Bring the president to task, but let’s stay on track with all our work — and keep it civil

PUTNEY — These are surely times that are testing our faith in ourselves, one another, and our democracy.

As we saw with Richard Nixon, though, our republic is strong. And it can withstand the current assaults on the U.S. Constitution.

What's heartening is to see a strong majority of Americans still believe that no one is above the law, as this president will find out.

And, I am confidant that Dr. Martin Luther King's reminder that “the arc of moral justice is long but bends toward justice,” will again prevail.

More importantly, one could hope that this distraction doesn't take us away from the concerns that put our current existence at risk.

On a global scale, climate change challenges us to come together, lest the Earth shake us off its back as if it were a dog that's just come out of water.

On a more local scale, the so-called thriving economy still hasn't reached many middle-class working families.

My wife and I work five jobs between us, and we're not alone. That scenario is all too common. Most of us are working harder just to tread water and keep from going under.

The transfer of wealth upwards is squeezing working families, and one need not look further than the new federal tax structure as to why. We now have a cohort of individuals and corporations in this country that pays little or no tax.

We pay, so they don't.

It's what I call an upside-down situation, where the federal rules are fixed to benefit those who need it least - and that needs to be fixed.

Amidst all this, I'm trying to remember to stop when the president and his supporters offer more chaos.

It helps to take a breath and say, “No thanks” when the president and his supporters use a level of incendiary rhetoric over policy differences not seen before within the realm of civil discourse - for example, when they not only call our senator, Bernie Sanders, a “socialist” (he identifies as a democratic socialist) but they also invoke Josef Stalin.

(Let's hope they haven't forgotten the history that Stalin killed more 20 million of his own people. That's quite a stretch to use that reference when there's disagreement over taxing the price of pearls.)

Yes, when laws are broken, no one is above the law. We should bring the president to task, but I hope we stay on track with all our work - and we keep it civil, whatever our disagreement.

That faith - in ourselves, in one another, and in our democracy - is well-founded, will guide us in our work and pull us together toward the better days that I'm convinced are ahead of us.

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