Politicians have a right to lie to the American people. It is protected by the First Amendment. But the people have the obligation to vote these liars out of office.
The excuse that “all politicians lie” is a shirking of our moral responsibility to work for a good society. Yes, many politicians lie, but Trump and the kakistocracy with which he has surrounded himself lie relentlessly, remorselessly, and recklessly with ruinous repercussions for both people and the planet. Each day they hold power represents a real diminishment of the well-being of present and future life on earth.
I hold almost no hope that a Republican Congress will do anything to protect us from this very real threat to our country and the world, for in fact they have been complicit and responsible for the possibility of a Trump coming to power. As long as they think his presidency contributes to their agenda, they will never hold him accountable, and they are held in place by some of the wealthiest and most formidable people and corporations on the planet, who care much more about their profit than people and who see the planet as resource for their use, control, and gain rather than as our common home.
We the people are our only hope, and even though the lines and laws and have been drawn against us by these very same formidable powers, we must avoid all distractions and temptations of apathy, we must reject all propaganda that is meant to divide and conquer us, and we must rise up and resist with levels of voter participation never before seen in the history of our country.
Human civilization depends on us. We can be the greatest generation or the generation that let it all slip away into chaos and suffering. Yes, the choice really is that stark, and yes the challenges we now face really are that fiercely urgent. We are the people, and as JFK reminded us, “If not us, who? If not now, when?”