Tuesday, October 20, 2020
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The Villages

Trump’s scheme to ignore popular vote a line you cannot cross

To the Editor:

I was over being shocked by President Trump’s statements; but, now this.
In a press interview, Trump was asked if there would be a peaceful transfer of power in January. Trump answered, “We’ll see. I have been complaining strongly about the ballots. The ballots are a disaster. We have to get rid of the ballots. Then there won’t be a transfer. “Wow! Is this how a democracy works? If you don’t like the outcome – just “get rid of the ballots”? This has got to be over the line, by far, way too far!
Although states are allowed to select their electors with few restrictions; virtually all use some form based on the popular vote. But, now, it appears some of the swing states like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin that have Republican governors and legislatures are considering ignoring their popular vote, alleging fraud in the ballots even before they are cast and then electing Trump friendly electors regardless of their popular vote, in order to win the Electoral College.
Apparently, that is the goal of all the rhetoric about mail-in ballots being bad (despite that the military uses them exclusively and at least a dozen states have done it for years). So, if you cannot win fair and square and the people have spoken against you, just ignore the people and steal the election, with the help of unethical Republican governors and of BFF Putin.
Some think it is media hype to warn us that our democracy is at risk. But, it does appear to be at least wounded by a thousand cuts. Anyone who has read history of the rise of dictators in South America, in Africa, in Southeast Asia, and the beginning of fascism in Italy in the 1930’s, has to recognize the similarities and same patterns here and now.
I know Trump supporters cannot recognize it and cannot admit to themselves that they are compromised or acting against our country. But, in World War II, there were Germans who did not hate or want the Jews exterminated. They told themselves they just wanted what Hitler offered in terms of the economy, of rebuilding German pride and German industry. Germany was in very poor shape after World War I. The people had suffered. That is when a people are most susceptible to the rise of a dictator – in bad times when people are afraid. Even when news of the concentration camps was leaking out; there were rumors and they turned a blind eye. After it was over and the horrible atrocities were revealed; the German people were still called Nazis and were looked on with disgust for decades afterwards. They said they didn’t know; but no one believed that.  In the future, when the damage to America’s proud institutions, our culture, our economy, our people, our way of life are fully revealed, Trump supporters may still be called “deplorables” and looked upon with disgust for decades afterwards, for turning a blind eye to the decay of our democracy, in exchange for conservative federal judges, or in exchange for promises to lessen their fear, which comfort and relief from fear never comes. Trump makes promises but only keeps them when it benefits himself or those he can use to benefit himself. It isn’t too late to let family and friends know you have seen the light and are no longer a Trump supporter, if a scheme to ignore the popular vote is a line you cannot cross.

Jerry Hudgens
Village of Poinciana

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