Wednesday, January 31, 2018

No, Senator Murkowski, All of Us Should NOT Be Able to Support What President Trump Said Last Night

I read President Trump’s State of the Union speech, and I'm taking issue with your characterization of it. Indeed, I am 100% not here for it.

It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to lie to Puerto Ricans—American citizens—by telling them that “we are with you, we love you, and always will pull through together always,” when a third of Puerto Rico still lacks electricity and running water almost four months after Hurricane Maria.


It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to offer condolences to victims of mass shootings without acknowledging the fact that it is easier for children to get their hands on semi-automatic assault weapons than unpasteurized cheese.

It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to act like the temporary success of our stock market—a corporate casino—should override our moral and ethical compass and always be paramount to empathy and human rights, and that money is the only metric of success that matters. While that may be true for this President, it was not for our Founding Fathers.

It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to call us a “compassionate nation” and yet spread dog-whistling lies about the rate at which immigrants commit crimes.

It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to call on Congress to pass laws allowing the executive branch to dismiss federal employees at will and strip them of all accountability to the people, thereby essentially asking Congress to end the rule of law.

It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to praise law enforcement and veterans while starving the VA of employees and leadership, and while smearing daily the largest and most respected federal law enforcement body in the nation. A body which (not coincidentally) is in the midst of investigating the President and his lickspittles’ own self-enriching white collar crimes while simultaneously resisting his and his Congressional stooges’ brazen, relentless attempts to undermine its integrity.

It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to pretend that 83% of the savings resulting from the recent tax reform won’t ultimately land in the pockets of the top one percent of earners.

It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to co-opt the American flag and National Anthem and give jingoism and ethno-nationalism a monopoly on patriotism at the expense of quiet, peaceful protest guaranteed by the First Amendment.

It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to declare the opioid crisis a public health emergency, yet do nothing about it while unleashing the Attorney General on legal marijuana to the cynical, transparent end of incarcerating more people of color and bolstering the prison industry.

It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to crow about “beautiful, clean coal” which is not a thing, and yet refuse to acknowledge climate change, which—as you and all of your constituents well know—totally is.

It does not make America safe, strong, and proud to claim that “we are restoring our strength and standing abroad” and “strengthening our friendships around the world” when global respect for American leadership is the lowest it’s been in our nation’s history, and for good reason.

This is how the dictator of a Banana Republic talks and behaves. Not the leader of what purports to be the world's most revered constitutional democracy. 

You are complicit in this, and your complicity is shameful. Most of us are NOT able to support this vision of America, and you shouldn't be either.



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