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Few Presidents, if any, besides Abraham Lincoln (American Civil War) and Lyndon Johnson (simultaneous riots in over 100 cities following MLK’s assassination in 1968) have had to deal with major civil unrest on the US mainland. It has become clear to this writer, that some White Nationalist Extremists (aka Alt-Right, White Supremacist, KKK) in this country could feel emboldened by a Trump Presidency to start acting on their impulses to “take their country back” through violent means. What is not so clear is the actual number of the individuals that would participate in this folly. Based on what I see on the daily news, the number of people that are at least sympathetic to this movement may be larger than anyone should be comfortable with.
Surely it’s not the same as the 35-40% of our nation that may vote for Trump (40-50 million est). I can rationalize many that will cast a Republican Presidential ballot in 2016 will do so because of their thoughts on balance of the Supreme Court. If I were a Conservative, I would be tempted to do so as well, as these appointments are for life and will probably have consequential meaning long after Trump and many of the rest of us are gone. But in the interim and immediate future, I fear the amount of bloodshed that could come to our streets.
We’re actually well into stage one for the Nationalist Extremists, which is Separateness. Just look at the NC bathroom law. Six other states have or are considering similar bills. What makes you so sure the Extremist will stop with the bathroom laws affecting the LGBT community? This is all being done in the open without violence (so far) and we’re taking it in stride as just noise – another meaningless news story that has little affect on anything. In terms of their priorities, I suspect something either affecting Muslim Americans (Banning travel to or from their homelands) or Latinos (Mass Deportations disguised as Immigration Reform) will be their next target. They’re already in the process of escalating and justify the shooting of African Americans, which we’ve responded by walking around with cute little hand made signs that say “Black Lives Matter”. We’re the proverbial crabs in the boiling pot. Remember, based on polling, Trump’s rhetoric was seemingly fine until he said something bad about Nancy O’Dell – a white woman with blonde hair.
Even though I’m basically a very optimistic (glass half full) type, I do fear the actions of Extremists that are incapable of rationally processing their ability to coexist with people that are simply different. Furthermore, these White Nationalist have and are continuing to arm themselves to unprecedented and rideculous levels. Plus, Trump has repeatedly tweeted and said things like, “… maybe the second amendment people can do something …” This is damn near daring people with guns to use them and not for hunting dinner.
Using a few assumptions and some statistical data, we could estimate what the number of people could be that would initially join in and use violence to “take it back” and “make it great again”. A few of us would fight back and soon afterwards “mob mentality” would prevail and the number of clashes would ballon exponentially. And don’t forget these Extremists are armed with a countless number of weapons easily modified to become military grade (full auto).
We saw what one guy alone can do at the Pulse Nightclub, which catered to the LGBT community in Orlando, Florida earlier this year. Imagine these incidents being coordinated on a large scale via Twitter or FB and happening every night by groups of men for just a few weeks in places catering to the many different ethnic and societal groups, which such people are seemingly offended. Our large Sunday church services, concerts and latest black movie openings to name a few, could be fertile killing ground for such people. This could escalate quickly beyond comprehension. In time it would be called what it is – Genocide. It’s been happening in many other countries to minority groups for years. Are you so sure it can not happen here too?
1,000 people is less than two-thousandths of one percent of that estimated 50 million. That’s 0.002%. By any measure a very, very small number until you multiply it by each person doing what the Pulse Nightclub shooter did – shooting 100 and killing 50. Then it’s 100,000 shot and 50,000 dead. Then multiply this happening every day by just three weeks. That’s over a million deceased. Genocide.
Our country, our families, our homes and our lives as we know it today could change drastically in little to no time at all. And who would black folks turn to? The police? Well, we are kind of in the process of burning that bridge, aren’t we?
This is real folks. Go vote! We need a record victory this election to make a statement that such thinking only exists in the most minute fringes and has no place in the mainstream.
And by the way, even if or when Trump loses, which will hopefully happen in a couple weeks, these folks will still be out there waiting for their opportunity to knock. Be sure making friends with people different than you becomes a part of your daily routine. At some point, this may make all the difference in the world. Otherwise, when their opportunity knocks …
P.S. Let’s not condone anything in the BLM movement which can exasperate the situation any further. Despite what is and has happened, our end game should be for law enforcement to truly protect and serve us all. We need to be building and not burning bridges.
Or does it? Let’s start with a quick history lesson from not too long ago. On Tuesday, November 7th in the year 2000, the US of A once again participated in it’s every four year ritual of “fairly” electing (or reelecting) a president. The official count tallied 48.4% of the popular (actual) votes going to the Democratic nominee with the Republican nominee somewhat close behind with 47.9% of the vote. With over 105 million total votes, the difference between the two major party’s candidates was half a percent.
Other than the Green Party’s candidate, who garnered 2.7% of the vote, the long list of also rans from the Reform, Libertarian and other parties failed to achieve even half of one percent. But more importantly, due to the “winner takes all” rules which governs most states, no one outside of the top two received any electoral college votes.
If you’re following along, you may recall despite Democrat Al Gore’s popular vote victory by more than half a million (540,520), the Electoral College ultimately gave Republican George W. Bush a 271-266 electoral vote victory.
This was only the fourth time in American history and the first time since 1888, when Benjamin Harrison beat Grover Cleveland, that the Electoral College count did not agree with the popular vote count. For the record, this was a year before the first pay phone was invented and a decade and a half before Henry Ford started building Model A’s.
Time for a rant? I can partially understand the reasoning for the Electoral College during a time when people basically walked everywhere they went around town, or used horses and buggies if they were affluent enough to own them. But damn, we’ve since then fought two world wars, been to the moon, invented the internet, i-phones, etc., etc. I think it may be past the time we put this archaic Electoral College poppycock to rest. When was the last time you used or even saw a pay phone?
Until that happens however, how much do you know about the Electoral College, winner takes all rules, etc? Spoiler Alert! If you’ve never actually looked into how the electoral college works, let me just say it’s an outdated methodology that has worked – most of the time. By the numbers, it’s worked 53 out of 57 times, which is 93%. By the way, at one school I attended, 93% was a “B”.
Now, back to the initial question regarding whether or not every vote counts. According to one source (fairvote.org), nearly 80% of the votes cast did not factor into the winner in 2000. What we should learn from this is — Every vote doesn’t necessarily count, and some count more than others. If you live in a so called “swing state”, your vote actually does count quite a bit. So make darn sure you go and vote early and vote often. 🙂
According to politico.com, these are the 11 Swing aka Battleground States (ordered by the number of their electoral votes for the 2016 election). Click on the states below for their recent voting history according to a very interesting and interactive source – 270towin.com …
On a not totally unrelated note, another interesting factoid is of the last 10 presidential elections (1976-2012), 5 went Democratic and 5 went Republican.
The current significance of our 23rd President. Hell, I’ll bet the majority of you don’t even know or care who the 23rd president was. Well, this one-term president, who was elected in 1888 was a Republican Senator from Indiana that served as a Colonel for the Union Army in the American Civil War. He was also the grandson of our 9th President. Is that enough clues or are you ready for me to tell you his name is Benjamin Harrison.
Now let me tell you why this is currently significant. It has to do with two of our least populated states – the Dakotas. The Enabling act of 1889, allowed North Dakota and South Dakota to form state governments and to gain admission as states of the union. (Montana and Washington were also admitted under this act.) Up until that time, Congress had been predominantly Democratic until Harrison took office, and the admission of the two Dakotas gifted the House with a Republican majority.
Even today, there is little or no other reason for this sparsely populated region to have 4 Senators and their respective electoral college votes. Combined, they would rank 40th in population of states, slightly ahead of Hawaii and behind Idaho. By comparison, the population of the two Carolina’s is tens times that of the Dakotas. More to the point, the combined Dakota’s with a population of 1.5 million inhabitants has as many Senators as does California and Texas, which has a combined population of nearly 65 million people (over 20% of the entire U.S. population). Fortunately, in recent times, the Dakota’s have split their loyalties by electing both Democratic and Republican Senators.
To be fair, I know President Benjamin Harrison at least tried to do a lot of good for this country, including works on civil rights, where in 1889, he appeared before Congress and made the following statement, “The colored people did not intrude themselves upon us; they were brought here in chains and held in communities where they are now chiefly bound by a cruel slave code…when and under what conditions is the black man to have a free ballot? When is he in fact to have those full civil rights which have so long been his in law? When is that quality of influence which our form of government was intended to secure to the electors to be restored?”. History shows however, many of his attempted measures were met with resistance and ultimately failed.
Also of interest, is when European settlers began earnestly exploring this area, due to gold being found in 1874 in the sacred “Black Hills” of the Sioux tribe, this greatly increased hostilities with the native Sioux people and in one of the great ironies of this country, “dakota” is the Sioux word for “friends” or “allies”. History of European settlers is wrought with this theme and I’d bet you thought the story line in the blockbuster movie Avatar was original? However, the Natives prevail only in Hollywood story lines. Never in reality.