Robert Reich: How To Deal With The Trump Threat – OpEd


The 2024 general election is now underway. 

Like most of you, I’ve found myself immersed in many conversations about the threat to our nation — and the world — posed by Donald Trump. 

Just to be clear, I’m not talking about conversations with Trump supporters. I’m referring to conversations with people who are fully aware of the damage Trump has already done and the even greater danger he presents if reelected. 

Understandably, many of the people I talk with express rage and despair. 

It’s natural that we want to share our anger. Someone who has attempted to jettison the rule of law, unleashed violence on the U.S. Capitol, and seeks to wreck our constitutional system is once again the candidate put forward for president by the Republican Party. Why isn’t he already imprisoned? 

When rage is driving us, despair is often in the passenger seat. It’s easy to feel dismayed that so many of our fellow Americans (sometimes even within our own families) have been seduced by this man and manipulated by his Republican lapdogs and the right-wing media. Our hearts ache for our nation and the ideals on which it’s based, and for the previous generations that have sacrificed their lives in service of those ideals. 

I’m convinced that Trump can be beaten. But to ensure Joe Biden’s reelection, we must communicate effectively and concretely with one another about how to do so and what we’re going to contribute to the effort. We cannot be spectators. 

Over and above feelings of rage and despair, we need to emphasize the urgency of defeating him along practical lines with steps all of us can take: getting out the vote, identifying and engaging voters who are on the fence, doing our damndest to discourage potential Biden voters from voting for third-party candidates, and focusing on winning swing states. 

We must not allow our rage and despair to get in the way of communicating such urgency, developing such strategies, and committing to effective action. 

The next 33 weeks will test our individual and collective capacities. We need to stay focused on what must be done. 

Trump is neither inevitable nor invincible. Democracy is our precious legacy, and we must do everything humanly possible to preserve and strengthen it.

This article was published at Robert Reich’s Substack

Robert Reich

Robert B. Reich is Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley and Senior Fellow at the Blum Center for Developing Economies, and writes at Reich served as Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration, for which Time Magazine named him one of the ten most effective cabinet secretaries of the twentieth century. He has written fifteen books, including the best sellers "Aftershock", "The Work of Nations," and"Beyond Outrage," and, his most recent, "The Common Good," which is available in bookstores now. He is also a founding editor of the American Prospect magazine, chairman of Common Cause, a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and co-creator of the award-winning documentary, "Inequality For All." He's co-creator of the Netflix original documentary "Saving Capitalism," which is streaming now.

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