Trump: anarchist, dictator or both?

10/19/2016

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Donald Trump’s party platform finally is clear to me: anarchy/dictatorship.

I don’t say this lightly. Trump makes up facts. He creates conspiracies. And now he is telling his voters to vote, and then go to watch the polls in “certain communities.”

I’m no poll watching expert but each state has rules for how to become a poll watcher. Some, such as Illinois (a state Trump seems to be especially concerned about because of voting in Chicago), require paperwork to be sanctioned and all require some training.

In other words, you don’t just “vote and go to another community” to watch inside the polls. You can be within a certain amount of feet of a polling place to voice support for your candidate or issue, as we all know from the signs posted telling you how far you must be.

But to just show up and “watch” inside the pols isn’t an option. Also, Trump doesn’t tell his supporters that each party already has watchers in the polls. Candidates can also, but, again, there is normally a process.

A Trump presidency scares me but even a Trump candidacy is truly frightening and can be dangerous if his voters do follow his request/demand that they go watch other polls after they vote.

Intimidation is one result, of course, but violence resulting from that intimidation is another. And, even if Trump supporters were approved as poll watchers inside, would they willy-nilly challenge a vote or would they follow some logic? Challenges of course cannot be based on the color of one’s skin, which seems to be Trump’s unstated criteria.

Trump’s allegation that an election can be fixed in this country also is false. It isn’t one election it’s thousands of elections carried out in counties and cities across the country. There are Republican and Democratic registrars of voters and their staffs (and each party’s poll watchers), police and others protecting the vote. There are laws and procedures to protect the sanctity of the ballot box. You couldn’t organize a big enough conspiracy to stuff the ballot box for a presidential candidate in a state, let alone the country.

And the national media are not sitting down with either party determining how best to affect an election. Do the media run in cycles of stories that appear to favor one or the other candidate? Yes, but that’s another debate — not one that’s there to fix an election but a question of media balance. Difficult in this age of cable news and the Internet. Yet a legitimate debate nonetheless and one I hope the media undertake after this election.

Most look at Trump and see a dictator. He looks at himself as, apparently, a dictator and anarchist. Either is anathema to our democracy. He gets more dangerous as he (im)matures as a candidate.

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