Monthly Archives: October 2020
A resiliência da democracia americana foi duramente testada pelo primeiro mandato de Trump. Mais quatro anos seria pior. Mas enquanto os americanos esperam para votar em filas que se estendem por quarteirões em suas cidades, Trump está engajado em um ataque violento à integridade desse processo democrático essencial. Rompendo com todos os seus predecessores modernos, ele se recusou a se comprometer com uma transferência pacífica de poder, sugerindo que sua vitória é o único resultado legítimo e que se ele não vencer, ele está pronto para contestar o julgamento do povo americano em nos tribunais ou mesmo nas ruas. A enormidade e variedade dos delitos do Sr. Trump podem parecer esmagadoras. A repetição embotou a sensação de indignação, e o acúmulo de novas indignações deixa pouco tempo para nos determos nos detalhes. Este é o momento em que os americanos devem recuperar esse sentimento de indignação. É o propósito desta seção especial da Sunday Review lembrar aos leitores por que o Sr. Trump não está apto para liderar a nação. Inclui uma série de ensaios focados na corrupção desenfreada da administração de Trump, celebrações de violência, negligência grosseira com a saúde pública e política incompetente. Uma seleção de imagens icônicas destaca o histórico do presidente em questões como clima, imigração, direitos das mulheres e raça. A urgência desses ensaios fala por si. O repúdio de Trump é o primeiro passo para reparar o dano que ele causou. Mas, enquanto escrevemos estas palavras, o Sr. Trump está salgando o campo – e mesmo se ele perder, a reconstrução exigirá muitos anos e lágrimas. O Sr. Trump está sem rivais reais como o pior presidente americano da história moderna. Em 2016, seu amargo relato sobre as doenças da nação atingiu muitos eleitores. Mas a lição dos últimos quatro anos é que ele não pode resolver os problemas urgentes do país porque ele é o problema mais urgente do país. Ele é um demagogo racista que preside um país cada vez mais diversificado; um isolacionista em um mundo interconectado; um showman para sempre se gabando de coisas que nunca fez e prometendo fazer coisas que nunca fará. Ele não mostrou nenhuma aptidão para construir, mas conseguiu causar muitos danos. Ele é o homem certo para derrubar coisas. Enquanto o mundo fica sem tempo para enfrentar a mudança climática, Trump negou a necessidade de ação, abandonou a cooperação internacional e atacou os esforços para limitar as emissões. Ele montou uma repressão cruel contra a imigração legal e ilegal, sem propor uma política sensata para determinar quem deve ter permissão para vir aos Estados Unidos. Obcecado em reverter as conquistas de seu antecessor imediato, Barack Obama, ele tentou persuadir o Congresso e os tribunais a se livrar da Lei de Cuidados Acessíveis sem propor qualquer política substituta para fornecer aos americanos acesso a cuidados de saúde acessíveis. Durante os primeiros três anos de sua administração, o número de americanos sem seguro saúde aumentou 2,3 milhões – um número que certamente cresceu novamente, pois milhões de americanos perderam seus empregos este ano. Ele fez campanha como um campeão dos trabalhadores comuns, mas governou em nome dos ricos. Ele prometeu um aumento do salário mínimo federal e novos investimentos em infraestrutura; ele concedeu uma rodada de cortes de impostos que beneficiou principalmente os ricos. Ele apagou regulamentações indiscriminadamente e respondeu às preces das corporações suspendendo a aplicação de regras que ele não poderia apagar facilmente. Sob sua liderança, o Consumer Financial Protection Bureau parou de tentar proteger os consumidores e a Agência de Proteção Ambiental parou de tentar proteger o meio ambiente. Ele estreitou alianças de longa data ao abraçar ditadores como Kim Jong-un da Coreia do Norte e Vladimir Putin da Rússia, a quem Trump trata com um grau de calor e deferência que desafia qualquer explicação. Ele abandonou a Parceria Transpacífica, um acordo estratégico entre os vizinhos da China com o objetivo de pressionar a China a se conformar aos padrões internacionais. Em seu lugar, Trump conduziu uma guerra comercial tit-for-tat, impondo bilhões de dólares em tarifas – impostos que são realmente pagos pelos americanos – sem extrair concessões significativas da China. As inadequações do Sr. Trump como líder ficaram em uma exibição particularmente dolorosa durante a pandemia do coronavírus. Em vez de trabalhar para salvar vidas, Trump tratou a pandemia como um problema de relações públicas. Ele mentiu sobre o perigo, desafiou a perícia dos funcionários da saúde pública e resistiu à implementação das precauções necessárias; ele ainda tenta forçar a retomada da atividade econômica sem controlar o vírus. Com a economia em crise, ele assinou uma rodada inicial de ajuda aos americanos que perderam seus empregos. Então o mercado de ações se recuperou e, embora milhões continuassem desempregados, Trump perdeu o interesse em sua situação. Em setembro, ele declarou que o vírus “não afeta virtualmente ninguém” um dia antes de o número de mortos pela doença nos Estados Unidos chegar a 200.000. Nove dias depois, o Sr. Trump adoeceu. As fundações da sociedade civil americana estavam desmoronando antes que Trump descesse a escada rolante da Trump Tower em junho de 2015 para anunciar sua campanha presidencial. Mas ele intensificou as piores tendências na política americana: sob sua liderança, a nação se tornou mais polarizada, mais paranóica e mesquinha. Ele colocou os americanos uns contra os outros, dominando novas mídias de transmissão como Twitter e Facebook para reunir seus apoiadores em torno de uma fogueira virtual de queixas e inundar a praça pública com mentiras, desinformação e propaganda. Ele é implacável em sua difamação dos oponentes e relutante em condenar a violência daqueles que considera aliados. No primeiro debate presidencial em setembro, Trump foi convidado a condenar os supremacistas brancos. Ele respondeu instruindo uma gangue violenta, os Proud Boys, para “recuar e aguardar”. Ele minou a fé no governo como um veículo para mediar diferenças e chegar a acordos. Ele exige lealdade absoluta dos funcionários do governo, sem levar em conta o interesse público. Ele despreza abertamente a perícia. E ele montou um ataque ao Estado de Direito, usando sua autoridade como um instrumento para garantir seu próprio poder e punir oponentes políticos. Em junho, seu governo injetou gás lacrimogêneo e liberou manifestantes pacíficos de uma rua em frente à Casa Branca para que Trump posasse com um livro que não lê em frente a uma igreja que não frequenta. O escopo total de sua má conduta pode levar décadas para vir à tona. Mas o que já se sabe é suficientemente chocante: Ele resistiu à supervisão legal por parte de outros ramos do governo federal. A administração rotineiramente desafia as ordens judiciais, e o Sr. Trump repetidamente instruiu os funcionários do governo a não testemunharem perante o Congresso ou fornecerem documentos, incluindo as declarações de impostos do Sr. Trump. Com a ajuda do procurador-geral William Barr, ele protegeu da justiça assessores leais. Em maio, o Departamento de Justiça disse que retiraria a acusação do ex-conselheiro de segurança nacional de Trump, Michael Flynn, embora Flynn tivesse se confessado culpado de mentir para o F.B.I. Em julho, o Sr. Trump comutou a sentença de outro ex-assessor, Roger Stone, que foi condenado por obstruir uma investigação federal da campanha eleitoral de 2016 do Sr. Trump. O senador Mitt Romney, republicano de Utah, condenou acertadamente a comutação como um ato de “corrupção histórica sem precedentes”. No ano passado, Trump pressionou o governo ucraniano a anunciar uma investigação de seu principal rival político, Joe Biden, e então ordenou aos funcionários do governo que obstruíssem uma investigação do Congresso sobre suas ações. Em dezembro de 2019, a Câmara dos Representantes votou pelo impeachment de Trump por crimes graves e contravenções. Mas os republicanos do Senado, com exceção de Romney, votaram para absolver o presidente, ignorando a corrupção de Trump para prosseguir com o projeto de encher as bancadas do judiciário federal com advogados jovens e conservadores como uma barreira contra o governo da maioria. Agora, com outros líderes republicanos, Trump está montando uma campanha agressiva para reduzir o número de americanos que votam e o número de cédulas que são contadas. O presidente, que há muito espalha acusações infundadas de fraude eleitoral generalizada, intensificou seus ataques retóricos nos últimos meses, especialmente contra cédulas enviadas pelo correio. “O resultado da eleição de 3 de novembro NUNCA PODE SER DETERMINADO COM PRECISÃO”, ele tuitou. O próprio presidente votou pelo correio e não há evidências que sustentem suas afirmações. Mas a campanha de desinformação serve como justificativa para expurgar listas de eleitores, fechar locais de votação, lançar votos de ausentes e impedir os americanos de exercer o direito de voto. É um ataque intolerável às próprias bases da experiência americana de governo do povo. Outros presidentes modernos se comportaram ilegalmente ou tomaram decisões catastróficas. Richard Nixon usou o poder do estado contra seus oponentes políticos. Ronald Reagan ignorou a disseminação da AIDS. Bill Clinton foi acusado de mentir e obstrução da justiça. George W. Bush levou a nação à guerra sob falsos pretextos. O Sr. Trump ultrapassou décadas de irregularidades presidenciais em um único mandato. Frederick Douglass lamentou durante outra das horas sombrias da nação, a presidência de Andrew Johnson: “Devemos ter nosso governo moldado de forma que, mesmo quando nas mãos de um homem mau, estaremos seguros.” Mas essa não é a natureza da nossa democracia. O otimismo implícito da democracia americana é que a saúde da República depende do julgamento do eleitorado e da integridade dos eleitores escolhidos. O Sr. Trump é um homem sem integridade. Ele violou repetidamente seu juramento de preservar, proteger e defender a Constituição dos Estados Unidos. Agora, neste momento de perigo, cabe ao povo americano – mesmo àqueles que prefeririam um presidente republicano – preservar, proteger e defender os Estados Unidos pelo voto.–
Donald Trump’s re-election campaign poses the greatest threat to American democracy since World War II.Mr. Trump’s ruinous tenure already has gravely damaged the United States at home and around the world. He has abused the power of his office and denied the legitimacy of his political opponents, shattering the norms that have bound the nation together for generations. He has subsumed the public interest to the profitability of his business and political interests. He has shown a breathtaking disregard for the lives and liberties of Americans. He is a man unworthy of the office he holds.The editorial board does not lightly indict a duly elected president. During Mr. Trump’s term, we have called out his racism and his xenophobia. We have critiqued his vandalism of the postwar consensus, a system of alliances and relationships around the globe that cost a great many lives to establish and maintain. We have, again and again, deplored his divisive rhetoric and his malicious attacks on fellow Americans. Yet when the Senate refused to convict the president for obvious abuses of power and obstruction, we counseled his political opponents to focus their outrage on defeating him at the ballot box.Nov. 3 can be a turning point. This is an election about the country’s future, and what path its citizens wish to choose.
Donald Trump’s re-election campaign poses the greatest threat to American democracy since World War II.Mr. Trump’s ruinous tenure already has gravely damaged the United States at home and around the world. He has abused the power of his office and denied the legitimacy of his political opponents, shattering the norms that have bound the nation together for generations. He has subsumed the public interest to the profitability of his business and political interests. He has shown a breathtaking disregard for the lives and liberties of Americans. He is a man unworthy of the office he holds.The editorial board does not lightly indict a duly elected president. During Mr. Trump’s term, we have called out his racism and his xenophobia. We have critiqued his vandalism of the postwar consensus, a system of alliances and relationships around the globe that cost a great many lives to establish and maintain. We have, again and again, deplored his divisive rhetoric and his malicious attacks on fellow Americans. Yet when the Senate refused to convict the president for obvious abuses of power and obstruction, we counseled his political opponents to focus their outrage on defeating him at the ballot box.Nov. 3 can be a turning point. This is an election about the country’s future, and what path its citizens wish to choose.The resilience of American democracy has been sorely tested by Mr. Trump’s first term. Four more years would be worse.But even as Americans wait to vote in lines that stretch for blocks through their towns and cities, Mr. Trump is engaged in a full-throated assault on the integrity of that essential democratic process. Breaking with all of his modern predecessors, he has refused to commit to a peaceful transfer of power, suggesting that his victory is the only legitimate outcome, and that if he does not win, he is ready to contest the judgment of the American people in the courts or even on the streets.
Kathleen Kingsbury, acting editorial page editor, wrote about the editorial board’s verdict on Donald Trump’s presidency in a special edition of our Opinion Today newsletter. You can read it here.The enormity and variety of Mr.Trump’s misdeeds can feel overwhelming. Repetition has dulled the sense of outrage, and the accumulation of new outrages leaves little time to dwell on the particulars. This is the moment when Americans must recover that sense of outrage.It is the purpose of this special section of the Sunday Review to remind readers why Mr. Trump is unfit to lead the nation. It includes a series of essays focused on the Trump administration’s rampant corruption, celebrations of violence, gross negligence with the public’s health and incompetent statecraft. A selection of iconic images highlights the president’s record on issues like climate, immigration, women’s rights and race.The urgency of these essays speaks for itself. The repudiation of Mr. Trump is the first step in repairing the damage he has done. But even as we write these words, Mr. Trump is salting the field — and even if he loses, reconstruction will require many years and tears.Mr. Trump stands without any real rivals as the worst American president in modern history. In 2016, his bitter account of the nation’s ailments struck a chord with many voters. But the lesson of the last four years is that he cannot solve the nation’s pressing problems because he is the nation’s most pressing problem.He is a racist demagogue presiding over an increasingly diverse country; an isolationist in an interconnected world; a showman forever boasting about things he has never done, and promising to do things he never will.He has shown no aptitude for building, but he has managed to do a great deal of damage. He is just the man for knocking things down.As the world runs out of time to confront climate change, Mr. Trump has denied the need for action, abandoned international cooperation and attacked efforts to limit emissions.He has mounted a cruel crackdown on both legal and illegal immigration without proposing a sensible policy for determining who should be allowed to come to the United States.Obsessed with reversing the achievements of his immediate predecessor, Barack Obama, he has sought to persuade both Congress and the courts to get rid of the Affordable Care Act without proposing any substitute policy to provide Americans with access to affordable health care. During the first three years of his administration, the number of Americans without health insurance increased by 2.3 million — a number that has surely grown again as millions of Americans have lost their jobs this year.He campaigned as a champion of ordinary workers, but he has governed on behalf of the wealthy. He promised an increase in the federal minimum wage and fresh investment in infrastructure; he delivered a round of tax cuts that mostly benefited rich people. He has indiscriminately erased regulations, and answered the prayers of corporations by suspending enforcement of rules he could not easily erase. Under his leadership, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has stopped trying to protect consumers and the Environmental Protection Agency has stopped trying to protect the environment.He has strained longstanding alliances while embracing dictators like North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and Russia’s Vladimir Putin, whom Mr. Trump treats with a degree of warmth and deference that defies explanation. He walked away from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a strategic agreement among China’s neighbors intended to pressure China to conform to international standards. In its place, Mr. Trump has conducted a tit-for-tat trade war, imposing billions of dollars in tariffs — taxes that are actually paid by Americans — without extracting significant concessions from China.Mr. Trump’s inadequacies as a leader have been on particularly painful display during the coronavirus pandemic. Instead of working to save lives, Mr. Trump has treated the pandemic as a public relations problem. He lied about the danger, challenged the expertise of public health officials and resisted the implementation of necessary precautions; he is still trying to force the resumption of economic activity without bringing the virus under control.As the economy pancaked, he signed an initial round of aid for Americans who lost their jobs. Then the stock market rebounded and, even though millions remained out of work, Mr. Trump lost interest in their plight.In September, he declared that the virus “affects virtually nobody” the day before the death toll from the disease in the United States topped 200,000.Nine days later, Mr. Trump fell ill.
TWITTER CHAT Binyamin Appelbaum discussed this editorial on Twitter.The foundations of American civil society were crumbling before Mr. Trump rode down the escalator of Trump Tower in June 2015 to announce his presidential campaign. But he has intensified the worst tendencies in American politics: Under his leadership, the nation has grown more polarized, more paranoid and meaner.He has pitted Americans against each other, mastering new broadcast media like Twitter and Facebook to rally his supporters around a virtual bonfire of grievances and to flood the public square with lies, disinformation and propaganda. He is relentless in his denigration of opponents and reluctant to condemn violence by those he regards as allies. At the first presidential debate in September, Mr. Trump was asked to condemn white supremacists. He responded by instructing one violent gang, the Proud Boys, to “stand back and stand by.”He has undermined faith in government as a vehicle for mediating differences and arriving at compromises. He demands absolute loyalty from government officials, without regard to the public interest. He is openly contemptuous of expertise.And he has mounted an assault on the rule of law, wielding his authority as an instrument to secure his own power and to punish political opponents. In June, his administration tear-gassed and cleared peaceful protesters from a street in front of the White House so Mr. Trump could pose with a book he does not read in front of a church he does not attend.The full scope of his misconduct may take decades to come to light. But what is already known is sufficiently shocking:He has resisted lawful oversight by the other branches of the federal government. The administration routinely defies court orders, and Mr. Trump has repeatedly directed administration officials not to testify before Congress or to provide documents, notably including Mr. Trump’s tax returns.With the help of Attorney General William Barr, he has shielded loyal aides from justice. In May, the Justice Department said it would drop the prosecution of Mr. Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn even though Mr. Flynn had pleaded guilty to lying to the F.B.I. In July, Mr. Trump commuted the sentence of another former aide, Roger Stone, who was convicted of obstructing a federal investigation of Mr. Trump’s 2016 election campaign. Senator Mitt Romney, Republican of Utah, rightly condemned the commutation as an act of “unprecedented, historic corruption.”Last year, Mr. Trump pressured the Ukrainian government to announce an investigation of his main political rival, Joe Biden, and then directed administration officials to obstruct a congressional inquiry of his actions. In December 2019, the House of Representatives voted to impeach Mr. Trump for high crimes and misdemeanors. But Senate Republicans, excepting Mr. Romney, voted to acquit the president, ignoring Mr. Trump’s corruption to press ahead with the project of filling the benches of the federal judiciary with young, conservative lawyers as a firewall against majority rule.Now, with other Republican leaders, Mr. Trump is mounting an aggressive campaign to reduce the number of Americans who vote and the number of ballots that are counted.The president, who has long spread baseless charges of widespread voter fraud, has intensified his rhetorical attacks in recent months, especially on ballots submitted by mail. “The Nov 3rd Election result may NEVER BE ACCURATELY DETERMINED,” he tweeted. The president himself has voted by mail, and there is no evidence to support his claims. But the disinformation campaign serves as a rationale for purging voter rolls, closing polling places, tossing absentee ballots and otherwise impeding Americans from exercising the right to vote.It is an intolerable assault on the very foundations of the American experiment in government by the people.Other modern presidents have behaved illegally or made catastrophic decisions. Richard Nixon used the power of the state against his political opponents. Ronald Reagan ignored the spread of AIDS. Bill Clinton was impeached for lying and obstruction of justice. George W. Bush took the nation to war under false pretenses.Mr. Trump has outstripped decades of presidential wrongdoing in a single term.Frederick Douglass lamented during another of the nation’s dark hours, the presidency of Andrew Johnson, “We ought to have our government so shaped that even when in the hands of a bad man, we shall be safe.” But that is not the nature of our democracy. The implicit optimism of American democracy is that the health of the Republic rests on the judgment of the electorate and the integrity of those voters choose.Mr. Trump is a man of no integrity. He has repeatedly violated his oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.Now, in this moment of peril, it falls to the American people — even those who would prefer a Republican president — to preserve, protect and defend the United States by voting.
CAROLINE GIULIANI – VANITY FAIR
FOR BIDEN /HARRIS
“END THIS WORLD OF TERROR CREATED BY TRUMP”
I have a difficult confession—something I usually save for at least the second date. My father is Rudy Giuliani. We are multiverses apart, politically and otherwise. I’ve spent a lifetime forging an identity in the arts separate from my last name, so publicly declaring myself as a “Giuliani” feels counterintuitive, but I’ve come to realize that none of us can afford to be silent right now. The stakes are too high. I accept that most people will start reading this piece because you saw the headline with my father’s name. But now that you’re here, I’d like to tell you how urgent I think this moment is.
To anyone who feels overwhelmed or apathetic about this election, there is nothing I relate to more than desperation to escape corrosive political discourse. As a child, I saw firsthand the kind of cruel, selfish politics that Donald Trump has now inflicted on our country. It made me want to run as far away from them as possible. But trust me when I tell you: Running away does not solve the problem. We have to stand and fight. The only way to end this nightmare is to vote. There is hope on the horizon, but we’ll only grasp it if we elect Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.
Around the age of 12, I would occasionally get into debates with my father, probably before I was emotionally equipped to handle such carnage. It was disheartening to feel how little power I had to change his mind, no matter how logical and above-my-pay-grade my arguments were. He always found a way to justify his party line, whatever it was at the time. Even though he was considered socially moderate for a Republican back in the day, we still often butted heads. When I tried to explain my belief that you don’t get to be considered benevolent on LGBTQ+ rights just because you have gay friends but don’t support gay marriage, I distinctly remember him firing back with an intensity fit for an opposing politican rather than one’s child. To be clear, I’m not sharing this anecdote to complain or criticize. I had an extremely privileged childhood and am grateful for everything I was given, including real-world lessons and complicated experiences like these. The point is to illustrate one of the many reasons I have a fraught relationship with politics, like so many of us do.
Even when there was an occasional flash of connection in these disagreements with my dad, it felt like nothing changed for the better, so I would retreat again until another issue I couldn’t stay silent on surfaced. Over the years other subjects like racial sensitivity (or lack thereof), sexism, policing, and the social safety net have all risen to this boiling point in me. It felt important to speak my mind, and I’m glad we at least managed to communicate at all. But the chasm was painful nonetheless, and has gotten exponentially more so in Trump’s era of chest-thumping partisan tribalism. I imagine many Americans can relate to the helpless feeling this confrontation cycle created in me, but we are not helpless. I may not be able to change my father’s mind, but together, we can vote this toxic administration out of office.
Trump and his enablers have used his presidency to stoke the injustice that already permeated our society, taking it to dramatically new, Bond-villain heights. I am a filmmaker in the LGBTQ+ community who tells stories about mental health, sexuality, and other stigmatized issues, and my goal is to humanize people and foster empathy. So I hope you’ll believe me when I say that another Trump term (a term, itself, that makes me cringe) will irrevocably harm the LGBTQ+ community, among many others. His administration asked the Supreme Court to let businesses fire people for being gay or trans, pushed a regulation to let health care providers refuse services to people who are LGTBQ+, and banned trans people from serving their country in the military.
Women, immigrants, people with disabilities, and people of color are all also under attack by Trump’s inhumane policies—and by his judicial appointments, including, probably, Amy Coney Barrett. Trump’s administration has torn families apart in more ways than I even imagined were possible, from ripping children from their parents at the border to mishandling the coronavirus, which has resulted in over 215,000 in the U.S. dying, many thousands of them without their loved ones near. Faced with preventable deaths during a pandemic that Trump downplayed and ignored, rhetoric that has fed deep-seated, systemic racism, and chaos in the White House, it’s no surprise that so many Americans feel as hopeless and overwhelmed as I did growing up. But if we refuse to face our political reality, we don’t stand a chance of changing it.
In 2016, I realized I needed to speak out in a more substantial way than just debating my dad in private (especially since I wasn’t getting anywhere with that), so I publicly supported Hillary Clinton and began canvassing for congressional candidates. If the unrelenting deluge of devastating news makes you think I’m crazy for having hope, please remember that making us feel powerless is a tactic politicians use to make us think our voices and votes don’t matter. But they do. It’s taken persistence and nerve to find my voice in politics, and I’m using it now to ask you to stand with me in the fight to end Donald Trump’s reign of terror.
If being the daughter of a polarizing mayor who became the president’s personal bulldog has taught me anything, it is that corruption starts with “yes-men” and women, the cronies who create an echo chamber of lies and subservience to maintain their proximity to power. We’ve seen this ad nauseam with Trump and his cadre of high-level sycophants (the ones who weren’t convicted, anyway).
What inspires me most about Vice President Biden is that he is not afraid to surround himself with people who disagree with him. Choosing Senator Harris, who challenged him in the primary, speaks volumes about what an inclusive president he will be. Biden is willing to incorporate the views of progressive-movement leaders like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren on issues like universal health care, student debt relief, prison reform, and police reform. And he is capable of reaching across the aisle to find moments of bipartisanship. The very notion of “bipartisanship” may seem painfully ludicrous right now, but we need a path out of impenetrable gridlock and vicious sniping. In Joe Biden, we’ll have a leader who prioritizes common ground and civility over alienation, bullying, and scorched-earth tactics.
Speaking of scorched earth, I know many people feel paralyzed by climate despair. I do too, but something still can and must be done. As climate change begins to encroach on our everyday lives, it is clear that our planet cannot survive four more years of this administration’s environmental assault. This monumental challenge requires scientifically literate leadership and immediate action. Joe Biden has laid out an aggressive series of plans to restore the environmental regulations that Trump gutted on behalf of his corporate polluting friends. Biden has a transformational clean-energy policy that he will bring to Congress within his first 100 days in office, and perhaps most crucially, he brings a desire and capability to reunite the major nations of the world in forging a path toward a global green future.
I fully understand that some of you want a nominee who is more progressive. For others the idea of voting for a Democrat of any kind may be a hurdle. Now I have another confession to make. Biden wasn’t my first choice when the primaries started. But I know what is at stake, and Joe Biden will be everyone’s president if elected. If you are planning to cast a symbolic vote or abstain from voting altogether, please reconsider. It is more important than ever to avoid complacency. This election is far from over, and if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that anything can happen.
We are hanging by a single, slipping finger on a cliff’s edge, and the fall will be fatal. If we remove ourselves from the fight, our country will be in freefall. Alternatively, we can hang on, elect a compassionate and decent president, and claw our way back onto the ledge. If I, after decades of despair over politics, can engage in our democracy to meet this critical moment, I know you can too.