Editorial, Letters to the Editor

Off the Rails!

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To the editor:

Last week’s events have shaken me to the core. There seems to be a concerted effort to attack our democratic institutions from MAGA Republicans who are willing to use their political power to crush any opposition and ignore democratic rules in the advancement of their own agenda.

The Tennessee Republican legislature expelled two African American representatives on the pretext that their behavior was out-of-line with the Republicans’ sense of proper decorum. That blatant abuse of power has effectively disenfranchised the electorate, many African Americans, whom Justin Pearson and Justin Jones represent. Expulsion from that legislative body has happened only three other times in the history of the state, all serious offenses.

If MAGA Republicans can so easily stifle dissent in Tennessee, where will they use that strategy next?

A Federal Judge in Texas, an avowed anti-abortionist and MAGA Republican, invalidated, without authority, the Food and Drug Administration 23-year approval of Mifepristone, an abortion medication that has been proven safer than Tylenol. Moreover, he found that the medication could not be sent by mail under an 1873 law, including to those states where abortion is legal, like in Vermont.

If a Texas judge can decree that only his interpretation of when life begins is the law, what happens when other Republicans in power use that same strategy in other areas of our lives? Can one Texas MAGA Republican impose a “Christian” theocracy on the women of Vermont?

Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives, Kevin McCarthy, and other MAGA Republican legislators, many of whom tried to undermine the transfer of power to President Biden prior to the January 6 attack on the Capitol, are illegally intervening in the N.Y.C. attorney general’s office on-going investigation of Donald Trump in the Stormy Daniels case. Regardless of one’s opinion of this case, it is illegal to interfere with those cases.

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has been receiving gifts in the millions of dollars for over twenty years from a major Republican donor, Harlan Crow, but not disclosing them per legal requirements. Nor did Thomas recuse himself from cases that involved Mr. Crow. Those blatant ethical violations seem to permeate the current MAGA controlled Republican party: we are above the law. Remember, Thomas’s wife, Ginny, is being investigated for her role in the plot to force Vice President Mike Pence to declare the counting of the Electoral College ballots favoring President Biden null and void.

If you, too, are deeply concerned about these attacks on our democratic Republic, please contact me at [email protected]. When we unite to fight against extremism, our power is multiplied. Remember, the best way for fascism to succeed is for enough good citizens to do nothing.

Bob Hawk

E. Hardwick

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