Let us unite to replace the “greater and lesser evil” with the good and just
BY Gulamhusein A. Abba
Today I mourn. Not because Hillary lost the election. I never wanted the “lesser evil” to win anyway. I mourn because the majority of the voters voted to the presidency of this great country a man not worthy of this honor. This is a sad reflection on what this country has become.
I, among others, advocated that people not vote for either Trump or Hillary because the parties they represent are for the rich and the powerful, the two arms of the same body, and the whole system as it stood -- and continues to stand -- was a con game of good cop, bad cop. The need was to bring into being, not only at the presidential level but also in the Senate and the House at the Centre, State governments and local bodies leaders of these bodies and legislators who are not beholden for their election funding to money moguls but get elected by the support of the common people like you and me and are committed to ensuring justice, equality and a fair deal for the long exploited poor and the voiceless.
There were many who agreed that both the dominant political parties were the agents of the Wall Street giants. They admitted that both, Trump and Hillary, were “evil”. But so afraid were they of Trump becoming the President that they urged the voters to hold their nose and vote for the “lesser evil”, arguing that a vote for an alternative party would not only be a waste but in in effect would contribute to Trump’s victory. They voted according to their fears not their conscience.
It turns out it is their vote that was a waste. Had they voted for an alternative party they would at least have contributed to laying the foundations for a truly people’s party committed to peace, justice and meeting the needs of the poor and the helpless.
The Democratic Party played a shrewd game. Hillary collected millions of dollars and support from the elites. Bernie mobilized and energized the young with his impassioned speeches. The Democratic Party, unknown to Bernie, actively favored Hillary over Bernie. Once Bernie was defeated in the Primaries, Democratic Party leaders set about ensuring that Berne and his aficionados would pose no problem to them.
Obama stepped in to help. He made a privately recorded video endorsing Hilary and sent it to her, without releasing it to the public or the media. He then made a personal call to Bernie, invited him to the White House and walked with him round the Colonnades, a rare honor. There he told Bernie of the video and urged him to throw his weight behind Hillary. That was enough to make Bernie succumb. He betrayed his supporters and endorsed the very woman whom he had so ruthlessly exposed during the Primaries. The least that he could have done is not ENDORSE Hillary and assure his loyal supporters that, as an Independent that he was, he would fight tooth and nail for the issues he had raised whoever won the election.
The lesson to be learnt is that it never pays to support “evil” out of fear as to the consequences that would follow if they did not. The guiding principle should always be to heed the voice of conscience.
We now hear talk of respecting our long tradition of accepting the outcome of the election, being “civil” to the man whom we rightly despised and reviled. This is nonsense.
It is our constitutionally guaranteed right to protest non-violently and make our voice heard. For that reason it is heartening to see that thousands poured into the streets all over the country soon after the election results became public, chanting “not our president!” The world needs to know that though the majority of the voters, voting out of fear, elected Trump as the President, there are millions in this country who do not approve of his being one.
In a strange way, Trump’s victory could very well turn out to be a blessing for the activists for justice, equality and freedom from the clutches of the rich and the powerful. They will realize the need to become more energized and more active in the revolution against the forces that have consigned them to living a hard and miserable life for so long.
To all those relatives and friends who held their nose and voted for Hillary, as those who out of disgust did not vote at all, I bear no anger. They did what they did because they felt it was necessary to do so out of an instinct for self-preservation. That they did so with holding their nose is proof that they knew what they were doing was wrong.
To all these relatives and friends I say that my heart aches with you. But we cannot let this crisis – for crisis it is – make us lose all hope and abandon the fight.
Instead, it is now time to wake up, see the realities and unite in the struggle, committed more than ever, to educate the people how beholden to the rich and the powerful are most of the legislators, both Republicans and Democrats, how they are the kept partners of the Wall Street moguls, how the one percenters rule the roost and how necessary it is to flush these legislators out of the legislatures and replace them with legislators who are mindful of the environment and the needs and aspirations of the long neglected common people.
Prison reform, environment, climate change, living wage, equal opportunity in higher education for all, health care, protecting Social Security, marriage equality, immigrant rights, Standing Rock, unending wars, support of tyrannical undemocratic powers and funding them lavishly and so many other, human rights and justice issues are crying out for attention.
We have our work cut out for us if we want to create a better world and make America REALLY great again.
Let the genuine, sustained, nonviolent, revolution begin, confident that though it may take more than a couple of election cycles to achieve our aims, victory will ultimately be ours.
Viva the struggle.