Baltimore City Council takes action against President-elect Trump. (WJZ)
I was saddened to read Charlene Cowan's letter ("City councilman's first order of business? Condemning Donald Trump," Dec. 8) denouncing the first move taken by the newly-sworn in Baltimore City Council ("Baltimore City Council condemns Trump's rhetoric, days before his visit," Dec. 8). The Council passed a resolution which opposed and condemned the "rhetoric rooted in hate and prejudice, and used, approved of, or encouraged by President-elect Donald Trump targeting historically disenfranchised, marginalized, and oppressed groups." Ms. Cowan expressed concern that such a resolution might offend the incoming Trump administration and therefore hurt Baltimore's chances of receiving federal funding in the months ahead.
A shiver of fear ran up my spine as I read this letter. First of all, its narrative accepts as truth the Trump Propaganda Machine's dismissal of all opposing post-election dialogue as the whining of liberal sore losers and cry babies (Kellyanne Conway's words) who need to "get over" their personal loss and fall in line with the New Program. Unfortunately, that program is becoming increasingly clear — with the help and legitimization of undoubtedly well-meaning citizens like Ms. Cowan. For in the Trump Propaganda Machine reality, words no longer matter. They do not represent the nation's beliefs and fundamental values; they are mercurial, feral, petty, and most importantly erasable. Words do not stand for our best selves — they are tools to be manipulated to gain "victory" or whatever you need in the moment. The proof is in the pudding as the Trump Propaganda Machine keeps insisting to us: Donald Trump used the ugliest words in our nation's history to insult, degrade and belittle millions of American women, minorities, Muslims, Jews, Hispanics, immigrants, recovering veterans, physically challenged, mentally handicapped and his fellow candidates and he won. He won "bigly."
The triumph of the Trump Propaganda Machine's ideology is already evident when well-meaning citizens like Ms. Cowan can describe his hateful spoken words as "less polished comments." The fear of reprisal for speaking up engendered by the Trump Propaganda Machine's New Order is already evident when well-meaning citizens like Ms. Cowan can write a letter informing her fellow citizens that publicly opposing the new president of this nation will bring horrible things to bear upon our heads — punishment, deprivation, unspoken reprisals. But Ms. Cowan doesn't write this with even a hint of fear; she writes with the security of someone who obviously sees herself as situated on the "right" side of the Trump Propaganda Machine. Someone who believes that the New Order will be harsh for those other than herself and her loved ones. Someone who has (shockingly) accepted, and now calculates her actions based on the reality that it's best not to cross the men behind the Trump Propaganda Machine.
This letter is one of the most cynical and deeply disturbing pieces I have ever read.
Will we pay, brothers? Will we suffer, sisters? The future is undoubtedly obscure, but the past is known. The history of such propaganda machines — this is known.
Therefore, I am so thankful to live in Baltimore where the members of my City Council made it their first order of business to stand proudly up to the Trump Propaganda Machine's bullies. My City Council made it their first order of business to proclaim that words matter, for they shape our deeds. My City Council makes me proud and full of hope.