It’s Up To The Women
In two opinion pieces in The New York Times on Saturday, October 17, Michelle Goldberg and Roger Cohen try to explain what they hope will happen on Election Day. And that is that Donald Trump will lose. Although current polls are suggesting that this may happen, after 2016, I don’t count anything as a sure thing.
What the two editorials indicate is that women, particularly white women—those a plurality of whom voted for Trump in 2016—will need to vote for Biden if the former vice president is to win this election. Furthermore, it is also clear that this is a tipping point election in that the country will go one way if Trump is re-elected and another if Biden wins. It will not be either man himself who will get us to the new America. We don’t know who the next generation of leaders is likely to be. The current two contenders and the leadership of Congress are so old that they cannot represent the future in any way. BUT—if Biden wins there will be one future. If Trump wins, there will be another. Even my Trump voting friends agree with this. They fear a Biden-initiated future as they see that as a radical shift to the left with the next generation of leadership coming from AOC and The Squad. My Biden-voting friends fear the skinheads will take over if Trump wins. I suspect neither is likely.
Instead, I see Biden as a caretaker for sanity. He will calm the waters and begin to piece together some semblance of bi-partisanship again. He will restore American credibility in the world and our relationships with our friends. He will sever associations with dictators and perhaps even pay a little attention to America—its roads, its bridges, its system of health care, and its system of education all of which need work and all of which have been ignored by the current occupant of the Oval Office.
Donald Trump may well have rightly identified the threat that is China. He has made remarkable progress in the Middle East and he did finally take down ISIS. These foreign policy accomplishments should not be minimized. What also cannot be minimized is the cost of the Trump presidency to our standing abroad (never lower) and our divisiveness at home (never greater).
Then, of course, there’s the manner in which he handled the pandemic that is to say—not at all. He has managed to undermine the goodwill of the CDC, the leadership of the NIH, and the independence of the FDA. Nice going, Don.
Look, no one could have prevented any deaths from covid and it was likely that the majority of the deaths would be among the elderly. But mask wearing does work according to my sources and social distancing clearly does. That being said, all that could have been done until a vaccine is developed is to mitigate the death and disease so that the health care system could handle it. We were never going to really stop the virus until a vaccine is developed. In most cities, that has worked. OK, in New York City it did not and in Italy, too. But what America really needed was leadership, candor, and facts. We got none of that and instead of having a plan to get through it, we got hand waving that it was going to go away. Well, it hasn’t. For his handling of the coronavirus pandemic alone, Donald Trump deserves to be turned out of office. Let’s hope this time, the women are up to the task.