The Unfathomable Weight Of Official Secrets

There is no doubt that there are many secrets that must be kept in order for America to survive and thrive in a challenging world that is rife with official secrets.  All countries have them.  These secrets are not just expected to be kept but, indeed, demanded to be kept with the threat of severe punishment being held over the heads of anyone who would dare to share them with anyone outside of authorized circles.  And even within those authorized circles there is a “need to know” stipulation that is closely adhered to meaning that anyone who has the required clearance level and happens to stumble upon information during the course of their work responsibilities is also expected to adhere to this “need to know” stipulation.

The weight of maintaining these secrets falls on those employed from the highest levels of government to the lowest levels; from the President of the United States of America to the janitor or laborer with a high-level clearance who might be passing through or working in the office of someone with the highest level of clearance and by chance sees communications in a secret or top secret document.  While the weight of maintaining these official secrets is weighty for all of those who hold or have ever held a government clearance, the weight of maintaining these secrets and making decisions based on them is unfathomable for the person leading our country; The President of the United States of America.

I do not envy any of those who hold those positions but I especially would not want to be in the position of the President because he or she is the final arbiter who must make life or death decisions based on these secrets which contain information that oftentimes may fall into extremely gray areas.  And although those decisions might be based on secret information that skirts the very outer edges of those gray areas – or go beyond them, he or she must consider the big picture and the long view of what is in the best interest of the American people and the overall free world.  He or she makes many decisions that – if we knew how convoluted his or her decision-making had to be to arrive at what was in the best interest of the American people, America, and the free world – likely most of us as laymen would find it distasteful and bitterly complain about it.  However, if the president did not make those decisions and as a result in the long run the lack of making those decisions impacted negatively on the American people and America, we would bitterly complain…and maybe even vote them out of office.

But these are among the kind of decisions that the President of the United States of America must make.  These would normally be agonizing decisions for any American president: But this does not appear to be the case with the current Mr. Donald J. Trump of the United States of America.  The President of the United States of America does not take these official secret so lightly that they would blurt them out to just anyone, let alone an adversary.  The President of the United States of America does not trash our allies and cozy up to strongmen; the President of the United States of America does not stand shoulder-to-shoulder with an adversary of the United States and take their side against the United States of America’s intelligence community; the President of the United States of America does not work tirelessly and relentlessly to tear down the great institutions of the United States which are an intricate part of the very foundation of our great, although fledging, democracy; the President of the United States of America does not trash the Constitution and thump their nose at co-equal branches of government and American people; the President of the United States of America does take joy in saying cruel things about American heroes, his fellow government officials and the American people at large just to get a laugh; the President of the United States of America does not spout Russian propaganda to the American people and encourage members of congress and others to do the same; the President of the United States of America does not spend every day in office working to divide the American people instead of to bring us together!  The Mr. Donald J. Trump of the United States of America does all of these things!

The impeachment of a president is a sad day in America even when such impeachment is necessary and well deserved.  And that is why it is so demoralizing and painfully sad to witness virtually every Republican in congress side with Mr. Trump and circle the wagons around him when they all know that he deserves to be impeached.  We know that they know this because none of them are trying to defend him based on evidence but, instead, they are defending him based on what they say they believe is an unfair process.  And even in defending him based on this so-called unfair process, it is painfully obvious that they are acutely aware that what they are engaged in is unadulterated sophistry.  The fact that the Republicans doing this only supports and advances what is clearly an existential threat to our democracy is sufficient reason as to why all of the American people whether they are Democrats, Republicans or Independents must come together and insist that our elected representatives vote to remove the Mr. Donald J. Trump of the United States of America from office.

All Americans can and should be involved in deciding whether or not Mr. Trump is guilty of the charges that have been leveled against him and whether or not he should be removed from office.  This decision cannot wait until the 2020 election by virtue of the fact that an effort to rig the 2020 election in his favor with the help of a foreign country is among the charges leveled against him.  Even if Mr. Trump is removed from office there will still be an election in 2020.  But to help assure that it will be a fair one and be viewed and accepted as fair by the American people, it should not in good conscience take place without a final decision on Mr. Trump’s status.

Finally, no matter which side of this argument that you support, always remember, your vote is the most important one of all…unless you don’t use it!  So despite any roadblocks that are placed in your path you must be completely determined to surmount them and vote in the 2020 election.  The fate of our democracy is in your hands!

Eulus Dennis –author, Operation Rubik’s Cube and Living Between The Line

A Democracy Cries Out For Justice

A democracy cries out for justice but will anyone hear her?  There are plenty of people listening but is anyone actually hearing and will anyone hear her?  America is listening, Democrats are listening, Republicans are listening and Independents are listening but will any of these listeners actually hear her?  Or are we – the American people, too busy with kitchen table items and other things in our daily lives to actually hear the cries of this fledgling (less than 250 years old) democracy?  Are the Washington congressional Democrats too busy thinking about getting reelected to hear her?  Are the Washington congressional Republicans too busy thinking about getting reelected to hear her?  Are the Washington congressional Independents too busy thinking about getting reelected to hear her?

States do not elect our federal politicians to go to Washington and check their brains at the door before they are sworn in as congressmen and congresswomen.  Sure they are supposed to represent their constituents but, since more often than not, they have access to information that we as their constituents do not have access to that allows them to be better informed on the facts of a situation than we are, they need to use their brains: we expect them to use their brains!  The American people do not expect these politicians to simply function as robots and act solely based on the polls; at least, I don’t.  And that is why they can’t check their brains at the door before being sworn in.  When we elect them we endow them with our trust and expect them to exercise good judgment, to the best of their ability, to do the right thing for our country and for us based upon all of the information that they have.

If our elected politicians fail to do this, if they fail to honor their oath and protect the Constitution and defend our country against all enemies – foreign and domestic – then what is the point; what is the point of them being there if they are not going to protect our democracy?  Far too much blood has been shed to sustain this democracy to allow anyone, regardless of their status or position in life, to undermine it.  That means that the impeachment of the Mr. Donald J. Trump of the United States of America is not about party, it is not about personal political ambition and keeping ones job but it is about our country and preserving our democracy as we now know it.

It is beyond disconcerting for me, and it is reasonable to assume for all of the American people, to witness what is happening in America right now; it is frightening!  People have circled the wagons of their chosen faction and retreated to their chosen sub-groups within that faction.  They are hunkered down and prepared for war.  What people are not prepared for is to engage in reasonable discourse and work together to save a democracy – our democracy – that is crying out for help; that is crying out for justice.  We are not prepared to do this because just like Mr. Trump has hollowed out the State Department and gummed up any other means of solving America’s problems short of war, he has divided the American people and hollowed out the hearts of far too many of them and rendered them incapable of thinking clearly.

The Mr. Donald J. Trump of the United States of America has proven and continues to prove that he is about dividing Americans, not bringing us together.  This is nothing new to him so he is extremely good at it.  He has so far lived his entire life this way and the odds are that he is not going to change.  This was not okay but it was to some degree acceptable for Mr. Trump as a private citizen.  But it is not okay for him as The Mr. Donald J. Trump of the United States of America and it is not to any degree acceptable.

Mr. Trump is the Mr. Donald J. Trump of the United states of America, yet his language and actions are more often like that of a street thug than that of the leader of America!  Court records suggest that Mr. Trump has committed multiple felonies and the fact that his once personal attorney, Michael Cohen is currently serving time for something that he did for “Individual One” serves to help substantiate that.  But for the fact that he is the Mr. Donald J. Trump of the United States of America Mr. Trump would likely have been charged with and convicted of multiple felonies and serving time in prison.

Mr. Trump should be bringing Americans together.  Instead, he has successfully led us into the alienation of our allies and the cozying up to strong men and our adversaries, he has appeared to advocate for white supremacy and successfully divided us based on race, he has been instrumental in furthering the polarization of America, he is arguably instrumental in emboldening racist and the rise in hate crimes and he is systematically withdrawing America from her leadership role in the world.

Mr. Trump is brazenly stripping America of her esteemed position of being looked upon by the free world as the beacon of freedom, justice, dignity and fairness.  He is in the process of smothering the torch on the Statue of Liberty in much the same way that he has smothered the meaningful, warm relationship that America once had with the ally that gifted that statue to us.  The American people must put a stop to the rotting of America; we must do everything in our power to assure that the politicians we elected and sent to Washington will impeach and remove Mr. Trump from office before he can do any further damage to this great democracy, America.

Eulus Dennis – author, Operation Rubik’s Cube and Living Between The Line