Let’s do a little imagining together.
Imagine a man with an authoritarian, conspiratorial, and mercurial temperament who praises Saddam Hussein, Kim Jong-un, and Vladimir Putin; tweets quotes from Mussolini and images from antisemitic message boards; invites the demagogic and un-American chant from audiences, “Yes he will!”; and says he’ll do everything “really fast, believe me,” as if he neither knows nor cares that the Constitution has severe legal checks and balances on the divided branches of government.
Imagine such a man on the verge of reaching the White House.
Now imagine that same man, angry at a free press criticizing him, publicly threatening Jeff Bezos, the owner of The Washington Post, that if he reaches the White House, Bezos is going to have antitrust laws and the IRS directed his way because he “can’t let him [Bezos] get away with it” (owning both The Washington Post and Amazon).
Now imagine that this very same man invites from his audiences the following chant directed at his political opponent, who also happens to be a woman: “Lock her up!”
Imagine still further that he not only doesn’t rebuke the chant, but says he agrees with it.
That’s where we’re at in 2016. If Clinton loses, she may literally have to leave the country to avoid a midnight knock on the door by Federal marshals.
Oh, but one might say, Trump is only joking. He wouldn’t hurt a fly.
Are you prepared to risk America’s future on that bet?
Hitler in Mein Kampf made a plethora of outrageous statements and threatened to drive the Jews out of Europe and into Palestine, but few took him at his word. They downplayed his public statements.
Again, what sort of risk are you prepared to take with the country–with your life and the lives of your children–that Trump won’t be so bad?
If Trump reaches the White House, I think people are going to look back and say, “We should have taken what he said more seriously.” He’s not clowning. He’s not just a harmless and naughty teddy bear who doesn’t know what he’s saying. He’s dangerous. He’ll have access to everything from tactical nuclear weapons to federal marshals to the CIA.
And in a crisis, he’ll be the sort of person who escalates.
That’s what we’re facing. This isn’t a nightmare. It’s not a novel. If Trump wins, we’re not going to wake up on November 8th living in the same country. The loss of the separation of powers can happen here. It is on the verge of happening here. It’s real.