by John Bossange
It’s time to take seriously the very real possibility that Donald Trump could be our next president. The old, traditional GOP and any Republican independent candidates will collapse around Trump, and he will run fully supported as the “MAGA” candidate. Trump could run and win even if he is a convicted felon, and sent to jail. That won’t stop millions of Americans from voting for him, and there is no law-preventing Trump from becoming our next president from a jail cell. Yes, it could happen here if we do not all become activists. It will be our votes, not any court decisions, that will save our democracy and the environment.
And so, 2024 will be a pivotal year in American history. We have survived world wars, famines, financial collapses, riots in the streets, a civil war, presidential assassinations, and other traumatic events, and in the end, reason, courage, and truth prevailed, and saved our fragile democracy. The nation is at a new tipping point now, and we all need to consider what actions we each need to take to be sure our democracy survives.
Unfortunately today, we have two existential crises to deal with at once; the future of our democracy and the institutions developed over 245 years to support it, and a worldwide climate crisis pushing us towards a catastrophic end before the middle of this century. Both the survival of our nation and of the planet have never been linked as they are now.
Voting in the next presidential election is critical to saving our nation’s democratic foundations and to lead the world away from the destruction of the earth’s life support systems from the continued use of fossil fuels. By voting, I mean in percentages that don’t place us between Greece and Columbia, where we still ranked 31st when compared with 49 other nations who had presidential elections in 2020.
It is true that voting percentages dramatically improved in the highly charged 2020 national election where the range was 51% for the youngest group and 76% for those older Americans. That was an unprecedented and encouraging trend. Still, overall only 67% of all Americans voted, while 33%, or 80,000,000, stayed home.
Voting in much larger, overwhelming numbers in 2024 means believing the ballot box is the best way to prevent political conspirators and climate crisis deniers from continuing to take us down the pathway of political and environmental suicide. Tragically, before the planet becomes inhabitable within two decades, our nation may be in a similar condition after two years. An America under Trump will take us back to the days of a century ago, and few today would want to live during the dreadful days of 1923, when the Klan and unregulated corporations ruled the nation with an iron fist.
As it stands now, the presidential election of 2024 will feature a Democratic Party candidate Joe Biden, a yet to be announced candidate from the traditional (GOP) Republican Party, possibly a few unaffiliated independent candidates representing no party, and a candidate from the newly formed MAGA Party, Donald Trump, who has been president, was defeated for a second term, and is now seeking re-election.
With so much at stake, Americans need to rise above their disappointment and cynicism to make sure no independent candidate can act as a spoiler, and ensure the MAGA Party candidate does not occupy the White House. More Americans must become informed on the issues, and have the courage to speak up and advocate for our democracy and the preservation of the environment. This will slow down the momentum of the Trump campaign, which is advocating for just the opposite.
Voting in massive numbers never before seen in America must be our line in the sand to keep Donald Trump out of the White House. His tribal cult will follow him with blinders. They yearn to identify with messages of blame to excuse their own failings and many listen to multiple conspiracy messages of victimhood to feel supported. Dictators from all countries past and present began as cult leaders, as Donald Trump has done here.
America needs true patriots to defeat the MAGA cult to prevent a dictatorship with designs on tearing apart our nation’s democracy and ignoring the climate crisis. A proud American should be an activist, never forgetting about our responsibility to vote, and the privilege to live in a country that gives us that right. There can be no more excuses. The MAGA Party’s Electoral College scam has been fully revealed and new federal regulations should prevent MAGA Party controlled state legislatures from trying to render their states popular vote insignificant again.
“Democracy is not a spectator sport,” my old bumper sticker said. That was decades ago, and unfortunately that warning is truer now than it was back then. Today we all need to become motivated, informed and bold advocates for our fragile democracy and environment. Being a spectator is no longer an option. The future of our children and grandchildren rests on our activism today.