At the beginning of this campaign I said that Donald Trump wasn’t the problem, but rather a symptom of the problem. In the words of Isaac Asimov, “Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.'”
We live in a democratic society that depends on an educated and informed public. Thomas Jefferson believed this was required for a healthy democracy. And we are failing. We are leaving people behind through public education, we are leaving people behind through a lack of public services that care for our poorest, weakest and most disenfranchised. And people have noticed. They feel that the system is rigged against them and that people in the far away land of DC and government don’t care about their problems and struggles.
The private market isn’t going to fix poor rural communities, free trade doesn’t help bring dentists to under served communities, and people aren’t seeing equal economic gains despite improvements in the economy.
But, Republican policies don’t fix these things. Lower taxes don’t help the poorest, repealing the ACA won’t help those who can’t afford health insurance, and harkening back to the “good old days” with a slogan, isn’t a policy platform.
So what do we do? We press on. We know that progress happens in spite of trials and tribulations not because of their absence. We know that the fight isn’t over.
But we need to find a way to reach out to those who feel that the system is rigged. We need to help those who feel disenfranchised. And we need to invest in our future by improving public education.
The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.