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In her March 1 column, Mary Anna Towler expressed her fear of a Trump-induced tyranny. Our friends on the left and on the right share a common fear of tyranny. They also share the belief that their ideological opposites are determined to impose tyranny due to ignoble designs or because of passionate ignorance.
While tyranny may sweep in upon the harsh tempest of nationalism, it is just as likely to drift in on the seductive breeze of collectivism. It is when these impulses and all those other well-intentioned "isms" peaceably neutralize each other that we may enjoy, as the Founders intended, times of uncertainty, disputation, and freedom.
It seems Mr. Towler maintains his faith in our Constitution. It seems he is an optimist. I'm with him.
Our country is in a chaotic free-fall of change – good and bad.
More citizens are activated to create change – good and bad.
People are divided in their political arenas, which affects family and friendships.
We are all victims of a central problem: Citizen's United.
That Supreme Court decision, made in 2010, created a free pass for elections to be bought by corporations or private billionaires. Dollars equals speech. Those with money can pay for mass media to get out their message and, mostly, rip down the opposition's message.
Both liberals and conservatives are negatively affected by this.
Most elected officials, on local, state and national levels, say they spend most of their time raising money to ensure their position. Most say they hate the rat race of bowing to lobbyists, but that is the only way to stay in their seat. Most say they are all for changing that, but few are willing to go public on this goal.
Republicans, Democrats, independents, and conservatives are all opposed to Citizens United – in big numbers. Without the bank account, most citizens are shut out of any real hope of running for office or having a real voice.
We have a way to cross the divide by communicating with one another and conversing about this issue. We can agree on our love of country and our frustration with being bought out of our own participation in democracy.
Regardless of your party affiliation, who you voted for in November, or your race, religion, or gender, we are all Americans, and we can and must work together to stop this buying of our Democracy. This system will surely succeed in destroying democracy as it was conceived by our forefathers. That is already happening.
Join us at Democracy Spring on our Facebook page to learn about our goals and our plans to reach them. We'd love to hear from you and welcome you into our dedicated group. We invite people from all sides of the political spectrum.
This is not a Trump-bashing endeavor. We are all at risk, and we want our children to live in the democracy that is framed by the constitution.
MARY ELLEN BLANCHARD
Stephanie Mercedes brings such intelligence and almost icy intention to her fiery revolutionary work, and you explain it with such clarity and attention that I feel as if I've spent the day in her studio ("The Creative Dissent of Stephanie Mercedes,"Art). Can hardly wait to see the work!