In yesterday’s press briefing, when asked about his plan to “reopen” the nation on or before May 1st, he had this to say …
“I have great authority to use it … I have absolute authority to use it …”
Yesterday, I read a great many news stories that riled me, raised my hackles, and one even caused me to shout an expletive. But none … not a single one … chilled me in the way this single sentence chills me. It’s that one word: absolute. No president has ‘absolute’ authority. Absolute is a word used by dictators and other authoritarians … it is not a word I expect to hear used by an elected official who has sworn an oath to uphold and defend the U.S. Constitution.
The framers of the Constitution, fully understanding the nature of men, wrote the document in such a way as to ensure that no president could become a king. Power is shared among the three equal branches of government, and both the legislative branch and the judicial branch are tasked with overseeing the executive branch.
That said, in 2016 the Republican Party, now largely bought and paid for by large corporations such as the fossil fuel, logging and weapons industries, sold the country downriver and through not-quite-honest means, put a person in the White House who has absolutely zero political experience, absolutely zero relevant education, and absolutely zero conscience. What he has an abundance of, however, are arrogance and ego.
It is that arrogance, that megalomania, that gives him the idea that he has absolute powers, and unfortunately neither Congress nor the Supreme Court seem willing to do their job and provide oversight, but rather feed his ego by essentially telling him that he is above the law, that they will uphold whatever he does. This sets up a very dangerous scenario that should never have been allowed to get to this point.
Ever since that day, February 5th 2020, when the republicans in the Senate one by one said “nay” to convicting Trump of the proven crimes for which he was (and remains) impeached, Trump has been taking upon himself more and more power, and both Congress and the Supreme Court have continued to give him carte blanche to do so. In so doing, it may be the case that they have signed the death warrant for the U.S. Constitution. They may have turned the presidency, an elected position answerable to the people of this nation, into a dictatorship, a position with “absolute authority”.
Two hundred and thirty-three years ago, the U.S. Constitution was written and ratified. Though it has undergone a number of amendments, and some controversial interpretations, for the most part the foundation has held firm for those 233 years. And today? Today we are on a precipice, on the very brink of burning the Constitution. Why? Because we have allowed politicians to be bought and paid for by wealthy industrialists seeking to become even wealthier.
We have one final opportunity to stop this in November. The Republican Party and all its minions will do everything in their power to prevent us from voting them out of office. If we succumb, if we don’t all vote, then we will have handed over the keys to the kingdom to the wealthy and I doubt we will get another chance to stop the Titanic before it hits the iceberg. Remember those words, “I have absolute authority”, think of all the things that could mean.