I truly do not remember a year end where I have had such a sense of dread and foreboding as the new year approaches as I am now feeling. In 23 days a dangerous demagogue with fascist leanings will be sworn in as president after which havoc will be wreaked on the federal judicial system and many other institutions and programs. Of course, as a gay man, I have much to fear, especially if Trump keeps his promise to the Christofascists and signs the disingenuously named "First Amendment Protection Act" into law. A law that will give Christian extremist total freedom to ignore non-discrimination laws and ordinances if they infringe on Christofascists "religious beliefs." As written, the law opens the door to bullying and worse. In short, it is hard to thing of 2017 with anything other than dread. Kathleen Parker picks up on this foreboding in a column. Here are excerpts:
As usual, the year’s end brings reflections and ruminations on what was and what is to be. This time around, however, it feels as though an era is coming to an end.
That gentle frisson between past and future about which columnists customarily write feels vaguely apocalyptic as we approach the new year.
The usual regrets — too much ice cream, not enough exercise, too quick with a retort, not enough thank-you notes — all feel quaintly irrelevant juxtaposed against a collection of very real fears about the future. During a year of bitter political infighting — sister against sister, neighbor against neighbor — we’ve lost a better part of ourselves and unleashed armies of vengeful strangers.
To put a fine point on it, Donald Trump’s election has released a malevolent spirit upon the land. He invoked the magic message — essentially them vs. us — and the demons disembarked from their dark hiding places. He raided the lost ark and lifted the lid, and the whirlwind of humankind’s worst impulses escaped.
[W]hen the next leader of the free world casually comments that we need to build up our nuclear arsenal — and seems to welcome a return of the Cold War — alarm expressed in the strongest terms possible is required. When such alarm did find expression around the nation and the world, the president-elect huddled in his “fake news” bunker and claimed that his remarks were quoted incompletely.
My guess is the rest of the world is thinking the exact same thing: This president-elect is not in his senses — and he makes no sense.
And, really, again. What’s with making such war-mongering threats when you’re not in the White House yet? Tweeting on matters of such import is unpresidential, not to mention unmanly. Also, it’s insane !
I could pause here and write verbatim the emails and social-media comments certain to follow these observations. They’re as predictable as a 3 a.m. tweet from Trump Tower. This, too, is part of what’s frightening as we take our leave of 2016. People who voted for Trump refuse to critique his behavior through any lens but that of having won a contest.
“We won, you lost — get over it” is what now passes for a serious dialogue about matters of immense importance.
The notion that people who still express concerns — including three professors of psychiatry who’ve signed a letter suggesting the man isn’t well — are just sore losers is nonsense. When the president-elect of the United States so cavalierly threatens to unravel the fragile threads that hold civilization together, there are no winners. He or she who is not worried is not paying attention.
These are also not simple partisan fears. Many Republicans I know are “slightly terrified,” as one Trump voter recently put it to me. That most, if not all, Democrats are, too, doesn’t have to mean they’re all excessively disappointed, though many surely are. And when it comes to abusing logic, Trump wins hands down.
With three children of my own and five young grandchildren I am truly terrified what their future may be given that we are about to have a narcissistic sociopath sworn in as president. #NotMyPresident.