Two More Patriots Testify

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The right-wing echo chamber not amused

Today we heard testimony from two more patriots. Today, we also heard more of the same from a political party that’s out of touch and out of defenses for the President of the United States. Indeed, the last two weeks didn’t go well for him.

And frankly, the next several weeks will not go well for him either. His impeachment is imminent, though it’s not clear what the Democrats plan is for the next stage. I’m assuming it’s a work in progress, but it does appear that witness testimony has concluded today.

Of course, there’s always the chance that former National Security Adviser John Bolton might reach deep into his conscience for some patriotism and decide to come forward. But, he’s got a book deal. That’s much more important.

Former National Security Council official Dr. Fiona Hill and State Department official David Holmes answered the bell today. They were both served subpoenas, told not to testify, but did it anyway. In fact, all of the witnesses who testified over the past two weeks honored the requests of the House Intelligence Committee. They showed up, despite the President and Secretary of State’s attempts to stop them. We certainly owe them all a sense of gratitude for doing the right thing.

Nothing we heard today from these two witnesses disputes the underlying facts of what the inquiry was all about: the President of the United States used his office for personal gain. He leveraged a meeting with the new Ukrainian President in the oval office and military aid, for political dirt on a potential political rival, or, at least, an announcement of an investigation. It was damning evidence, an accumulation of facts that the Republicans on that Committee couldn’t refute.

We should be proud of those who came to testify. We should also rest a bit easier knowing that these are the people who work for us, the taxpayers. They selflessly do their jobs, many of them serving in dangerous parts of the world. They rarely seek the limelight. Most admitted that testifying before the Committee was not something they relished doing. But, they did it anyway. A sense of duty and honor, two traits all should aspire to if you happen to work for the federal government.

These people, and those like them, do not grow on trees. They’re the best of the best. These are the Ivy League and West Point folks. Some of them have Ph.D.’s–most of them have master’s degrees in areas like foreign services or Russian Studies. Many were veterans of the military; some wounded in battle.

We depend on them to carry out the policies of the United States government, no matter who the President is. Time and time again, we heard them using the same word to describe themselves: non-partisan.

But, we saw our friends on the Republican side go after a purple heart recipient, Lt. Colonel Alexander Vindman. They questioned his motives and allegiances, as well as his choice to wear a military uniform. While the Republican members of the Committee were somewhat restrained in how they went after Vindman, the rest of the right-wing media were less so. The attacks were vicious and despicable. You’d expect nothing less from them.

And let’s not forget to blame the one man who not only puts his stamp of approval on these types of attacks but participates in them as well: the President of the United States, their dear leader, and king. It all comes from the top.

More ugly attacks

Finally, I’d like to close with something that I’ve been grappling with all day. I wasn’t sure whether to give this person any publicity whatsoever. In the end, though, I think I need to share it with you, if for no other reason than to highlight why we’ll be in the fight for our democratic lives in 2020.

This person has well over 300k followers on Twitter. I’m one of them. There are a handful of far right-wing Trump cult members that I follow. I want to know what that side of the spectrum is talking about, and when I see something over the top, I respond. Today, it was one of those instances.

My simple response to her tweet? “She’s a U.S citizen. FYI”

It’s nothing new, of course. These are the kind of tweets that we see daily. Today though, I was struck by the irony in this tweet.

Dr. Hill is the type of immigrant whom the President and all of his faithful followers claim is the type they want in this country. She’s white, European, college-educated, and has assimilated in the way they say the ‘brown people’ have not. They want the President to build his wall to keep “those people” out. Dr. Hill, you would think, checks off everything on their list of who should be in this country.

But, Dr. Hill had the nerve to do something that none of the Trump cult can understand: she told the truth, an inconvenient truth. She’s non-partisan and merely testified to what she heard and what she saw. How dare she not get in line with the rest of them? How dare she cross the man who demands loyalty to him, not the country?

I wonder how many of her followers feel the same way. I wonder how many of them were seething at her testimony, deriding her as an elitist, leftist liberal out to get Trump. Perhaps if she just stayed home and honored Trump’s demand not to testify. Maybe then, she’d have been lionized instead of ostracized.

I’ve stopped trying to figure them out.

The point of my publicizing the tweet, however, is to remind us all that the deep underbelly of this cult-like behavior is a threat to all of us in 2020. The blind allegiance to this President is one of the scariest things I’ve seen in my nearly six decades on this planet. When they can attack a purple heart recipient or proud immigrant who chose to adopt our country as her home of choice, they will stop at nothing in defending this man.

Dr. Hill revealed to the Committee that she’d received death threats and other horrific attacks on her character. Is it any wonder when you see a tweet like this? As impeachment gets closer to reality, things are only going to get worse. It’s time to stiffen the spine and fight back.

As Chairman Adam Schiff stated at the end of his closing statement, quoting the late, great Elijah Cummings: “We’re better than this!” We damn well better be.

17 comments

  1. If only there were some test to measure a person’s conscience, a requisite for holding any public office, from dogcatcher to president. All of these career civil servants are better qualified for their jobs than the ‘man’ who calls himself ‘president’, and is neither. Like you, Jeff, I find this to be the most frightening thing I have experienced in all my life in this nation. I remember the Cuban Missile Crisis. I remember air raid drills in school, having to crouch under our desks, never knowing if there was really a bomb heading our way. Twice in my life, I have stood and had a gun pointed at me. Yes, never have I been as frightened as I am today. There is something evil building, and I fear it is soon to come to a head. Having a corrupt, evil president is one thing, but having a large number of the members of Congress who are willing to sacrifice every bit of their integrity to defend the indefensible … it’s wrong. It’s scary, for I know not what tomorrow brings … for any of us. We’re worrying about next year’s election, but I’m not even sure today that we’ll get that far.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thank you for the reblog Jill! I’m with you. We’ve both been around a long time and have seen some really bad stuff. As a nation, we’ve seen wars, assassinations and the like. But never before have we seen this kind of cult-like worship of a leader. And I can’t help but think how much of it is racially motivated. As the tweet clearly states, she will NOT be lectured by a ‘foreigner.’ Geez.
      You know, for a while, I thought that account may be a bot. However, she’s a real human being. She’s a contributor to some far-right media outfit. She posted a video where she’s interviewing some whacko. Unbelievable. They’re really worried Jill. Their ‘whiteness’ is being threatened. She’s not even bashful saying it. And with 320k followers, that’s a lot of influence and a big megaphone. I think it’s where you, I, and others who blog play an important role. This hate crap cannot stand. I’ve got to believe decency and empathy will win in the long run. God I hope so.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I agree with you … so much of it is racially motivated. It’s partly the result of 8 years with an African-American president. It’s partly the refugee crisis and thousands of Muslims seeking asylum. It’s partly the remnants of the Civil Rights Era when some learned to keep their opinions to themselves, but at the same time, their bigotry never went away, was merely tamped down. And then, along comes Donald Trump to reinforce the idea that because of their whiteness, they should reign supreme, and to stoke their fears of losing their status as the majority. Trump told them they were in danger, that all these black and brown-skinned people were out to get them. He told them that Islam is a murderous religion. And they fell for it hook, line and sinker. You’re right … it’s up to us and people who care to keep fighting the good fight. Some days it seems a losing battle, but if we succumb to the temptation to quit, if we just give up, then we all lose. So, my friend, you and I will keep on keeping on. I will answer your email this weekend, and we’ll put our heads together and get our project off the ground!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Look forward to hearing from you Jill! With the T-day holiday fast approaching, I’ll be kind of in and out, as far as blog stuff goes. My step-son is coming in from So Cal, so we’ll be spending some fun time with him. But, the following week I’ll be ready and raring to go. You think Trump can stop wrecking our democracy for a week? LOL…..hell no!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Like you, my time will be highly fragmented this week, for I am cooking a 24-pound turkey with all the trimmings, plus, granddaughter’s birthday is on Thanksgiving this year, so I’m not sure how much time I’ll have either. Next week, we will put our noses to the grindstone, but for this week, let’s go easy on ourselves and try to enjoy family & friends, enjoy the holiday as much as we can with this crazy news cycle that has even bombarded the weekend, with the Secretary of Navy’s firing! Sheesh. Sigh. No, Trump will be holding a big rally in Florida on Tuesday that is expected to be a fiasco. Again … sigh.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Wow! 24 pounder? I’ll be over to help! LOL. Yes, next week for sure Jill. I plan on enjoying this week as best I can. For now, it’s just the wife, myself, and stepson on Thursday, although it’s possible we may have some neighbors over as well. Nevertheless, we’ll enjoy our time together. I will pay attention to the news. Just not as aggressively. He’s pretty much invaded our space hasn’t he? It’s by design, I feel. The world’s number one narcissist loves every minute of it! God I can’t wait till he’s banished to some villa in Moscow….or wherever! Happy T-Day, and we’ll talk.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. The more the merrier! This one is for 8 people, plus we like to have some leftover for sandwiches, and I always make a pot of turkey-veggie soup the day after. He has definitely invaded our space, my friend. He has changed our priorities in life, even. He simply demands to be the center of attention, of everything. I still say I’d love to see the media keep him and his ugly mug completely out of the news for 24-48 hours … why, he might just die of apoplexy!!! Whenever my phone signals a breaking news update, my first reaction is always, “what’s he done now?” Sigh. Happy T-day to you and yours as well, my friend!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Scary times, indeed…
    I think the “cult” has been there long before trump. He simply gave them their freedom to step out. He emboldened them, as do the republicans.

    Look at all the atrocities done to other humans all through history. Usually based on race or religion with power and territory gain as the ultimate goal for the leaders. But the followers are co opted by their hatred.

    Anyone remember Star Trek Next Generation and the Borg?

    I keep hoping we are living in a computer game or we are a simulation and that none of this is “real.”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s all too real Mary. Yes, Trump isn’t the cause..he’s just the vessel they have now to spew their deeply held beliefs about ‘how things need to be.’ Or, better yet, ‘back to the good old days.’ We know what they mean.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Jeff, here is my recent brief post. I thought it fit nicely with this subject.

    A letter to the editor in my paper today was entitled “As a Republican, I won’t follow blindly.” The following are his first two paragraphs:
    “Why are American citizens turning a deaf ear to the obvious wrongdoings of the president of the United States.
    As a registered Republican, I am appalled that my fellow American citizens aren’t ashamed of the total disregard for the truth that is being emitted from Washington.”
    This emperor has no clothes. He is also a national security risk as he belittles and embarasses an ally in need of our help for personal gain.

    Keith

    Liked by 2 people

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