Saturday, January 21, 2017

The Violence Is Wrong And MUST Stop

(Photo of inauguration demonstrations is by Adrees Latif/ Reuters.)

Donald Trump is now our president -- and in my opinion, a dark time has descended on the United States. With Trump as president and the Republicans controlling Congress we can expect human rights and civil rights (including voting rights) to take a back seat (and probably further curtailed). Corporations and the rich will receive massive new tax cuts, and many regulations controlling them will disappear. It will be a bad time for consumers, because those regulations protected them from corporate abuse.

There won't be a minimum wage raise to a livable wage. There will be huge new cuts to programs that help needy Americans (to pay for the tax cuts for the rich and corporations). And we can expect unemployment to remain well above 4% (because tax cuts for the rich and corporations don't create new jobs). We can also expect dirtier air and water, and for the global climate change to get worse (as Trump and the GOP put corporate profits above saving the planet).

But none of the above justifies the use of violence. And that is what happened in Washington, D.C., after Trump was sworn in. At least 95 demonstrators were arrested, and some sent to the hospital along with a couple of police officers. That is inexcusable.

It really doesn't matter whether the violence was started by some demonstrators (which seems to be the case), or incited by the police (which is a possibility). It is just wrong. And it will be used as an excuse by Trump and his trumpistas to initiate a backlash against liberals and leftists in this country (even though most are very peaceful).

Violence is never a solution to any problem. It just causes more problems for everyone. We must remember some lessons from history -- lessons taught by Gandhi and his followers, Dr. King and his followers, and the freedom riders of the 1960's. They knew that violence would only hurt their cause -- even if that violence was a reaction to violence directed at them. And their nonviolence won in the end.

It is right to demonstrate against Trump and his Republican buddies in Congress. Their plans will seriously hurt this country, and must be opposed. But that opposition must be nonviolent. We must come together, but it must be done in a way that doesn't give the right a claim to victimhood or an excuse for their own violence.

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