Next week, America will decide whether or not this country will go down on a permanent path to fascism, violence, and white supremacy.
Just before Donald Trump became the president in November 2016, I had written in a leading Indian daily newspaper, predicting a Hillary Clinton win. I was wrong. I was influenced by New York Times, CNN, Washington Post, and such enormous media, and their relentless forecasts.
When I look back on it, I see a glaring lack of communication with the commoners. Conversations at restaurants, pubs and labor unions actually brimmed with an overwhelming support for Trump. The picture remains the same as the November election approaches. More or less.
I live in New York, which is supposed be a fort for liberals and Democrats. If this is the scenario here, we can imagine the picture elsewhere. I have often pondered over the question as to how union workers could support Trump and his cronies who want to destroy unions in the first place. It’s beyond me!
On November 6, Americans will vote for the Congress. They will elect 435 House representatives and thirty-five senators. The Democrats at present are minority in both chambers of Congress. And, they hope win the election by a substantial margin, capture the Congress, and thereby impeach Trump for his numerous heinous and illegal acts — the Nixon and Watergate way.
My gut feeling is that Democrats might win the election by a few seats. But it won’t be enough for a substantial majority. There will be no Democratic landslide at all.
Fascism and dictatorship are getting a lot of steam in America of late — like they are getting it in countries like India, Russia, and Brazil. Here in USA, it’s become ugly and horrendous. Just a few days ago, a white supremacist shot dead eleven innocent Jews in a Pittsburgh synagogue. Another white supremacist killed two innocent black people in a Kentucky supermarket. Another such person targeted anti-Trump Democratic leaders like Hillary and Obama by mailing pipe bombs: his truck sported Trump stickers all over.
Regular attacks on journalists have become a part and parcel of life now. Trump separated immigrant children from their parents, and put them in cages. Just two days ago, he declared he would abolish birthright citizenship — a U.S. constitutional mainstay for over a century. Fascists are trying to scrap the legal framework altogether — everywhere.
Yet, protests are on. Problem is, apart from Bernie Sanders, no leader in the Democratic Party is capable of bringing everybody together. Sanders, however, isn’t supported by Bill and Hillary Clinton-dictated mainstream Democrats. New York Times and CNN don’t want him to get mass support either. We have seen how they have destroyed the Sanders campaign in 2016.
Given the scenario, I doubt whether there will at all be a strong surge of of educated and liberal Americans on the ballot box next Tuesday.
Yet, I am hoping against hope that people of America will prove me wrong again. I want my so-called prophecy to fail.
Written by: Partha Banerjee, Brooklyn, New York
Translated by: Samya Brata Roy, Calcutta, India
Picture from San Diego Free Press. For non-profit, educational use.