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Sonoma County Gazette
Senior Momentum

Medicine By Media?

Aug 28, 2018
by Zoë Tummillo, Communications Concepts


Yes; I am still angry. That feeling has joined forces with frustration, amazement, confusion, incredulity and (yes) humor.

There are moments when I think the White House and Congress have entered a virtual reality time warp straight out of some science fiction mind trip. The images, words and positioning that flies out of the head mouth in Washington DC no longer shocks – but, rather, is in grave danger of succeeding. It is a repetitive cadence—a simple strategy—that threatens unconscious acceptance through that repetition. It is a how-to for developing a new and frightening normal. As ragged and presumptuous as it is, it is working well upon a strange and specific segment of our Citizenry.

There’s a risk here that we must not even momentarily ignore, and must never entertain.Which brings me to the title subject that I have been chewing on for weeks: The White House’s assault on the First Amendment, free speech and freedom of the press. (It wants to move my anger to rage.)A twisted individual uses—to his advantage—the very vehicle he pretends to deride! Do the following screamers, laughers, cynics, poster-waving, supporters of that dangerous wannabe monarch even realize that their actions and voices would be silenced if the provisions of the First Amendment were actually shut down? (What? No more yelling “Lock her up?” “Send them back?”)

It’s probably a virtue of my older age that I no longer have enough of that youthful supply of huge passionate energy available, and can’t wholly process out my fair share of the kind of strong action that carried the women’s movement and the equal rights campaigns to success! I am left with what I can drum out on my laptop, one-on-one conversations and the usual letters and petitions...Free media“the enemy of the people?” How does he get away with that mantra?Free speech, dummy!

Where is Congress? Between denying his own country in several amazing ways, in the company of known enemies of the United States, and trying to tear down the First Amendment—where is the power of Congress? Where is the censure for behavior bordering on treason if not treason itself? Is there no one in the Senate or House (in his own party) who has the courage to remind that man of the oath he took and which he blatantly, religiously and regularly flaunts with disrespect? Are all meekly complicit and don’t give a damn who sees it?

Our children and grandchildren are watching... many have already been cheated by not having been taught our American history. They have been denied the challenging lessons we learned in Civics class—what our government is, how it works and for what it strives. Some have strayed so far that they join marches brandishing swastikas—with no comprehensive insight to what it meant, means or does. The leadership fails twice: first denying them our history; second—through Congress’ inaction—allows a flawed leader to flourish while attempting to take away from them what they take for granted, and what they do not realize is at high risk.

I tried, in recent days, for a lighter Septembery column, but my heart is breaking for my country. And, anyway, someone else said it so right:

“Oh, it’s a long, long while from May to December, and the days grow short when you reach September.... when the Autumn weather turns the leaves to flame, one hasn’t got time for the waiting game...Oh the days dwindle down to a precious few –September, November... And these few precious days I’ll spend with you, these precious days I’ll spend with you.” (“September Song” by Willie Nelson)

November.... You know.


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