The Write Stuff

Rumors abound regarding the incoming presidential administration’s plan to oust reporters from the White House.  Two days ago, news of the threat rocketed through mainstream  media and social networks.

This trend terrifies most of us.  As one writer explained, “For a society to be responsible and powerful, it must be informed. Our free press, protected by the first constitutional amendment, plays a critical role in ensuring that every American has constant access to important and trustworthy news.”

The rumblings from the Trump staff echo the president-elect’s castigation of CNN and BuzzFeed,  The rest of America should be very afraid.  Our information source lies in the path of the demagoguery implicit in this sweeping dismissal of the media.

But a more dastardly theme underlies this turn of events.  Trump broadcasts his privilege in every move, every announcement, every shrug.  He tells us that he and he alone can make us “great” again.  He insisted in advance that he will be “the best jobs president God ever created”.  Every nuance of his attitude, the swagger as he steps off the bus and grabs our collective pussy, announces his elitist view of himself.

As I contemplate the undoing of the progress which we have made in our great nation in the last eight years, I am reminded of the sobering words of John Adams:

“The right of a nation to kill a tyrant, in cases of necessity, can no more be doubted, than to hang a robber, or kill a flea. But killing one tyrant only makes way for worse, unless the people have sense, spirit and honesty enough to establish and support a constitution guarded at all points against the tyranny of the one, the few, and the many.”

                        — John Adams, A Defense of the Constitutions of Government

We do not want to sink into lawlessness; so therefore, it is incumbent upon us to safeguard against the tendrils of tyranny shot through the words of the president-elect.

We look first to our press to keep us informed.  When we are informed, we can act.   But waiting for word will no longer suffice.  We have been given notice that the flow of information will be staunched.  Therefore, we must be like the sentry watching the light in the tower.  We must be prepared to stand with our brothers and our sisters against the coming peril when that light goes dark.

To do otherwise will consign this nation to the whims of a dictator.  We cannot afford four years of unchallenged tyranny.

“As to the history of the revolution, my ideas may be peculiar, perhaps singular. What do we mean by the Revolution? The war? That was no part of the revolution; it was only an effect and consequence of it. The revolution was in the minds of the people, and this was effected … before a drop of blood was shed.”

— John Adams, letter to Thomas Jefferson, Aug. 24, 1815



3 thoughts on “The Write Stuff”

  1. I’m no great scholar, but it seems I’ve seen reports here and there of how people manage to become dictators. One of the things I’ve seen states that “they alone” are able to solve all the perceived ills of their supporters. Another states that they set about de-legitimizing the media and instilling distrust.

    What I see easily happening here is exactly those moves. And the very same people that voted for Trump seem to be all too eager to believe that he and he alone is telling them the truth. (whatever version of events he seems to be spewing forth at the particular moment) Sadly, any moves to banish the “lying press” will likely only be met with cheers from this crowd.

  2. Living in The Netherlands I see this happening in Turkey….Erdogan closing down the press except the national press. Putting almost all the people who are against him, in his opinion, behind bars, firing thousands and thousands of judges, teachers, professors etc. In short a dictator.
    A Dutch correspondent on a talk show told that the media in Russia every day tell the people the US & European army is at the Russian borders…..Putin is a dictator…….and unfortunately I see the same happening in the US under Trump…..make America America again!

  3. Gerald Ford once said that many of the men who campaigned on a platform of harshness, and won, soon found out that it was not that easy to govern according to the platform, and that he often found himself in situations as President where he thought differently about solutions to some problems than he had as House minority leader.
    Let us hope this becomes the situation after Mr. Trump assumes office.

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