Bob Rinearson (March 30) wrote about showing some “common sense” about voting for a Supreme Court justice, while Election 2016 demonstrated that a majority of voting Americans can't be persuaded of the merits and decency of our system. That freedom rests on the moral confidence of America. If Americans can't be persuaded of the merits and decency of our democracy, how can I, for example, go to India and China as I have done in the past and continue that in the future as I've been asked to do? If the voters believe we can reset the life of our nation in an hour as my Christianity teaches, how can I make a difference in the lives of the Indian and Chinese university students I teach? If the president the voters elect terrifies our allies and the free world, how can anyone make a case to ordinary Chinese, Indian and Russian students?
The global erosion of political freedom is largely taking place in the democracies, including the U.S. Why? People are losing faith in freedoms that no longer deliver on the promise of a fairer life. The recent 20 years in America have seen political polarization lead to ineffectual governance, the recipe for dysfunction. Normal governance was stalled at whim by the opposition party. In fact, the antebellum Southern Democrats on the eve of the Civil War, history shows, is the only major party to exceed the procedural and party radicalism of the GOP led by Mitch McConnell as the party of “No!” Nevertheless, the modern Republican Party is in charge of our federal government and the minority Dems seem to have adopted McConnells' opposition game plan. Is the road to democracy the way of the buffoon?
The hurdle to the promise of a safer, richer, fuller, fairer life for health care is the laissez-faire zombie in the Republican tent. If the debate is ever to be durably settled, it will have to be won not just in economics but through politics. But at this time, the core problem we face is the white anxiety crisis that includes the twilight of white Christianity. Even J Street is calling Israel an “occupier.” Yes, a Jewish group in America is today telling their story about the Israel of today led by “Bibi.”
Finally, Rinearson's point about using Robert Bork as the equal case of what happened to Merrick Garland is insane, which is a legal term. But we are living in an insane post-truth world of politics.
Before Gorsuch, there was Garland. Before Garland, there was Estrada. Before Estrada, Roberts and Kagan. Before Kagan, Bork. Before Bork, Haynsworth. Before Haynsworth, Forts. All were blocked, at least initially. So? Where was common sense? Hiding, huh?