It’s getting harder and harder to find anything good to write about. New situations do show up most of the days, but what is getting written about them is usually the same old same old. What is most bothersome is what is not being written about. The President, even though he is expert at getting the headlines, is not the whole story. I even wonder sometimes whether there is some strategy here. “Keep the limelight on me while the destruction goes on mostly unnoticed. I can get attention to my executive orders, allowing my people at the helms of the Departments to clean house.”
The newish slogan of the Washington Post, “Democracy Dies in Darkness,” carries an ominous message. The lack of transparency, secrecy, and outright lying are obvious forms of keeping us in the dark, but keeping us in the shadows is another way to achieve the same result. Blinding us by the brilliance of the news, measured in effects on the eyes not the brain, hides what is going on outside the light. I am finding that the stories below the fold (metaphorically because there is no fold on the screen) are often the ones to pay close attention to.
One of these is about a nurse who was arrested for doing the right thing. An emergency room nurse refused to draw blood from an unconscious patient brought in by the police after a serious accident. She was following the protocols that require a warrant under the circumstances that prevented the patient from giving consent. She was handcuffed and taken away. I have since read that two police personnel have been placed on leave, but do not have any other details. The thought that I had on thinking about this and other incidents involving actions of the police is that. If we are really serious about maintaining law and order, the very first requirement is that the police know the laws they are supposed to enforce.
Our laws both enclose the guilty and protect the innocent. In much case where the line between these two is not obvious to all, the law requires some form of due process. In the heat of the moment, that is often inconvenient, but still the law. The recklessness of the President and condoning of lying seems to have sent a message that police can ignore the law. Such irony, a “law and order” President foments acts of lawlessness either by ignorance, carelessness or intent.
Still looking below the fold, the President’s second trip to Texas got more positive headlines, marking him as the “empathizer-in-chief. I had to laugh. If you read my last post about how the brain works, you would have seen, at the end, my argument that Trump’s brain is so configured that empathy is not something he is capable of. The banality of his off-the-cuff comments during the visit adds evidence that he cannot capture the real world. Here’s a few sentences from the Slate website:
He then went even further and suggested there was some sort of silver lining to the disaster that has flooded the country’s fourth most-populous city. “As tough as this was, it’s been a wonderful thing. I think even for the country to watch and for the world to watch. It’s been beautiful,” the president told reporters. “Have a good time everybody, I’m going to be doing a little help over here.” He didn’t mention the dead.
There is nothing beautiful to be found in Texas right now. Yes, there are certainly stories of heroism and care, but beautiful indicates a complete failure to capture the devastation.
Summer is winding down. We will be heading back to Lexington at the end of this week. With less distraction from Mother Nature, I will try (I promise) to keep up this blog. I am still awaiting word from the potential publisher on the fate of my book.