By Basia Alicia Powell
It is election season for many countries. Trinidad and Tobago, and Jamaica just completed theirs. Demonstrating to the world that their democracy is still working. On November 3rd, it will be America’s turn to speak, after 4 years of President Trump and his administration, or should I say, “his family”.
It stands to reason, that if The United States Commander- in-Chief can publicly question the validity of his own electoral system, United States should be officially concerned about the sanctity of it’s democracy! Perhaps this may be a deliberate tactic on the part of the president , as it is uncommon for world leaders to announce to the world that their democracy is not real or is being threatened. The sitting president cannot scream “foul” before “shit” happens. If you are aware that the system is broken, then do something. After all, you are the president who promised to, “Make America Great Again”. You public paranoia with the ballot boxes, says more about your political leadership and governance, than it does about our democracy.
One of the things I have always admired about American democracy, regardless of the political party in power, (Republican or Democratic), is its system of checks and balances. A system that gives the power of veto to a President, but overseas it with a Congress and a Supreme Court. Nevertheless, such a system seems to be in question at the moment, by a leadership style that bears resemblances to a autocratic system.
This is not a Parliamentary system Mr President. You see in a Parliamentary system of government, “What the Prime Minister wants, the Prime Minister gets.” He or she gets multiple terms if the electorate decides. The Prime Minister even gets to decide on the date of the general elections. You don’t. Your political power is restricted (thank God). So this idea that you would like to delay elections and get an additional term, suggests to many that you are not acquainted with your own type of government. You must read up on it some more, or have somebody read it to you.
I was reminded today during my son’s homeschool Social Studies class, that the three arms of government in the United States Of America (Legislative, Executive, Judicial) are appointed to serve the citizens (the people) of the United States. Therefore, the President, the Congress, and the Supreme Court all report to the people, because they work for the people. Correct? When the majority of the people are dissatisfied with them, we get to change our representatives in Congress, and during an election we get to change our President (Supreme Court Judges are appointed for life). The American Presidential system is based on these principles. It was created to maintain our democracy to provide checks and balances. So why am I getting a feeling that America’s democracy is being questioned? Under this president, nobody is checking him. The system that has worked for hundreds of years for past Presidents, is no longer working for one?
I seem to recall, a male candidate and nominee for President in the last United States election (2016), calling on an autocratic foreign country to produce damaging evidence on his opponent “if they are listening”. That man went on to be the President of The United States. Today, for some reason he is now questioning the sanctity of the electoral system and is “advising people to vote twice.’ My question again is, ” When will America’s system of checks and balances begin to kick in under this president?” When will this president be held accountable and to the same standard as all his predecessors,, to produce his tax returns, and “real” medical records?
I have not been on this planet for a very long time, but I have been here long enough to witness the governance of other American Presidents, from both sides of the isles. Never before, have I seen so many books detailing the questionable actions and damning behavior of a sitting president. Never before have I witnessed an “inner circle” of a United States President with so many mug shots and jail sentences. It all seems “fishy” to me.
It has gotten so bad, that family members are speaking out via books and taped recordings. No matter what your party affiliations or personal convictions are, you must know that something is wrong here, and certainly question all of this when you are sitting alone, and you are thinking of the direction we are all heading in. No one knows what book will be published tomorrow about the sitting President, and his questionable allies, or what damning information will be released next. It seems to be one fire after the other.
Despite the barrage of evidence and allegations against this unconventional president of the United States, it seems like we are slowly accepting the change in our political system that once functioned as a part of a cohesive democracy. A political system that was based on a citizen’s right to vote, protest, speak their minds and demand changes from its elected government. America was not designed to be ruled by a dynasty. This is a new order. Sanctioned by who? Are we are still not functioning as a democracy? Why then did the recent Republican National Convention resemble the beginning of a “Trump Dynasty”? America is now being ruled by a family, and not a government. This is not what our forefathers intended.
The question is, would our democracy kick into action then?
P.S. Don’t Forget To Register To Vote, As If Your Life Depends On It!
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