Is American Democracy Eroding?


democracy-erodingTo say this political season has brought us much angst, would be the biggest understatement of the year. They say a day in a political campaign is like a lifetime. If this is true, then we have all aged considerably this election cycle with seven more lifetimes to come this week.

Now the unsettling events of the past few days may have uprooted more than a presidential race; it may shred the very fabric of our institutions that have held this nation together for so long. The institutions under attack; an independent and fair media, the forthright and honorable FBI, a Justice Department beyond reproach, and the integrity of a national election that puts into question our voting systems.

Are these institutions teetering on the brink?  Is America like Humpty humpty-dumptyDumpty? Sitting high on the wall for all the world to see and all to watch fall? Can we put America back together again after this election? Only time will tell.

Are we living through a Shakespearian drama or comedy? Is it like the line from Hamlet, “The lady doth protest too much, methinks”? Or is it more like the comedy Much Ado About Nothing? The decision is yours. And at the risk of sounding one sided (which I’m not), none of this would matter if there hadn’t been a private server.

Last week I wrote an article entitled, On 11/9 We Will Not Lose Our Republic. In it I mention that “we are a divided nation, but like the phoenix bird we will rise from the ashes of this divisive, bitter and mostly ugly campaign.” This week the electorate has become further fractured, leerier, and more obtuse as to what happens post-election returns. The loser may blame different institutions for their failure. The pro-Trump camp could; (a.) attack the media as a propaganda machine bent to the opposite side, and (b.) question the integrity of the election operations and voting system.  The pro-Clinton camp could: (a.) attack FBI director, James Comey, for his bad judgement for interfering 10 days prior to an election, and (b.) challenge the Justice Department for not stepping in to stop Director Comey. Both would complaint that the system is rigged against them.

We ask candidates to lead and inspire us as a nation.  They have not.  It is almost as if they have become aroused, all knowing, all powerful demigods who are unintelligibly using vitriol and hatred as their vice. How can this do our country any good? Will this cause a permanent erosion of American democracy?

Hopefully sometime early on Wednesday, November 9th we will have a president – elect. One will win and one will lose. Will the candidates accept the results? And more importantly, will the citizens accept the results? Will we, the citizens, work to heal a divided nation?

Last week, I wrote,” After this election day, we Americans must hang together for the good of our collective futures.” Part of being a good citizen is understanding our important role in moving past this election regardless of the outcome. We need to be united as a people, as a community and as a country.  We have big issues to solve. We have enemies both foreign and domestic. We need more jobs and better wages. We need a better transportation system.  We need a better health care system. And list goes on and on and on.

Can we, as citizens, play a role in solving these problems? Can we put America back together again? Can we stop the erosion of American democracy? Yes, we can. However, we need to stay educated, better informed, more engaged and then actively supporting the issues and causes that keep us moving forward. Post – election, I will begin laying out how we can achieve better results through better advocacy efforts.

I promise to do my part, so help me god!

Here is a link to the article mentioned above, entitled, On 11/9 We Will Not Lose Our Republic.

 

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