Paul Stackhouse: Trumpism corrupts basic democracy tenets
Even though it is a foregone conclusion that Mr. Trump will not win California’s endorsement for president of the United States, I still urge you to vote this November, as your vote is fundamentally significant to the spirit of Nevada County.
Unlike any other presidential election, this election is not about the individual who heads the Republican Party or the Democratic Party or the Libertarian Party or the Green Party. This election is far more critical than merely voting from the top to the bottom of the ballot for the party that best represents our individual political views. This year, the presidential election is about remaining committed to cultivating the social and moral aspirations the Founders envisioned for our nation.
Our Founders left us with a formidable legacy: to ceaselessly strive to form a more perfect Union, promising greater liberty, justice, and tranquility for all. This is the fundamental responsibility that each successive generation of Americans are charged to pursue. It is our pledged duty as active participants in a democratic society to move our community ever forward toward achieving these noble goals. Consequently, this election is about remaining faithful to our Founders’ call toward the perpetual pursuit of forming a more just and humane society. Therefore, this election is about choosing to stand for Americanism as our Founders envisioned it, or to stand for its reprehensible mockery, Trumpism.
What is Trumpism? Trumpism is socially divisive. Trumpism incites hatred and violence. Trumpism ridicules the physically challenged. Trumpism stereotypes and denigrates ethnic and religious groups. Trumpism promotes misogyny, racism and xenophobia. Trumpism shames our country’s prisoners of war, characterizing them as losers. Trumpism lacks empathy for grieving Gold Star families. In essence, Trumpism is the antithesis of the values and principles that our Founders forged in Philadelphia 227 years ago, and it should not be allowed to take hold here in Nevada County.
Trumpism is not a champion for the common person, the small business owner or the self-employed, quite the contrary. Trumpism is exploitive and self-serving. Trumpism elevates self-interest above community. As social dogma, Trumpism can best be exemplified by twisting and corrupting the following precept that in its original form embraces kindness and positive community service: Do all the good you can (for yourself), by all the means you can (for yourself), in all the ways you can (for yourself), in all the places you can (for yourself), at all the times you can (for yourself), and for as long as you can (for yourself).
This is Trumpism reduced to its un-American, self-centered, philosophical core.
The direction that Trumpism promises to take our country cannot be the intended course our Founders envisioned when they conceived the framework for our democracy and emboldened us with the obligation to form a more perfect Union for all Americans. Make no mistake, Trumpism absolutely corrupts the basic tenets of our democracy and it must not be condoned in Nevada County.
The hateful ideology of Trumpism will be soundly defeated in California next month, but your voice still matters here. This November we must unite and forcefully reject Trumpism in Nevada County. I believe that the good folks of our county are altruistic and compassionate and inclusive, seeking to build together a community that transcends the hate, the fear and the selfishness propagated by Trumpism.
Please, join with me and repudiate Trumpism. Your vote matters to our community.
Paul Stackhouse has lived in Nevada City since 1966. He is currently enjoying his 37th year of teaching.
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