~a column by Colleen O’Brien
If women are legislated out of any personal choice when it comes to what to do with their fertilized eggs, isn’t the equivalent next step to legislate men out of spilling their seed?
If contraception becomes illegal, will that include condoms? And if so, who gets punished? The user? The used? The seller?
If the leader of a democratic country refuses to talk to some of the Press and talks only to the Press that does not press hard questions on him but does help him think, is this considered dissent-suppressing behavior by a strongman with a state-allied news media at his beck and call, or is he still considered an elected official of a representative democratic republic?
If the leader of a country affects through higher and higher tariffs the farmers’ incomes and the jobs of people working with steel and aluminum (computers, autos, strollers, refrigerators) … is there recourse for these farmers and workers?
Shall we unleash the dogs of war and with that act make more veterans in need of rehabilitation, or shall we spend that money on existing veterans, education, healthcare in general, climate change, infrastructure, peace?
If a country’s Role-Model-in-Chief tells at least three lies a day, how many times a day is it okay for my children to lie?
If I am served a subpoena, I don’t really have to show up in court, do I?
If I get elected President of a country and say the oath of office — “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States” — and I don’t do those things, are there consequences? Or is oath-taking meaningless?
If I get elected President on a campaign promise to help the working people but once elected help the rich people much more thoroughly, does that mean I’m a liar? That I just have a bad memory? That it’s just too bad for everyone who’s not rich?
If I get elected President and disrespect all the people who did not vote for me or who are critical of my “work,” does that mean being President of only some of the people is just fine?
If a leader of a country says that his avoidance of paying taxes makes him smart, does that mean that all of us who continue to pay taxes are stupid?
If the leader of a country behaves like a bully, which includes calling anyone in the world by a fourth grade-level derogatory nickname, does this increase bullying in the world?
If a world leader refuses to admit mistakes or apologize for bad behavior, what do his people as well as people around the world think of him?
If I were a powerful person and I incited fights and vehicular homicide, would I get blamed for it? Would I be made to apologize for it? Or pay for it in some way?
If a world leader is illiterate re: the historical facts of his country’s long-term international nation/state friendships and alliances but praises killer dictators – to their benefit – should he be held to account for endangering his country because of his ignorance? Is it willful I-don’t-care-ism he needs to be taken to task for? And what if it does no good to attempt to educate him about his own country?
If a world leader demonstrates racist, sexist, religionist, ageist words and deeds, what might the rest of the elected officials in that country do about it?
If we know the record of a leader who (1) trash-talks about the opposite sex (on tape, perhaps), and (2) calls women who do not look like models by ugly names, and (3) has a published record in news articles of cheating…and then we ignore all that and elect the man anyway, does that mean we just have to put up with it?
If before the next election, this ruler stands in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoots somebody, will it lose him no votes?