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The Downside of a Trump Presidency  – The Struggle continues… By Sherry Cannon

Sherry-Cannon-photo1I’m trying to comprehend the appeal of Donald Trump for his most ardent supporters. Many of Trump’s loyalists hide behind the anonymity of the Internet spinning horrible lies about the first family and outrageous conspiracy theories about the Clintons.  Some are white supremacist, who are attempting to rebrand themselves with a less offensive name called the Alt-Right.  However, some of his supporters are regular folks; folks we work with, go to church with, and are our neighbors.

Dr. King said, “nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity”. The word ignorant means lacking knowledge or information, while the word stupid means lacking intelligence or common sense.

I believe that it is important that we make decisions based on facts and not on something someone says because we want it to be true.  In electing the most powerful person in the free world it’s critical we deal with reality and not some wacky conspiracy theory.

The question I pose is, what do we really know about Donald Trump?  We know that he was a reality show personality and is purported to be an astute businessman. We know he refuses to release his tax records, provide a legitimate medical report on the state of his health, or name his business partners.

A recent article in News Week Magazine written by Kurt Eichenwald goes in- depth on the Trump Organization’s foreign business dealings.  After conducting confidential interviews with business executives and some international business partners of Trump, Eichenwald said his foreign business dealings could upend US national security.

The article details Trump’s deep ties to global finances, foreign politicians and even criminals and how they raise serious conflicts of interest and ethical quagmire.  It also confirmed that Trump revealed none of his overseas contractual business dealings in his campaign financial filing with the Federal Election Commission.

Much of the Trump’s Organization for the past decade has not been in building huge structures as he claims, but in peddling his name.  Rather than constructing Trump owned hotels and other structures, he is being paid for the rights of adding his name on someone else’s building. The last building constructed by Donald Trump was in 2007, when the Trump So-Ho Hotel and condominium was built.

 

Trump stated that if he were to be elected president, his business holdings would be put in a blind trust that his children would manage.  This is a dishonest statement, in order for assets to be put into a blind trust; you cannot know what makes up those assets.  Donald Trump knows exactly what his business dealings are. 

The reality is, we will be electing either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton as president of the United States. This requires us to determine which of these two candidates will serve the interest of the United States best. The media has done a good job at conflating the character of Trump and Clinton. I believe this is a false equivalency and a dangerous proposition. Hillary Clinton is an individual with a long history of public service. She is probably the most vetted politician in history. Is she perfect no, but she is far from dangerous. On the other hand, I assert, that Donald Trump is dangerous.

We are just beginning to learn the truth about Donald Trump. He has used his foundation to illegally donate to political campaigns. He has paid off personal legal debt with monies donated to his foundation from other people. He has defrauded small businesses that has contracted with his companies. Trump has stolen money through Trump University from the most vulnerable. He has aligned himself with racist, notwithstanding his own racially charged accusation that President Obama was an illegitimate president.

I appeal to all who have been unengaged about the upcoming election and how critical it is to make your vote count. As Bernie Sanders recently stated, this is not a time for a protest vote for Gary Johnson or Jill Stein. The polls are showing that such a vote will only help Donald Trump. It is not a time to stay home from the polls. This too will only help Donald Trump. There’s a reason why 20 Republican led states are trying to make it harder for minority and poor people to vote.

This election cycle is the most important national election in fifty years. The next president will appoint the next 2-3 Supreme Court Justices. Those appointments can change the trajectory of our country for the next fifty years. The next president will be critical in how climate change will be dealt with. The next president will determine the course of public education. The next president will be critical in fixing our broken immigration system. As Commander in Chief, the next president will be responsible for war or peace.

Finally, are these words from President Barack Obama; “My name may not be on the ballot, but our progress is on the ballot. Tolerance is on the ballot. Democracy is on the ballot. Justice is on the ballot. Good schools are on the ballot. Ending mass incarceration — that’s on the ballot right now! Hope is on the ballot. And fear is on the ballot, too. There’s no such thing as a vote that doesn’t matter. It all matters”.