Dear Brooklyn Readers,
In my last letter, I spoke about the importance of being an informed electorate. I shared how unfortunate it was so many of us fell for Russia’s misinformation campaign on social media. And how that led to a divide-and-conquer strategy that successfully peeled away millions of Democratic voters.
I even talked about that moment, about a year outside of the 2016 election, when life-long Democrats and perfectly reasonable voters suddenly began parroting things like, “There’s something about Hilary Clinton I don’t like; she’s just as bad as, if not worse than, Donald Trump.”
And now, about a year outside of the election, I’m beginning to see it happen again over social media: Democrats slowly are enrolling in a new defeatist mantra: “Donald Trump needs to go, but I have a feeling he’s going to win.”
Me: Why do you say that? Do you really believe that? Do you not plan to vote?
Them: Yes, I’m going to vote. And I don’t know why I say that; I just think he will.
Call it a lack of faith in our electoral process. Or call it self-management of expectations. But I call it “BS.” Trump’s latest Jedi Mind Trick on Democrats clearly is beginning to take root. He’s convinced even his opponents he will win.
By now, we know Trump is a habitual liar. This penchant he has for lying has become a part of his character, because, for decades, it has been rewarded. He looks for the desperate, the downtrodden, the angry, the uninformed– those who seek elevation by association– to follow his lead, because they believe their options are limited. That is his base.
But how many of those qualities now embody his opponents? Are we also so angry and uninformed, so downtrodden and of the belief our options are so limited we should acquiesce defeat? Even if those aren’t the precise intentions, they have the same effect.
I was taught that words have power: They are prayers, proclamations, incantations … spells! When words are repeated, a new seed of reality begins to grow. This is how language is formed; how the words “ain’t” and “conversate” eventually ended up in the dictionary. It’s also why prayer within any religious faith by the masses works miracles. Words matter, because words speak truth– or in this case, untruths– to power.
Donald J. Trump understands well the power of words when spoken over and over and over … He may not be the handsome, well-read, kind or trustworthy person we had in our former president. But what he definitely is, is a gemini, a master communicator, a words manipulator. And he knows exactly what he’s doing when he lies… and lies… and lies some more. He’s casting a spell of sorts…
Trump’s rallies represent more than a self-possessed man eating from the trough of his narcissism. Each rally is church; the congregation’s chants are a mass prayer for Trump’s reelection. And big things do in fact happen for those who believe.
So, it is important, as we head into Election 2020, we not only believe in Donald Trump’s defeat, but also, we are intentional in speaking it to power, every opportunity we get.
I choose to say very little, negative or positive, about the Democratic primary candidates– not because I have no one I favor, but because words matter. It was during the primaries when the divide-and-conquer strategy that drove away Bernie Sanders voters first took root. So, for whichever Democrat is nominated is who I’ll vote.
Because this next presidential Democratic candidate will defeat Donald Trump. Donald Trump will not be reelected.
Amen. End of story. And because words matter.
C. Zawadi Morris
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