By George B. Kauffman
When I wrote my last Guest Editorial, “Science Lessons for the Next President,” https://fresnoalliance.com/science-lessons-for-the-next-president December 5, 2016, based on a detailed article titled “Science Lessons for the Next President,” Science October 21, 2016, 354(6310), 224-279. http://science.sciencemag.org/content/354/6310/274.full, it was in complete expectation with everyone else that our next president would be Hillary Clinton.
Now that Donald J. Trump has received more Electoral College votes than Hillary, he is the presumed President-Elect, and Community Alliance readers, as well as the rest of the world now, know what nefarious plans he has in mind. In the December 2016 issue, Dale Paul Bush cited reasons why Trump was elected and why this choice was based on fascistic, misogynist, and racist trends in American society, “Thoughts on the 2016 Presidential Election,” https://fresnoalliance.com/thoughts-on-the-2016-presidential-election
While I agree with Dale’s analysis of the election, I do not share his apparent belief that nothing can be done to reverse this trend. There are a number of actions that we can take. What we cannot do is to sit back and pretend that this was a “normal” election and that Trump was and is a “normal” candidate for the office of the leader of the free world. Trump has lied repeatedly and contradicted his own words over and over again. He has promised his foolish followers who are willing to risk a change in preference to “normal” conditions. And boy! Will they – and unfortunately all of us – will suffer from it!
Trump is poised to reverse environmental regulations, reject the Paris agreement, increase greenhouse gases (GHGs), adversely impact public health, question universally accepted scientific findings, replace qualified officials with his own cronies, strike deals benefitting himself and his family instead of our country, and give away the needs of us and our allies in favor those of his intimate pal Vladimir Putin. Plans are under way to urge the Electoral College, which meets on December 19, to deny Trump enough votes to prevent his election – an extremely unlikely Hail Mary! pass but worth a try. By the time that my guest editorial appears, the result will be all over. Naturally, not all sources are in favor of it. You can check out some of these items:
Rogue Electoral College? Don’t count on it: Our view The Editorial Board, USA TODAY December 15, 2016. http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2016/12/15/electoral-college-donald-trump-hillaryclinton-editorials-debates/95447368
Electoral College Petition Now Largest In History, Susan Varandani, International Business Times, December 2. https://www.yahoo.com/news/electoral-college-petition-now-largest-114108375.html
Stop Trump at the Electoral College. http://www.savedemocracy.org/join-the-team
Malakoff, D., Republicans ready a regulatory rollback. Science, Nov 25, 2016, Vol. 354 (6315), 951. http://science.sciencemag.org/content/354/6315/951.full
Over 2 Million People Sign Petition Asking Electoral College to Pick Clinton as President Instead of Trump. http://people.com/politics/electoral-college-petition-to-make-clinton-president
Tollfeson, F.; Morello, L.; Reardon, S. Donald Trump’s US election win stuns scientists. Republicans sweep White House and US Congress, with uncertain implications for research, Nature Daily News Alert, http://www.nature.com/news/donald-trump-s-us-election-win-stunsscientists-1.20952
Giroux, H. Trump’s Second Gilded Age: Overcoming the Rule of Billionaires and Militarists. In the face of Trump’s draconian assault on democracy, it is crucial to rethink mechanisms of a repressive politics. December 12, 2016. http://billmoyers.com/story/trumps-second-gilded-age-overcoming-rule-billionaires-militarists/
Henry Giroux on Zombie Politics, Bill Moyers, November 22, 2013. http://billmoyers.com/segment/henry-giroux-on-zombie-politics
Trumping Science: Part II, by Bob Grant, December 6, 2016. http://www.the-scientist.com/?articles.view/articleNo/47676/title/Trumping-Science–Part-II/
George B. Kauffman, Ph.D., chemistry professor emeritus at California State University, Fresno and Guggenheim Fellow, is recipient of the American Chemical Society’s George C. Pimentel Award in Chemical Education, Helen M. Free Award for Public Outreach, and Award for Research at an Undergraduate Institution, and numerous domestic and international honors. In 2002 and 2011, he was appointed a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Chemical Society, respectively.