Some of my left-leaning friends took to social media last night and posted joyous, celebratory messages about the historic impeachment vote against President Trump in the House of Representatives. I wish I could have shared in their enthusiasm, but I was immediately awash under a wave of doom and gloom. I actually went to bed in a state of depression. I’ve seen the writing on the wall for the last 4 or 5 years. In my nightmares, I have seen how this thing ends, and it’s no cause for glee unless you want to see our government completely overhauled and our Constitution dismantled and stripped out for parts.
What we are seeing is just another necessary step in the ongoing coup being perpetrated by the far-right Christian minority. If you’ve watched the stunning Netflix documentary called The Family, then you are well aware that this coup has been decades in the making. It’s been a slow, clandestine build; a process of putting the right people in the right places at the right time. That time is now. We are in for major changes. If you are a far-right fundamentalist Christian, you are licking your chops. If you are anyone else, prepare yourselves for a trip back in time. The Age of Regression is upon us.
The only thing about the impeachment that I find positive is the fact that at least history will record that there was a vocal and aggressive opposition to the coup. As a student and teacher of American history, I believe that is crucially important. Unless the coup is so successful that it becomes illegal to record a non-whitewashed version of history (a very real possibility, I fear), future generations of American students will learn of the treasonous deeds being pulled off right under our noses. If that is forbidden to be printed in American history books, at least the story will be told to the rest of the world and hopefully used as a cautionary tale in the same way the story of Germany in the 1930s is used.
I believe that the two men pictured above are among the most diabolical leaders America has ever spawned. Mitch McConnell was hard at work laying the groundwork for the coup well before Donald Trump was elected. In a move that I still have a hard time believing he actually got away with, McConnell used his power and his majority of cronies in the Senate to block nearly everything President Obama attempted to do in his last year as president. When Justice Scalia died in February of 2016, President Obama fulfilled his responsibility by nominating Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court. For nearly a year, McConnell blocked the vote for that nomination. He stomped on the Constitution and somehow managed to completely circumvent the system of checks and balances, ignoring the power and duty of the Executive Branch and abusing the power and duty of the Legislative Branch. That led to the circus of a process where the GOP set about stacking the Supreme Court with their own hand-picked choice, Brett Kavanaugh. Again, this happened in broad daylight, right in front of us, and we just stood there and took it. As a historian, let me assure you, that treasonous series of moves is high on the list of the most egregious abuses of power in the history of this nation. And now, McConnell brags about it and laughs in our faces. He is bragging and laughing about committing treason. I see no other way to look at it.
And now Mitch McConnell is already openly making a mockery of his upcoming duties in the Senate impeachment trial. He is publicly saying that there will be no additional witnesses called and openly admitting that they will go through the motions of a very brief trial before voting to acquit. Again, this is a public admission of intent to commit treason. McConnell and the GOP aren’t even trying to hide the coup now. It’s being played out in real time, right before our eyes. History may be watching and recording, but that does us precious little good in the here and now.
So, while many were celebrating last night’s historic vote, I took to bed under a cloud of dread. Donald Trump isn’t going anywhere. What’s more, his base is fired up and energized. Gone are the chances of turning some of them with reason. They are proudly coming out to fight. I saw them on social media last night, too. They have the Electoral College process firmly rigged in their favor and they know it good and well. I see nothing changing. I don’t see Red states turning blue. I see business as usual with a corrupted system supporting a monumental coup. With a newly energized and emboldened base, I believe Trump will be catapulted to a second term. Unless the Senate sees a huge Blue Wave change the power structure, between 2020 and 2024, we will see at least one more Supreme Court seat go to a conservative, giving them, at minimum, a 6-3 advantage. With all the necessary pieces thus in place, the GOP will bring the coup to its climax. Civil Rights will take a huge hit, regressing back 40 or 50 years. Immigrants will be persona non grata, rights stripped, rounded up and deported by the thousands. LGBT people will be persecuted. Public schools will be a wasteland. The incredible income inequality will grow even more. Poverty stricken black neighborhoods will become a brutal police state. Protestant Christianity will be made the official state religion (that’s right, Catholic friends, you may think you are in the good graces of the GOP, but just wait until they have gotten what they need from you…). Women’s rights will be turned back to the 1950s. Wilderness areas will be raped for their natural resources and climate change will accelerate as corporations will be freed up to dump their pollution with impunity. Freedom of the press will be all but erased. Writers who speak out against the coup will be silenced. Emboldened far-right gun nuts will feel free to hunt down resisters. In short, a dystopian novel will be played out in the land of the free and home of the brave.
I have seen these things come to pass in my nightmares. These visions are so clear to me that I fully expect most of them to come to fruition.
I pray with every fiber of my being that I turn out to be wrong.
But pardon me if I don’t get excited about the impeachment.
A very concerned Christ follower