The world watches hypnotically as the US electioneering process descends into a chaotic parody of verbal abuse culminating in physical violence. The voice of sanity has yet to prevail. Mockery turned to disbelief as the army of supporters who turned out to listen to Donald Trump began to cast their votes. Today we are forced to acknowledge that he has maintained his lead to gain the nomination of the Republican Party.
Such is the panic among his own party members that all efforts are being made to block his nomination even if he gathers the most votes. Those of us unfamiliar with the complexities of the US voting system are understandably puzzled that votes cast can be potentially over ruled by the power elite who in the end decide the nominee.
For some the spectre of a President Trump is too awful to contemplate, when he states that he would ‘leave it to my generals to decide’ on whether to use the nuclear option. His crass comments on abortion and his attempts to redefine them when challenged are an indicator of how spectacularly ill equipped he is to sit in the Oval Office.
Yet none of this matters for he is not attracting votes for his statesmanlike qualities, his knowledge of foreign policy or even trade but perhaps for his candour. People are voting for him precisely because he is not talking like a politician. He is providing a voice for those who have been too long ignored and dismissed and is stating what those outside America have known for decades; the United States are not United and while this may be the land of the brave it is certainly not the land of the free.
Donald Trump is an agent for change, a man whose time has come, the momentum is building and the tipping point has been reached. Whatever the vote the anger of the American people will create the change which could have and should have come about through social reform and compassionate governance. This movement is not confined to America, all over the world the people are claiming what is rightfully theirs, from the Arab Spring to the Occupy Wall Street and the Black Lives Matter movements. When they appear to have run their course and for a time splutter and seem to die it is not the end, the energy rises again and can not be suppressed.
While Trump may well be an agent for change his job is to reveal the inequalities and corruption inherent within the so called democracy. We need another to take us forward to the next step. Bernie Sanders, America’s longest serving Independent politician is also proving to be an enigma, uniting the young and funding his candidacy by supporter’s donations. Trumps campaign is self funded and both can claim a degree of financial independence from Wall Street. We await the long term significance.
Change never comes about easily and to quote Martin Luther King, power is never surrendered willingly. Many steps will be needed, it requires courage to acknowledge when we can no longer reform something. Then it must be replaced. This is the cycle of dissolution which must occur before we can build again, inevitably a period of seeming or actual chaos ensues. To achieve success we can not use the old systems or rely on those who built them to reform them. Most of all we should ensure we are no longer shackled to those who would inevitably enslave us again. When all things are in place America can become ‘the shining city on the hill’ the beacon of hope we once believed it to be.
“A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have.” –Thomas Jefferson