In The Months Ahead, The Choice is Ours

Choice & Chance - National Careers Week

I was born during the first half of Dwight Eisenhower's second term as President of the United States. Since that time, there have been many significant personal moments and well as common ones. 

In the 1960s, I was sent home from school on November 22. In 1967 fellow Detroiters were under the curfew imposed during the riots, which were at the time the deadliest in modern American history. 

With my family, I observed on TV the events of 1968 from the Tet Offensive, the killings, and funerals of MLK and RFK, the Democratic Convention riots in Chicago, and the election of Richard Nixon as President. We all watched with pride in humanity as man walked on the moon one year later. 

During the 60s, I saw the angst first hand of four older siblings dealing with the generation gap of those who went from the aspirations of the Kennedy administration to all the subsequent social upheaval that touched their lives. 

The 60s saw us change from a nation and much of its youth inspired by a President asking people what they can do for their country, to student-led demonstrations questioning the motives of that same government. 

After that, we as a nation have seen oil shortages, the resignation of an American President, the Iranian Embassy hostage crisis, the fall of the Soviet Union, domestic terrorism in Oklahoma, a Presidential election decided by the Supreme Court,  the events of September 11 and the wars that started in their aftermath that we as a nation are still fighting to this day.

Today is June 1, and we are exactly five months and three days away from 2020 Presidential elections. In the lead up to the always important elections, we as a nation are engulfed in a worldwide pandemic, and civil unrest we have not seen, and I am sure many who are my age or older will agree, since the events of 1968.

Today we have the COVID-19 pandemic with a President who will not accept accountability for anything, and rejects science on every level, and as it relates to public health, medical science. The recent unprecedented social upheaval following the murder of George Floyd at the hands of police for allegedly passing a counterfeit $20 bill, the streets from major American cities to smaller places like Des Moines Iowa and Fargo North Dakota have been filled with people expressing their righteous indignation with America's systemic and institutionalized inequality. When people take their grievances to the streets, this is the classic marking of a revolution. 

Over the next six months, the events that unfold and how our President addresses them, which we have no confidence in him to do anything but stoke further divisiveness, will in large part determine what life will be like in America for years, if not decades to come. Ultimately this is our country, and it is up to us to decide which path we will take for many years to come.  

Do we want a country that will seek a more perfect union that will dismantle the worse of our institutionalized mechanisms of racial and economic inequality, or will we let it pass by without change? 

During the next six months, the choice is ours

Dan Gougherty

Copyright by Elk Grove News © 2020. All right reserved.



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Atticus Finch said...

It's beyond sad and tragic that the current GOP in Congress, particularly the Senate Republicans have lost all moral backbone and principle. Not to mention they had an opportunity to remove a corrupt president who openly abused the powers of his office. The GOP is unrecognizable as a party it once was and no longer represents the values and principles of American Republicans. It's Trump's party now and should be called "GOT", Grand ol Trump. At least the GOP during Nixon's time stood up to a president when it counted the most resulting in his resignation. Even Nixon knew when he was wrong and left the office with a semblance of dignity. The current Republicans are not patriots and have failed their oath of office in so many instances. I hope one day, Republicans that represent American values espoused in the Constitution take back their party. Our Founding Fathers designed a system of checks and balances that, essentially no longer exists. Trump's powers have gone unchecked, with the dismissals of IG's and flouting of lawful subpoenas. We have no oversight of the executive branch. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

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