Is it faultless? Certainly not. Winston Churchill once said: “No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.
Nevertheless, America remains the torch bearer for democracy. Our traditions prove that people who disagree on matters of policy, can bury their concerns and rally around the democratically leader after an election. The orderly transfer of power is critical to maintaining democracy, and has been respected since George Washington passed the gavel to John Adams. That is our national strength.
Sadly, with the 2017 election, Americans and the world are witnessing the undermining of this tradition for the first time in over 227 years. This too is being closely watched around the free world. The once called “Loyal Opposition” appear to be doing everything in their power to undermine the Presidency of Donald Trump before he takes office.
Even President Obama has dishonored his legacy by making sudden bold steps in the closing days of his administration that he refused to take during his eight years in office. These are attempts to tie the incoming President’s hands in matters both domestic and foreign. Yet, no criticisms from the 4th estate. The media does not even mention how unprecedented his actions are.
Some activists have even alerted the nation (Al Sharpton being one) that the season for civil unrest and civil disobedience is upon us. Groups are seeking to create chaos and violence during the Inauguration itself.
Others have taken to pressuring performers, exerting pressure to keep them from participating in the ceremony itself. An atmosphere of hatred and intolerance has permeated the transition unlike anything I have ever seen before.
This is a sad comment on our present state of affairs. Regretfully, there are no denunciations or criticisms about this situation. The siren call of a “Loyal Opposition” has been silenced in 2017.
Trump was not my candidate, but he is my President. I will give him every opportunity to prove his metal in the cauldron of national and international politics. Every American should track the same course. When wrong, he should and must be criticized. But he should also be given a chance.
Democrats and their followers should consider the words of Candidate Clinton during the 3rd Presidential Debate. She chastised Trump for raising questions about possible election results: “That is not the way our democracy works…We’ve been around for 240 years. We’ve had free and fair elections. We’ve accepted the outcomes when we may not have liked them.”
On this point Hillary was right. Cooperation and compromise have allowed our nation to survive and not devour itself through civil strife that serves no one’s purpose. Additionally, Progressives had best be mindful. What happens becomes the legacy of the Democratic Party and the Progressive Movement. This “new tradition” of meanness could well set a dangerous precedent that might infect future elections…elections Democrats may win.
Americans have to send a clear message that democracy and freedom are alive and well in America. This President, like all before him, deserves some measure of respect and an opportunity to prove himself.
History records all.
Ron Chapman is an award winning columnist, businessman and professor at Nunez Community College