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IT is time. It IS time. It is TIME. Seriously.

It's. Time.

It is time for every resident of this nation to stop and take stock of the direction the needle on their moral compass is pointing. This action is timely and necessary and important: The future of the democracy of the United States could very well hang in the balance.

If you still believe that President Donald Trump has the best interests of the United States in his sights--not just when viewed from one or two of your hot-button issues but the best interests of this nation--and his every action is designed, truly, to make American great again, then you are where you ought to be, where you deserve to be.

If you believe that God speaks through the evangelical leaders like Franklin Graham and Robert Jeffress who preach that Trump was anointed by the Holy Spirit to save America from degradation, then ride the president's coattails into the future.

If you believe that Trump and his family and the chosen aides and Cabinet officials are doing a public service in serving this country and trying to create a sustainable government for the betterment of every level of society, then stay on that bandwagon and hang on tight.

In those cases, there is nothing anyone can say or do that will change your mind. You have bought into the hype of The Art of the Deal, believe in the power of force of reality television, etched the unholy words of Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Lindsey Graham, Laura Ingraham, Kellyanne Conway and Rudy Giuliani into your brain, and your parroting of those words is instinctual and fixated.

The political pabulum words of President Donald J. Trump are chaff in the wind to any person who reads, researches and watches anything but the delusional Trumpeters infecting Fox and Friends and listens to the night-owl commentators on that channel.

There's a big, wonderful world of reality out there that goes beyond the sharp-tongued commentary of Rush Limbaugh; Sean Hannity is a fast-talker who has never seen the truth in one single negative comment about our president; Lindsey Graham, who went from Trump-basher and skeptic to perpetual sidekick, called him a "kook," "crazy" and "unfit for office" during the 2016 presidential nomination run. Now, the same man is a saint and Graham gets his jollies playing golf with him.

Graham, once known for his bipartisan dealmaking and pointedly passionate stances on basic human-rights issues, is kowtowing to Trump for two reasons: being next to power feels powerful, and looking to guarantee his re-election as senator from South Carolina.

Every one of his national supporters--political, religious or electronic talking heads--Trump's over-the-top personality, current support against abortion and his solid 35 percent base of followers are the keys to their infatuation and infinite fawning. Forgotten by all elected Republican leaders are the conservative mantras of "party of Lincoln" and "fiscal responsibility" and "balanced budget" and "world's leader."

Trump has been allowed to change the dynamics within the party to a point where the GOP brand is a mere shadow of its former self. Now, it's to hell with balancing the budget; to hell with working within a global framework for the betterment of all people, bring on isolationism; to hell with reason and honesty in public servants and good government programs to assist people in need, regardless of where they live.

America needs clear-headed thinkers right now, people who understand this country has gone cattywampus in a relatively short amount of time, and we all need to stand together to right the wrongs that are being shoveled on this nation and the world daily.

At this point in this nation's history, it does not seem that a majority of citizens are thinking with their hearts or heads; heartfelt emotions tempered with research and reason will provide more positive outcomes than following the edicts from a television flack or a public official more concerned about his electability than what is good for the country.

We need more leaders like John McCain and Jeff Flake, who put their personal health and political viability aside. We need to exclaim loudly: "The emperor has no clothes!"


George S. Smith of Sutton is a former longtime Arkansas editor and publisher.

Editorial on 10/10/2019

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