On Not Attending the Inauguration

Bruce Maples (bruceinlouisville@gmail.com)
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Congressman Yarmuth has joined a growing number of members of Congress who have decided to skip the upcoming inauguration. I have two thoughts about this:

  1. Normally, this would be the wrong thing to do. One of the hallmarks of American democracy is that when you lose an election, you lose graciously. You show respect for your opponent, because that’s how it is done. And, if it’s a Presidential election, you attend the swearing-in ceremony in order to show that the nation and the peaceful transfer of power are of more import than partisanship.
  2. But, as I’m afraid we will be saying often for the next four years, these are not normal times, and this President is not normal. He has shown disrespect to women, minorities, our military, and to anyone and everyone that has crossed him. He refuses to put his business holdings in a blind trust, creating a Constitutional crisis and causing our allies to mistrust him and us. As the Congressman has said, Donald Trump refuses to respect the office, the work, or the American people. To attend this inauguration as if it was just another inauguration is to accept all of this, to normalize it. And that we must not do.

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