deliberately and maniacally exacerbated by a single man and his vile cohorts.
Once, Time magazine wondered on its cover, “Is God Dead?” More recently, Time magazine wondered on its cover, “Is Truth Dead?”