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  • Writer's pictureNancy Dafoe

Feeling Hopeless? Don't. Become Activists for Democracy and Justice

After the unbelievable acquittal of Kyle Rittenhouse who walked out of a court house in Kenosha, Wisconsin a free man after murdering two men and maiming a third, it is easy to fall “victim” to a sense of hopelessness, a sense of injustice prevailing yet again. Do not.

There is work to be done, and those of us who believe in the grand American experiment of working toward a more just and egalitarian society have to pick ourselves up and work to ensure that Reich-wing Republicans are no longer calling the shots in America (puns intended).

When Rittenhouse used an AR-15-style rife to shoot and kill Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and horribly maim George Grosskreutz, 27, there was a belief that the violence-loving young man (old enough to hang out in bars with Proud Boys) would, of course, be held accountable for his actions. That was before Republican leaders, the NRA/Russian money laundering organization, and a handful of Hollywood outcasts decided to make Rittenhouse a cause célèbre for their white supremacy core belief system and as a powerful wedge to destroy our increasingly fragile “constitutional republic” that misleadingly labels itself a democracy.

Republicans, today and for the last several years, offer nothing except hate, division, misinformation, outright lies, and diversion. They no longer bother to have even the pretense of a party platform. Hate and lies repeated over and over work well in keeping the “base” in line. Hitler outlined how the “big lie” worked as he dictated it in his book Mein Kampf, and his minister of propaganda Goebbels used it to horrific success. Republican leaders are students of history even if their constituents are not.

Without the funding of corporate “lords,” the Republican Party would have diminished into third party status or have been extinguished some time ago, but corporate industries like oil and gas, as well as industry “leaders” have fueled the Republican lies and candidates. Know and repeat the names of these top Republican “donors” in 2020: Koch, the Adelsons, the Uihleins, the Griffins, the Mellons, specifically Timothy Mellon from Pan Am Systems coughed up 10 million, Linda McMahon, Diane Hendricks of ABC Supply, Richard DeVos, Jr., of Amway (and former husband of Betsy DeVos), the Schwarzmans, Jeffrey Yass, Laura Pealmutter, the Marcus Foundation, Charles R. Schwab, Warren Stephens, Shirley Ryan, Paul Singer, Stephen Wynn of Wynn Resorts, the Camerons of Mountain Corp., Kelcy Warren of Energy Transfer, Jeffrey (of the New York Stock Exchange) & Loeffler Specher, Geoff Palmer, Walter W. Jr Buckley of Buckley Muething Capital Management, J. Christopher Reyes of Reyes Holdings in West Palm Beach, FL, Lawrence Ellison of Oracle Corp, Fredric N. Eshelman of Furiex Pharmaceuticals, Ronald S. Lauder of Estee Lauder Companies, William P. II Foley of Fidelity National Financial, Daniel & Margaret Loeb of Third Point LLC, Thomas J. Peed of Sandhills Publishing, Stephen Chazen of Occidental Petroleum, among others giving in excess of double digit millions.

Then there are the Republican (autocrat) super PACs, beginning with American First Action, Preserve America, and America First Policies (Superpacs formed specifically to get Trump into office), except the donors behind these Superpacs are primarily globalists of the first order. The casino, gambling, and finance industries were major donors to the Trump “continuing” campaigns. Notice how these Superpac groups use terminology that is actually antithetical to their means of making money? But the “America” terms are effective in tricking their “base.” Stealing from the people in the states, divert their attention by pointing to a Mexican, pointing to a person of color. Republicans have learned this diversion trick well with Trump being the idiot savant in the genre of misdirection.

Couple those private individual donations with the top corporate donors to Trump and the Republican candidates from Fortune 500 companies in 2020: Altria Group (the cigarette industry), Exxon Mobile, Western Refining, Las Vegas Sands, among too many others.

How does this funding impact legislation? Only 9% of Mitch McConnell’s donations come from Kentucky. Looking at you, NRA (Russia) and the DeVos family interests to help Mitch hold a death grip on power. Susan Collins gets only 1% of her donations from her state of Maine. Here’s looking at Exxon Mobile and General Electric, Susan. Tom Cotton received $1.9 million from the NRA (Russian money laundering) and massive donations from Koch Industries. Minority Leader in the House Kevin McCarthy is the number one recipient (as of this writing) of oil and gas industries and has taken large donations from indicted Russians Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman. Starting to see a pattern with Republican leaders here? We are not even bringing in how many foreign interests own Trump.

Despite the fact that America has our own brand of despicable oligarchs who manipulate, split the country, perpetrate lies and deception, we still have a chance to make a better country and to survive (think slowing global warming to avoid or lessen even more catastrophic consequences).

The fact is, there are more good Americans than bad American oligarchs and the men (and women) they have bought, but ALL of those good Americans have to stop sitting back and complaining or just wishing and hoping for a better country. We ALL have to get involved, peacefully demonstrate, become activists, donate to Democratic candidates in critical races, volunteer to canvas and help campaign for Democrats, stand up and spread the word every single day.

We are not fated to become an autocratic state, but we are rapidly heading there. Stopping the bleeding is up to each one of you. If you are not sure how to help, call your local Democratic Committee person or office. Get involved before it is too late.

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