By Ruth Gadebusch
Yes, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R–S.C.), enough is enough—more than enough. It has been more than enough for weeks now, actually months before the November election. Where have you been? What do you propose to do about it now? I mean more than making a statement. It is a day late and a dollar short just to make pronouncements.
In little more time than it took to write those words, the senator had reverted to his old ways. He was again supporting the President who had incited insurgence against the U.S. Government. Yes, the same government the senator had long been sworn to support.
It was not enough for Graham to have the fame, the honor of being a U.S. Senator representing the people of his state. Apparently, he is so needy for attention that just a few days after he uttered the words, “Enough is enough,” seemingly suddenly remembering his responsibility to the people of South Carolina and to the citizens of this nation, he hopped on Air Force One for one last ride with the man whom it appeared for that ever so short time the senator was ready to denounce—not denounce the man but rather the tactics of the man who for four long years served in a job for which he was obviously ill suited.
It does not take a deep study of history to learn that the only President to have no previous experience in government before being elected has made us the nearest thing to a banana republic that we have experienced. Never has there been more of a threat to the peaceful transfer of power than at this time. The peaceful transfer of power has long been our most basic principle, the one held as a beacon of light to the entire world.
Worse yet is the foundation of lies in which this President indulged with the support of Graham and other members of their party.
Despite the thorough monitoring of our 2020 November election making it one of the cleanest ever held anywhere, the President and his supporters initiated 61 court challenges. They lost 60 of them but continued to claim over and over that he won, that the election was stolen from him, that his supporters must fight to take back the country. Space does not permit it, but there is no need to list all the instances here. They are well-documented and clearly delivered to supporters of the President encouraged by such as the senator.
Amazingly, the Republicans, or Retrumplicans, as one news commentator dubbed them, were “surprised” when the thousands invited by the President to come to Washington bent on following his instructions to stop the final step of certifying the Electoral College votes on Jan. 6 did just that.
Never mind that it was the Electoral College votes that had put Trump in office despite not receiving the majority of votes in 2016. Having been told they must fight for their rights, the crowd came prepared with weapons.
Urged by the President to march to the Capitol, the crowd did just that and there are those who act surprised. How in the world were they ever smart enough to get elected to Congress?
Now the President has the unprecedented “honor” of being impeached a second time. There are those members of Congress claiming it is purely political or moving too fast. What does it take to realize the seriousness of the situation? They fled into hiding to save their lives.
How much more evidence do they need? They were there. They heard the language from the President and from the mob desecrating our sacred symbol and injuring many. They witnessed it all. Accountability is the bedrock of law and order, the same law and order for all of us.
This is written a day before the inauguration of a new President, without doubt one of the most qualified ever. Qualified by experience, by character, by temperament and the majority vote, actual and Electoral College. As if the pandemic wasn’t troubling enough, we have had to fortify the District of Columbia and many of our state capitals just to protect our longstanding peaceful transfer of power.
I remember being horrified seeing law enforcement on every corner in East Berlin under the Russians. Now I watch our own capital fortified much more than that of any prison. How sad! And all due to such sycophants as Sen. Graham and his colleagues turning their backs on the oath they took to protect this nation observing the laws of the land.
We have a challenge before us to overcome the damage of the last four years, but we have an opportunity with the superbly qualified leadership at the helm by the time you read this. President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, the first female Vice President, offer promise. It is up to us to give them the support this nation needs to rebuild our reputation in the world as well as our own safety.
We have had enough of the poison of failure to respect the rights of all, the denigration of those unlike us, putting political power before the good of the country, and, most of all, the failure to put truth at the top of the list.
We have had enough of the turmoil of the last four years. Let us renew our commitment to the principles dreamed by our founders. We have a new day awaiting us!
Ruth Gadebusch, a longtime community activist, is a former naval officer, elected member of the Fresno Unified School Board, member of the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing and an emeritus member of the Center for Civic Education. The League of Women Voters, in its recognition of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, named her in its list of the 100 Most Influential Women in Fresno.