I was shocked by the Jan. 6 attempted overthrow of the U.S. government by some of President Trump’s supporters and right-wing terrorists. I shouldn’t have been. It was the logical next step on the trajectory of American politics since Trump took over the Republican Party and his propaganda campaign of the last six months. So, what is next? I would guess more violent riots and domestic terrorist attacks against our society and government. Some right-wing extremists want a civil war.

I have come to believe that the leaders and members of the Republican Party are in the best position to save the country from anarchy. Too many Republicans have pledged allegiance to Trump over the United States. In an effort to stay in power, the GOP’s leaders, nationally and here in Maine, have made anti-government conspiracy theories the foundation of the party, rather than its historical conservative principles. Only members of the GOP can change that.

Too many national and Maine GOP leaders have remained silent, unwilling to stand up and clearly condemn Trump and the violent rioters. A Martin Luther King quote in this newspaper’s Jan. 17 edition sums it up well: “There comes a time when silence is betrayal.”

What can members of the Maine Republican Party do? What about independents? GOP members repulsed by the propaganda and events since the election need to say so. For those friends and acquaintances who left the Republican Party disgusted by Trump’s immorality, hold your noses and rejoin so you can vote in future primaries. Independents should consider doing the same.

A GOP with a larger number of voters who can discern the difference between misinformation and facts, and lies and truth, would provide some much-needed ballast, countering the Trump cult, while remaining a viable second major American political party.

 

George Seel

Belgrade

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