I don’t blame POTUS Trump for his shenanigans (or crimes and misdemeanors, assaults, tax evasion – tomatoes, to-MAH-tos).
Just like I don’t blame Jerry Sandusky for kidnapping and sexually assaulting scores of young men. Or the priests who abused boys for decades. Or Scout leaders. Or teachers. Or cops who shoot (brown people) first and ask questions later.
I don’t blame them – entirely. Sure, they’re complete scum, as history and investigations reveal. They did what they did, but, as trials like these unfolded, journalists researched untold stories, we discover, more often than not, that people did in fact, know about it, often many, many people – yet did nothing.
Think dirtbag Larry Nasser. He’s a scumbag for sure, but there are many others: USA Olympic Committee, USA Gymnastics, and Michigan State all knew – so many people not only kept silent, but covered it up, allowing the abuse to continue and countless more to be harmed.
It’s the institutions that stand silently by, knowing what they know and letting it happen anyway. Or not addressing it. Or holding anyone accountable. They are the ones I hold accountable.
Instead, after the atrocity discovered, they link arms and protect that teacher or cop blindly – and cast blame on the victim and witnesses.
“Not ALL teachers, not ALL cops, not ALL priests, not ALL coaches” and ‘unproven allegations’ is paraded proudly, except, often there is an entire institution behind the culprit, waiting in the wings, that isn’t surprised at all by said allegations. They actually knew what was happening, heard about it weeks, months, years ago – but did nothing. And yet victims and witnesses are berated for being brave enough to do something.
I know not all teachers/cops/coaches/bosses are bad, but ignoring the bad ones to protect the brand – well that has political and financial consequences, one can hope.
Back to Trump.
Trump is Trump, we knew we were getting a self-proclaimed tax-evading pussy grabber when we elected him.
But now that the depth of his doings are being investigated, not one Republican is standing up and saying – this isn’t okay.
We’ve seen this blind faith before: in churches, schools, police precincts, colleges, teams, media moguls, at the office.
It’s the people in power who knew full well what was going on, yet instead of doing something – anything to stop it – they wave the flag of solidarity and close ranks. Nothing to see here, move along. Gaslighting us to silence until we too, begin to question the validity of the accusations.
This is unethical, perhaps illegal, and completely unfair.
Which is why, I will only elect Democratic candidates – straight across.
I didn’t always do this, in fact, advocated against it. But unless a Republican candidate has actively stood up and said, “NO. This is not okay and I won’t be a part of it,” I’m out. Completely.
Local politics are different, friends tell me. “Come on, Kate. You can’t be like that. Not here.”
Oh yes I can. And I will.
If candidates – local, state or the fancy-pants in DC – won’t denounce what’s happening publicly, I guess this is my itty-bitty protest vote. If candidates won’t stand up to what’s wrong now, how do I know they’ll stand up and call out injustice, inequity, or imbalance right here at home?
And judging from local town Facebook groups where the racist ugly runs rampant, I don’t want anyone they support elected. Every town has these pages and groups. It’s a reflection of what we’ve become, of what is tolerated, and the more people who say no, either by leaving these groups to scream in an empty room, or taking their protest to the polls, the less acceptable it will be. Or so I hope.
So I’m saying NO to the whole lotta them, even though some may be “good guys” or “great people” they’re not strong enough to go against what we all know is wrong, so they’re not good enough for office, in my opinion. And many are fanning the fires of racism on social media, repeating hateful vitriol in public spaces and ranting and raving against anyone who speaks out against POTUS.
(I’ve searched for the 2016 Elect Trump sign surrounded by local Newtown GOP candidates outside the local pizza shop, but can’t find it. Damn it. Locals know what I mean.)
Maybe I’m doing the same. I don’t know.
What I do know is I won’t vote for anyone who doesn’t publicly speak out against what’s happening in DC and seeping into our towns and cities. It’s my country too, and I still think we’re made up of people, and those people decide policy so I’m choosing very carefully who I want my people in power to be.