Once again America has been impacted by a mass killing: 49 people killed in Orlando, Florida, Sunday, June 12, 2016. It shook our nation and the world.
Will it cause sigsignificant change in ideas about race, religion, sexual preference, and guns? This column doesn’t think so. I submit this country lost the opportunity to take the moral high ground when Sandy Hook exploded, challenging the conscience of this nation, despite President Obama covering our lack of response by calling it “shameful.”
America will never give up its guns. We must be honest about what we fear. We are the best armed citizen nation in the world. Yet once again, we respond with politically correct words of condolences from politicians of the left and right, as they wring their hands making “correct” statements. As a result, in this 2016 election year there is now an even greater danger presently marching over the horizon, events leading to Donald Trump being elected president.
The massacre/act of war in Orlando and its tragic consequences could make Donald Trump the most appealing of the presidential candidates. I understand that there are those who read this column who will take exception to this. I write as an investigative journalist and historian, as objective as possible, without bias, as I report on civil rights. I’m a realist, writing about what is, as a way of keeping our eyes on the prize: colorblind acceptance and inclusion.
Orlando has delivered the issue Trump needs to regain his campaign footing and thus prevail in November. If you say to yourself, “God help us,” then you are correct and you understand how dangerous and precarious the 2016 presidential political platforms are.
Experts and pundits will ask, “What will they say over the following four weeks?” How many experts and voters will have the same level of concern and horror regarding what took place in Orlando? On the other hand, how many will begin to say we must make America a great fortress again, keeping out those perceived as threatening to our safety and threatening to our moral doctrines?
Think hard about what I write in this column. Understand Orlando not as a street crime, but as another act of war. Yet since Twin Towers, we have yet to declare war on those who have declared war on us. Orlando swings the political advantage to Trump as voters ask themselves who will protect them. This demonstrates the need for the United States of America to pause to truly understand both sides of the discussions, to understand the calls for action, and what must be done to protect the future of this nation. Or do we leave the Middle East, its oil and future to Putin and Russia?
Two prime issues have now pushed Trump to the forefront: the wall across the border with Mexico, and the attempts to end immigration of “undesirables.”
Trump is more shrewd than given credit. The election will turn on whether voters want or don’t want his proposals, based on which platform they feel will make them safe in the future.
We have been a compassionate nation in the past. Will we continue to be compassionate, or will we become a nation of isolation? Our self-imposed isolation prior to two world wars almost caused our nation to lose its way in those great global conflicts.
We must be a realistic nation of fairness, compassion, justice and love. In a word: provide a seat for everyone at the table. Failure to do so threatens our future.