It has been over a week since Trump's election to the presidency. It has been difficult to accept that so many Americans believe this man will make their life better. It has been difficult to accept that so many Americans are misogynist, racists, bigots, etc. just like Trump is. Violence against the vulnerable has ticked upward since his election. It is difficult to accept that so many Americans' vision of our nation is the same as Trump's.
So, I must decide which side I am on. I cannot remain neutral.
I am distressed and anxious for America and full of uncertainty as to how America will change - and not for the better, and for the direction America will take for the next four years.
The words President and Trump are an oxymoron.
I can hardly bring myself to put those two words together and not choke on them. But, what Trump, the demagogue, has been spouting for the last year, is really just the Republican Platform of the RNC.
That scares me even more. When reading the Republican Platform I was looking for a shimmer of light or a glimmer of hope for America, but finding none.
To read the Republican Platform, go to gop.org and be sure to click on and read the FULL Republican Platform for 2016 and not just the abridged edition.
For purposes of this blog, I shall highlight four sections of the platform:
I chose the preamble for basic information and the last three because they are what are most important to me.
In the preamble the Republican Party states its general beliefs and creed in the United States of America is:
"We affirm - as did the Declaration of Independence that all are created equal, endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." (p.1)
So far, so good.
As we know, their major platform is one of government reform.
"The more it (government) intrudes in every aspect of American life, the more it alienates the citizens who work, pay taxes, and wonder what has happened to 'the country they love.' (p. 23)
And, here the hypocrisy begins. Republicans don't want government intruding in American lives, but of course they want to intrude where they want to intrude:
They want to keep others, who have 'inalienable rights endowed by their Creator,' and interfere in their bedrooms and personal decisions in their lives. This is "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?" This is intrusion into American lives on the most personal and intimate level. I don't want government there. What happens in the bedroom is not the government's business.
So, of course, Trump's crude, vulgar language and misogynist comments about women are okay with Republicans because who wants an 'uppity' woman for president? She was defeated by a man and this is how life should be according to Republicans. This is the last grasp of old white men to hang onto their power.
The Republicans want to "modernize Medicare, empowering it on a secure financial footing." (p. 23)
Well, I want that too.
They plan to "impose no changes for persons 55 or older." (p.23)
Good to hear.
Others, those under age 55 will have the OPTION of traditional medicare or transition to a premium - a support model designed to strengthen patient choices, promote cost saving competition among providers and better guard against the fraud, and abuse that now diverts billions of dollars every year away from patient care." (p.24)
I can't stop laughing. An OPTION? What if everyone's OPTION is traditional medicare?
And cheaper premiums means less coverage because in this country you get what you pay for. At a time when illnesses pick up, seniors need more coverage not less.
And, do you really believe there will be OPTIONS available?
Medicaid will be part of welfare reform. (p.24) This is because it is too big and too flawed to be administered by the federal government so it will be administered from the states, according to the platform.
So, those receiving medicaid from wealthier states will have better health care, and those receiving medicaid from poorer states will have insufficient and incompetent health care.
This is "all are created equal?" But, we will have unequal health care for our most vulnerable, especially our children.
According to the platform, states will have block granting to allow states to EXPERIMENT with different systems to address health, mental health and develop successful models to be replaced in states across the nation. How long will this EXPERIMENT take? We are going to EXPERIMENT with human lives? We are going to EXPERIMENT with the most
vulnerable in our nation, the poor, the mentally ill and children?
And, of course with Republican Medicaid comes more government interference in women and their families' lives.
"We respect the states authority and flexibility to EXCLUDE abortion providers from federal programs such as Medicaid and other health care and family planning programs so long as they continue to perform or refer to elective abortions or sell body parts of aborted children." (I assume this means stem cells)
Again, some states will adopt this and some won't insuring discrimination against some and not others. So the women who can't afford to go to another state to receive all types of health care will be discriminated against.
When it comes to Social Security the Republican agenda is to preserve and modernize a secure retirement system. Current retirees and those close to retirement can be assured of their benefits.
Well, that's good.
All options should be considered to preserve Social Security. (p. 24 - 25). Then, they turn around and say they oppose, "tax increases and believe in the power of markets to create wealth and to help secure the future of our Social Security system."
Again, I can't stop laughing We are going to leave funding of Social Security to "the power of the markets to create wealth.?" Just like how the economic and stock market crash in 2008 depleted everyone's 401K? This is their answer to a secure Social Security system?
Immigration is the hot topic of this president-elect and the Republican party. According to the Republican Platform, "Our party is the natural home for those who come in search of freedom and justice. We welcome all to the Great Opportunity Party. (GOP) (p. 25)
Unless, of course, you are Muslim or Syrian refugees. These people the party does not want. Setting up a religious list or a tracking system does not offer freedom and justice to immigrants.
The Director of the FBI (Comey) has said it is not possible to fully vet all potential refugees coming to this country, And, why not? That is his job. His job is to make that possible. If he can't, will someone please fire this guy?
I agree, that all immigrants should enter our country legally and follow our immigration laws.The immigration laws that are already on the books should be enforced. We should not have fluid borders where everyone and anyone can enter our country,
But, if you look back to the start of the Mexican and Central American illegal immigration problem, it began under President Ronald Reagan. Those living in DC and the environs wanted cheap labor; cheap nannies, housekeepers, and landscapers. So, our government looked the other way and allowed an underclass of illegal workers to develop so that they would not have to pay them over the table and also pay employment taxes. We created our own illegal immigration problem.
That is why President Reagan gave amnesty to about one million illegal immigrants during his presidency. Most of the jobs held by illegal immigrants are those Americans don't want to do. So, why not give them a path to citizenship and allow them to stay and keep those jobs Americans don't want and won't take?
"Out highest priority must be to secure our borders...That is why we support building a wall along our southern border...the border wall must cover the entirety of the southern border and must be sufficient to stop both vehicular and pedestrian traffic." (p.25)
Which came first, the chicken or the egg?
The wall has been part of the Republican Platform all along, and this is not just "The Donald's" idea.
The Republican Platform is what is scary and Trump is just its mouthpiece. All those Republicans that would not endorse Trump or would not condone what he says, are now jumping on the bandwagon and pushing for jobs in his presidential administration. It is sickening to see them act as lap dogs ready to jump at Trump's snap of the fingers.
So which side am I on? I am on the side of truth and decency. I am on the side that is inclusive and not exclusive. I am on the side of a diverse nation because my grandfather and great grandparents were immigrants from Italy and they gave much to this country to make it a stronger and a better nation. My German ancestors came as immigrants and fought in the American Revolution and took part in the building a nation. I am on the side that breaks down walls, not puts walls up. I am on the side that does not see the federal government as interfering in our lives but in making our lives more just and free for all.