- - Tuesday, February 28, 2017

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

I fear for the future of America. The level of hate rhetoric and fake news has become a tremendous threat to the stability of our nation. Our cherished rights of freedom of the press and freedom of speech have been compromised. Our ability to attract qualified Americans to serve the public is in jeopardy. We have become a nation unable to separate the trivia from the essential. Lost from history was the intent of our Founding Founders to encourage Americans to take positions in the federal government for perhaps one term and then return to their farms and their businesses.

Hate rhetoric and fake news have led to accusations of conflicts of interest regarding President Trump’s ownership of private businesses, that he has ties with Russia resulting in interference in the election in his favor, and that he is a bigot. The latter false claim was the result of his order for a pause in Muslim immigration until, as he stated, the government has an improved vetting system in place. This pause was reported as a ban. Much of the press shares in the breakdown of our freedoms by ignoring the famous Thomas Jefferson admonition: “A democracy is finished when the citizenry become uninformed or misinformed.”

Mr. Trump’s difficulty in filling top slots in his administration has been stymied by hostile Democrats in the Senate, some influenced by fake news and some intent on destroying the Trump presidency. The attack on successful, wealthy nominees is unrelenting. Democrats demand a full documented trail of a nominee’s history — not to judge his or her qualifications, but to dig and dig and perhaps find some trivial incident that can be blown up out of proportion to embarrass the nominee. Cases in point: Mitt Romney and a friend bullied a high school classmate 45 years previous; a comment made by Jeff Sessions 35 years ago, misinterpreted as racist.

Would any qualified American want to lay bare his life history, finances and perhaps trivial past that could be misinterpreted, embarrassing himself and his family? Is this why truly dedicated and successful Americans will not step up to the plate and accept a nomination for a high position in our government?

WARREN MANISON

Potomac

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