Why Ask ‘Why?’

By Puja

Seven months ago, I posted the following to Facebook:

Trump

All we have seen happen since is the increasing momentum of Mr. Drumpf‘s campaign. What is happening here? Why is a bigoted, uninformed, misogynist a front-runner to lead this nation? What the hell rest of America?

There are so many theories as to why Mr. Drumpf continues to resonate; he is not a part of those no-goodniks of The Establishment, he speaks the truth and doesn’t care about getting in trouble, he is “self-funding” his campaign, or whatever cockamamie reason some yokel citizen on the local news spouts off.  If you truly believe any of these reasons, I pity you and fear for me.

Are voters really buying that he is not part of The Establishment? Like really buying it? Really? He has been photographed with prominent members of both parties throughout his career, how is that something an outsider does? What outsider is always around the “insiders?”

Similarly, are Drumpf supporters serious about his ‘straight talk?’  Do we want someone in the most prestigious and powerful office in the land lacking all self-control? Someone whose first instinct is to attack a dissenter instead of working towards resolution would be an effective leader on The Walking Dead, not real life. Imagine if your boss went around and talked to you the way Mr. Drumpf has spoken to/about anyone who has disagreed with him. Also, Mr. Drumpf has said he wants to limit the reach of the first amendment to be strict on libel. So he can call people names and slurs, but he doesn’t want to be on the receiving end? Ok …that seems a little too close to totalitarian regimes. You know who else controls their press and punishes those who disagree? Kim Jong Un.

(Side note: Politico published this piece in January positing that Drumpf supporters are “authoritarians,” otherwise known as those who respond to and obey to authority. This is TERRIFYING to think about.)

Finally, the whole self-funding the campaign assertion has been proven to be bunch of malarkey.  He is loaning himself the money. I don’t want to get into a thing about campaign finance reform on this blog, mostly because I am not well-versed in the topic…and it is incredibly boring for this general interest blog.

So what do you do know if you are starting to have doubts as to whether Mr. Drumpf is qualified to hold the office of President? Start by asking “why?” Specifically, why was ___ said and why is it important to you that Mr. Drumpf represents your opinion about it?  Asking Why  is important because there are only a handful of reasons as to why Mr. Drumpf (or any politician, for that matter) says anything (1) someone asked him, (2) there is a camera in his face, (3) he is pandering for votes (likely because of #2 – pun intended), (4) he believes what he is saying provides viable solutions to problems, or (5) he has lost his mind and people are eating up his incoherence as policy rhetoric.

Now comes the hard part, once you’ve found the why, ask whether what is being said is the truth and whether you agree with the position asserted. A great example of this would be last week’s slow David Duke disavowal. Even if you couldn’t get past the why the disavowal was delayed, you can still ask yourself if you are comfortable with the message being sent by the tardiness/lack of condemnation by Mr. Drumpf of a known bigot? Was it a political strategy to not alienate a base that has rallied behind an anti-immigrant/minority sentiment for the last seven-plus months? Was it true that he couldn’t remember who David Duke was? Any answer feels like we are getting played, but that is the nature of modern politics. Things are murky on either side, you sometimes have to choose the proverbial lesser of two evils.

 

Drumpf
Photo by Scott Heppell/AP *  Art by Sisters In Law Blog

The simple truth of the matter is that Mr. Drumpf and his team of delusion peddling Death Eaters have exploited a disenfranchised group of voters with false promises of improving their lot in life. Have you heard of any concrete policy ideas on how America will become great again?  I can’t say that I have. Also, let’s not get started on the fact that America has only been “great” for a very specific demographic, one Mr. Drumpf happens to belong to, the ol’ ‘old white man.’ Sorry, society does NOT want to preserve a system designed to exclude and inhibit the masses in favor of a privileged few.

Scary stories are better when there is a slight possibility of the boogie man overpowering you. The boogieman derives his power from fear; a fear that you do not have what it takes to defeat him. Arm yourself with as much information as you can, strive to be a part of the informed electorate, never stop asking ‘why?’ These are things you should normally do, but are especially important if you want to nip tyranny in the bud. Who knows, this may be a moot point if the Republican National Convention decides to shake things up in July.  Either way, register to vote, its the only way to defeat the boogieman.


Things Keeping Me Sane This Week: First, today March 8th,  2016 is International Women’s Day!  Google dedicated a great doodle that can hopefully act as a conversation starter for women to talk about OUR futures with the “One Day I will/ there will be” tag. The official hashtag for International Women’s Day 2016 is #PledgeForParity. You can read about what it means to take the pledge here.  And because I know some of you are wondering, International Men’s Day is November 19th.

Second, I have the privilege of curating the Sisters in Law Blog daily Twitter honorees for Women’s History Month (@SILBlog2016).  There is a theme among the women featured, in that they are not all success stories or tales of overcoming. We have included women who also represent different types of systemic oppression, faced economic hardships, and often succumbed to brutal violence trying to change their lot in life. These are the ones who suffered long before someone said ‘we can’t take it anymore.’ These are the women history should not forget. Shout out to those asserting their rights to exist. Compiling this list makes me so grateful for what I have. We are lucky to be born in the time that we are, let us #PledgeForParity so future generations don’t have to rely on luck; it can be their norm.

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