The Republican stench of complicity

Shinbone Star founder Glenn Redus during the Women’s March on Washington. *

My hat is off to Saturday Night Live for a couple of bits they performed the last two weeks that most of us recognize as bitingly true of the Republican Party.

In the first bit, cast members in several settings hailed the GOP leader who stood up to the The Current President (TCP) and helped call to the attention of the electorate that The Emperor has No Clothes. In each scene, the camera turned to the hero of the republic that had turned America around.

But instead of a name, the viewer was met with a TBD (To Be Determined) placeholder. We don’t know who it will be, but SNL seemed to hold out hope that someone at some point will step forward from Republican ranks and become a leader.

Last Saturday night, Scarlett Johansson played the daughter of TCP in a faux perfume ad. In the “ad,” the narrator hails Ivanka as “a woman who knows what she wants, and knows what she’s doing.” The name of her perfume is “Complicit.”

When TCP hijacked the Republican Party last year, some members of the party who considered him a disaster tried everything they could think of to slow the train. Remember the #NeverTrump movement? Its website is still live, and says more than 56,000 Republican Party members affirmed they would never support him. The movement even had a pithy preface: “We stand united to defend basic, common decency and Constitutional principles. And we will do our part to ensure that Donald Trump never becomes Commander-in-Chief. Never means never.”

Of course, that was rank-and-file Republicans. Big-name politicians gave up trying to stand against him, until they learned something: There were voters coming to his banner who would probably also vote for anyone  with nice things to say about His Petulance. Conversely, any politician who was lambasted by the candidate would probably lose votes among non-Republicans who had sided with the candidate.

So, for Power they abandoned Principle. That leaves us where we are today, and it doesn’t begin to tie the outcome of the election to Russia, the Klan, or the FBI. Power-hungry pols simply hopped onto TCP and made him the vehicle of their drive to remake America.

Some think that if economic disaster strikes after the Republicans install their right-wing agenda, they will impeach TCP and claim credit for saving the country.

But their complicity will not be mitigated by later ousting a madman from the Oval Office.

By then they will have massively changed America.

Women’s reproductive rights? Not a chance.

Voting rights? Only if they can be managed to keep millions of voters from the franchise?

Environmental protections? Hey, there is money to be made by selling off federal lands so they can be fracked for a bit of oil.

That’s a quick three, and an easy three. There are many more

Virtually every action that Republicans have taken since Inauguration Day has been to the detriment of those below the top 2 percent in the tax bracket. Don’t expect that to change until 2020, unless everything goes south.

Which is, finally, the problem. Democrats, as it was pointed out in the campaign, generally have an optimistic view of America’s future. It is not in our nature to root to bring down our country. We’re now strapped into this runaway train, and the next time we’ll have the opportunity to affect a change in course will be in 2018.

In the meantime, Republicans will have the opportunity to show us that they care about all Americans; not just the top 2 percent, and the big corporations. Don’t expect much.

I believe they’re simply going to be Complicit.

* Photo by Mary Redus



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