As I reflect on our country and our democracy, I find there are some positive things that have come out of this grim and disturbing first year of Trump’s presidency. Here are some hopeful events to keep in mind.
The latest polls show that Donald Trump has an incredibly low approval rating of 32%. Since so many courageous women have spoken up about sexual harassment, more Americans seem to be realizing that our current president would be disqualified from running a movie studio, a newsroom, or serving in the US congress, much less be president. Americans are not stupid or fooled by the lies and name-calling, racist remarks, and the instability of our president. The majority of Americans are rejecting the Trump agenda.
With their meticulous and factual reporting the news media is keeping the American public informed. And thank goodness the night time comedy and talk shows keep us laughing. CNN’s research tells us that our president lies or spouts fake news daily. As reported in The Washington Post, the Trump administration is prohibiting our top public health agency (the CDC) from using certain words in their reports. The banned words are: vulnerable, entitlement, diversity, transgender, fetus, evidence-based and science-based. This kind of censorship cannot win as long as we have a free press that keeps reporting the facts.
Citizen groups all over the US have organized and become involved in our democracy and are holding our elected officials accountable. More women are running for office than ever before in our history. The Trump agenda is being challenged on a grass roots level all over the country.
Some NFL players are exercising their right to peacefully protest the racist policies that are affecting their communities and are reminding us of the systemic racism that exists in our society. Their non-violent protests are at the heart of democracy…..our inalienable right of free speech.
Doug Jones is the new Democratic Senator from Alabama. The state of Alabama choose a man of character who campaigned for unity and bi-partisanship. Again, the Trump agenda lost.
Maybe having this divisive president and a Republican Party that is complicit by their silence will turn out to be a good thing. With so much renewed citizen engagement our democracy can only become more robust and inclusive.
A New Year’s resolution: let’s become more involved in our democratic process and expect our elected officials to listen and talk to us, their constituents. We can make a difference, and we have to believe that our nation is better, smarter, and kinder than this president .
Glenna PeterserSister Bay