Notes from Indian Country
How many clowns can one fit into the Senate car?It has been said by many wise people that if you elect a clown to office you can expect a circus. And I expect that the impeachment of Donald Trump hearings will closely resemble a circus by the time the head clown and his supporting clowns go into their acts. Trump is the one going on trial and yet he has produced no documentation or witnesses to speak up about his supposed innocence. That is not normal in any court proceedings. As a matter of fact just the opposite has occurred. Trump has blocked the testimony of key witnesses and has refused to turn over any documentation. Now does that sound like an innocent man? “It’s a hoax and witch hunt,” he screams and then pushes out a parade of lies as his only defense. Many of us are convinced that there will be no “impartial hearing.” Ninety nine percent of the Republican senators will attempt to defend the undefendable. Have you ever heard of a trial where there were no witnesses or documentation permitted? Not in my lifetime. But that is the way this Nation has evolved. There is no longer a GOP (Grand Old Party). In its place are a bunch of sniveling cowards and sycophants. I think the word “obsequious” best describes the present day boot lickers once known as the Republican Party. GOP now stands for Greed Over People. I know so many once loyal Republicans who once believed in honesty and justice and who believed in fiscal responsibility and would have cringed at the amount of money demanded by this demented man for his ridiculous wall that he claimed Mexico was going to pay for and who have suddenly become Independents or have even changed political parties. When America had a deficit about to exceed a trillion dollars every Republican I used to know would have been screaming to the high heavens. I still have Republican friends I can talk to and I find that they are as bewildered as so many Americans about how and why this country had taken such a negative turn. Racism that was being addressed as evil has now become a strong element of the core belief of the Trump diehards. White supremacists are out in the open and are marching down the streets chanting “Jews will not replace us.” Even Indigenous people are shouted at and told to “go back to where you came from.” Are we regressing to the Dark Ages? It seems that everything we were taught in school about liberty, justice and equality mean nothing anymore. What the politicians are destroying is a way of life; a way of life that was once the example of Democracy and a free world. The rest of America is painfully learning what Native Americans have known for generations. “All men are created equal” was never factual. These were just words on an official document just waiting to be erased. Those dark features of America like white supremacy, racial injustice, and a world of American autocrats has always been here, but were just lying dormant ready to resurface when the opportune time arrived. It seems that the time has arrived. Everything the Founders feared has awaken. The true face of America today will be on full display as the impeachment hearings of the 45th President of the United States play out. Will the America you grew up with, an imperfect America that was trying to change, hold its own or will the dark side of America that has always lurked in the shadows resurface?
All of the American people who are good and who have never lost the values instilled in them by a just America need to stand up. The freedoms you thought you held in your hands for so many years are about to be snatched away. Most of us thought this day would never come but here it is. With mounting evidence there is no doubt that Trump abused his power and attempted to obstruct Congress. If Republican members of the U. S. Senate cannot open their minds long enough to see the obvious, what hope is there for the rest of us? It surprised me as a journalist to see that nearly every major newspaper in America had huge headlines on their front page, above the fold, that read TRUMP IMPEACHED or words to that effect. And yet our local dailies and weeklies buried this story of the century somewhere in the D Section. This greatly added to the anxiety I am already feeling about the outcome of this impeachment.
Tim Giago, an Oglala Lakota, was born, raised and educated on the Pine Ridge Reservation and is the founder of the Native American Journalists Association. He was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard with the Class of 1991. He can be reached at email@example.com
Note: Content copyright © Tim Giago
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