To the Editor:
In recent days, protestors carrying weapons and wearing Trump, Nazi and Confederate insignia, have confronted Democratic governors to demand that Covid-19 social distancing orders be lifted. In Michigan, their cars blocked ambulance access to a hospital. Protestors demand that governors “reopen” their states, public safety be damned. “When it’s my time to go, God’s going to call me home,” one said, with disregard for the safety of others. The protests themselves endanger lives, congregating in tight groups without masks, handing out candy to children with bare hands.
Conservative media figures and officials have encouraged such protests, to “free” the states, suggesting that controls are excessive. In one such tweet, President Trump cited Second Amendment rights on bearing of arms. In another, he called Governor Whitmer of Michigan “Half-Wit-mer.” She responded that she supports citizen’s rights of assembly but protests must be conducted “in a manner that doesn’t put their health or the health of our first responders at risk.”
Seeing Trump’s tweets as incitement to riot, some ask if he is above the law. As we learned from Mueller, a sitting president will not be indicted, so the remedy is impeachment, which is unlikely.
The underlying problem is that our system of justice and government can function only if citizens respect it. With what Trump is doing and saying, we may be losing that respect. Ultimately, it falls upon the people…on November 3rd.
Let us hope, on that day, that anti-Trump voters turn out in sufficient numbers to overcome all the Republicans’ various voter suppression campaigns.