Analysis & Comment

Opinion | What This Election Means for America

To the Editor:

For the first time in my long life — 88 years — I fear for my country. I was always proud to be an American, though I didn’t flaunt it or wave flags. I’ve been a Republican and an independent.

I fear for my country because I see our government in Washington unable to govern. The division between the parties is so bitter that our representatives and senators can’t work together to address our serious problems — immigration, infrastructure, health care, education, the inequality of wealth, the environment, the poor and hungry, and much more.

I see a demagogue president who mishandled the coronavirus pandemic and fosters chaos all over the country. I see the wealthy in America cynically avoiding their fair share of taxes while the federal deficit soars to a record $3.1 trillion.

I see friendly nations around the world pointing fingers at our once great country and once noble leadership. I see a president who is deliberately undermining the election. I see a ruined Republican Party, exchanging love of country for position and power, displaying rank hypocrisy over the Supreme Court.

I especially fear that if our current president is re-elected, he will feel encouraged to divide us even more, that there will be more chaos, and that at some point it will become too late to save our beloved country. I never before prayed about an election, but I’m praying now.

Jim Marquardt
Sag Harbor, N.Y.

To the Editor:

As a member of the Greatest Generation, I don’t think my lifestyle will be affected by the presidential election. However, it will have a profound impact on my children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

President Trump did a remarkable job with our economy, wages and employment, including minorities, before the March setback of the virus. He was able to do this despite constant attacks and zero cooperation from the Democratic Party.

I think the most important fact in his success is that Mr. Trump is not a politician and a member of the Washington swamp. As a businessman, he brought totally different and much-needed new philosophies to the office of the presidency.

What do the American people really have to lose by giving him a chance to continue his agenda without obstruction for four more years? Just imagine what he could accomplish if he is also given a Republican House that will work with him.

Cliff Lindroth
San Diego

To the Editor:

If Joe Biden is elected, there will be a giant whew of relief across the land, but, other than removing President Trump from office, what actually do voters expect? Some norms will be re-established — less name-calling, greater willingness to work with overseas allies on climate and nuclear arms initiatives, more respect for laws and the Constitution, greater deference to expertise, less encouragement of far-right extremists — but little will be achieved to address why so many people voted for Mr. Trump in the first place.

Perhaps his election and popularity owe something to racism and xenophobia, but much of that is the result of economic uncertainty: good jobs sent overseas, high school educations that prepare graduates for manufacturing jobs that no longer exist, college loan burdens, the disappearance of jobs for older people, the disappearance of pensions and health care benefits, the growing disparity between the salaries of top executives and wage earners, and on and on. People who might have displayed greater tolerance of diverse groups in decades past now see them as existential threats.

Joe Biden will restore sanity to the White House, but he is not likely to eliminate, or even substantially reduce, the causes of unrest that led to so many voters to opt for Donald Trump. He will need to be pushed hard to develop programs that address the economic uncertainty that has generated so much fear.

Daniel Grant
Amherst, Mass.

To the Editor:

I am voting for Joe Biden, but the vote is more a vote against President Trump. It is important for Democrats in Congress to realize that a Democratic 2020 sweep is not a vote for radical change; it is a vote for moderation. Otherwise, the party risks rejection in 2022 and 2024.

Martin Darvick
Birmingham, Mich.

To the Editor:

Four years ago women held a march, mourning the election results and vowing to work diligently to get rid of Donald Trump and Trumpism.

I suggest that when Joe Biden wins this election we encourage the country to launch a spontaneous celebration to express our joy and to convey to Mr. Trump our determination not to be thwarted by any possible tricks. We’ll call it Operation Clean Sweep. At a predetermined time, men, women and children will mobilize on the main streets of America to march, each carrying a broom to celebrate the clean sweep.

Robert H. Schaffer
Stamford, Conn.

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