“Dictatorship for Dummies”

Dear President Trump,

Because it’s the polite thing to do I will wish you a happy St. Patrick’s day, though I really don’t want to wish you a happy anything. I know it can’t be a literally apt metaphor since it’s been going on way too long, but you are stepping on my last nerve. Years ago Laura and I heard a very exasperated mom say this to her child in the grocery store; she seemed at her wit’s end and as though she couldn’t wait for naptime to have a break from her whiny, challenging kid. You know, I’d trade that whiny kid for you in a heartbeat. I so just want this to be over and I want you to take a very, very long nap so the rest of us can start cleaning house.

It occurred to me earlier today that you seem to have gotten your hands on an advance copy of “Dictatorship for Dummies.” Who wrote it? Bannon maybe? Is there a forward by Putin? I think the major themes include instruction on how to Divide and Conquer, Politicize the Judiciary, Undermine Trust in Pretty Much Everything and Everyone, Make Sure They Know You Are Lying, Say Outrageous Things Over and Over Until They Don’t Seem Outrageous Anymore, Do Outrageous Things Over and Over Until They Don’t Seem Outrageous Anymore, Publicly Shame and Humiliate Anyone Who Crosses You, Quash Critical Thinking, and Make Sure to Have Damning Information About Your Allies So They Can’t Turn On You. Since you aren’t a reader yourself, I’m seeing someone tucking you in and reading it aloud to you every night at bedtime.

I know I’m framing all this as though it’s funny, but it’s really very creepy and chilling that someone who presents like (is) such a dummy has gotten this far in pulling off a by-the-book execution of how to dismantle a democracy and build a dictatorship. Thankfully, you are a dummy and many of your previous faithful are beginning to question the wisdom of following you to the ends of the earth. It’s like they are waking up out in the middle of a field wondering how the hell they got there. They are realizing they’ve been had, that you are not to be trusted. They are realizing you need to go and we are all realizing our votes matter, every last one of them, and that this is how we will both be free of you and save democracy.

May we be safe from tyranny.
May we be happy to engage in critical thinking.
May we insist our elected officials act in the best interest of the entire populous.
May we be willing to engage in the challenging, messy process of democracy.

Tracy Simpson

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