One of the saddest lessons one may glean from history is that the people with the most fervent love for their country are sometimes complicit in its destruction. Although there are many examples, one classic case is Nazi Germany.

When we think of Nazis, images of jack-booted thugs come to mind. In reality most of Hitler’s ardent supporters were basically decent folk – the kind one would love to have as one’s neighbor (unless one happened to be Jewish). Their only fault, if it can even be deemed one, was their blind loyalty; their inability to see what was obvious to the rest of the world and even to many in Germany itself – that Hitler in the long run would destroy Germany. And this he certainly did.

Today we are witnessing the destruction of our country, not physically as was the case with Germany, but its image and moral fiber. Because of our president’s unending barrage of falsehoods, our country now has zero credibility.

Nothing emanating from the White House can be taken at face value. In addition our reputation for reliability has been destroyed. No treaty or agreement that we have signed is now worth the paper on which it is written. Anything we have agreed to today may be scrapped on a whim tomorrow. Leaders of our traditional allies have been insulted while brutal dictators have been praised.

We have been made to look ridiculous in the eyes of the world when we have a president who believes that wind turbines cause cancer and that global warming is a Chinese hoax. Who can forget the derisive laughter that greeted Trump’s proclamation to the assembled world leaders at the Untied Nations that he was the greatest president that the world had ever seen? The ambassador of our closest ally, Great Britain, wrote in a confidential memo to his government (which was leaked) that our administration is incompetent and erratic.

The opponents of Trump are prone to depict his supporters as stupid and racist. It is reprehensible that these detractors, in resorting to insults and demeaning comments, have chosen to act like Trump himself. In any case their malicious depictions are far from the truth.

Although Trump is supported by neo-Nazis and the KKK, much of his base comprise decent folk who love their country. The tragedy is that despite this love they are now complicit in our country’s demise, which is already well underway. Sadly many will remain blind to the moral destruction of our country until the harm done is permanent and irreversible. The coming year will determine whether we learn from the lessons of history or whether we will doom our country to even greater destruction.

John Rogan

Tillamook

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