HAVANA TIMES – One of the most esteemed US journalists of the last half century is Dan Rather.  Now 88, and retired, he chimed in on Facebook about the current state of affairs in United States politics.

There is no more time for silence

By Dan Rather

Dan Rather. File photo: wnycstudios.org

There is no more time for silence. There is no more time for choosing party over country. There is no more time for weighing the lesser of two evils. All women and men of conscience must speak or they are complicit in America lurching towards a dangerous cliff of autocracy and chaos.

This is a moment of reckoning unlike any I have seen in my lifetime. I have seen this country in deep peril, as the hungry begged for sustenance during the Great Depression, as the Nazis marched across Europe and the Japanese across Asia, as missiles were moved into Cuba, as our political leaders were murdered, as a president ran a criminal conspiracy from the Oval Office, as planes were hijacked into skyscrapers. All of these were scary times, but through it all I never worried about a president actively undermining American democracy and inciting violence to do so – even Nixon, for all of his criminal activity.

What Donald Trump said today are the words of a dictator. To telegraph that he would consider becoming the first president in American history not to accept the peaceful transfer of power is not a throw-away line. It’s not a joke. He doesn’t joke. And it is not prospective. The words are already seeding a threat of violence and illegitimacy into our electoral process.

I suspect he is doing this because he feels he needs to. It is the same reason he sought dirt on Joe Biden, because he is deeply afraid of losing. Losing an election could mean losing in a court of law. It could mean prison time and ruin. But I suspect Trump’s motives are more instinctual. He needs to hold on to power for the sake of power. He cannot lose, even if he has to cheat to win. Even if he has to blow up American democracy. He considers little if any about 200,000 plus deaths from COVID. Why would he care about our Constitution or Bill of Rights?

There is no sugarcoating the dangers and darkness we live in. But I remain heartened that the majority of Americans do not want this. Trump is in danger of losing states that he should be winning handily. Yes, his base is energized and numerous. But so is the opposition. I have seen opposition parties in foreign countries channel the morality of their causes to bring great change. And most of those opposition movements didn’t have the strength, power, and resources of those who stand against Donald Trump.

Donald Trump has himself defined the stakes of the election. This is a battle for American democracy as we’ve known it. We are well past warning shots. Allies across the political spectrum are ringing alarm bells. Right now, all those seeking to defeat Donald Trump know winning a close election may not be enough. The size of a victory will likely matter. Failing that, what happens? I don’t know. But I would say we all should try to remain steady. Try to conserve our energy for the battles ahead. Be committed to your community, your country, and your conscience. If enough Americans of decency and courage come together, the future of this nation can be better, fairer, and more just.


5 thoughts on “Dan Rather: “Trump Speaks Like a Dictator”

  • And now Donald Trump Jnr is urging “Trump’s army” to be prepared ! Does the son hope to inherit an autocracy from the father?

  • It is fascinating to see this straight talk piece by Dan Rather published in Cuba. Why would America not publish the truth in this courageous, clear seeing, straight from the heart piece?

    To many, the fact of hiding the truth points to the sad reality that AmeriKa no longer cares to know and publish the dynamic truth of its hellish situation under a fake president who rants and raves like a demented child. The hidden psyche of America is on display for all the world to see. This fake president has tried and successfully cowed many intelligent, courageous people and will not stop, like all despots , to serve his own lust for power and destroy the still young dream of America.

    Mr Rather is calling out the fake president and all the cowards who won’t face up to his bully power. I have already imagined the scenario of a new civil war in America which this fake president will accelerate when he loses the election. White Power caused the first US Civil War and is now poised to push America into a new, virulent clash— all because one man with a broken mind and spirit wants power and adulation at any cost.

    Let us keep a flame of hope burning so its light can illumine the way for Americans who still dream of a More Perfect Union where caring and equality are the common goals.

  • Anyone with a grain of common sense, of any intelligence, can see what has unfolded before our eyes.. proof after proof, witnesses after witnesses, generals after generals….. I can only say there has to be a divine reason for this reign of this moronic autocratic illiterate craven despot.. History books will look back on this period of one of Americans with blindfolds on… so the latinos in Florida, many are willing to sell their souls for someone who will continue to punish Cuba… the Cubans are the ones suffering, you foolish latinos in Florida. Wake up . this is your country going down the toilet … humanity being lost, common decency, world respect…. all being tossed out .. because so many Americans put personal gain ahead .. get back to the Bible and read about Herod, Caligua and Pontius Pilate and Nero.. they also had their supporters..

  • Dan Rather provides a proper analysis of Donald J. Trump. One can only concur as I did in commenting upon the article in HT ‘Cuba Travel for US Citizens Just Got Even Harder’, that Trump’s objective is autocracy and totalita rian rule. As Rather points out, Trump has no humour, his narcissistic character prevents that, He is absolutely set and serious!

    Rather poses a key question! What if Trump manages to manipulate the election by a series of actions leading to a politically loaded Supreme Court awarding him with the Presidency? Will the people of the US just meekly accept that?

    The US almost sinks under the weight of military standard armaments – held, not by the military, but by an agitated and divided populace. Could insurrection and revolution arise?

  • These comments from Don Rather are truly apposite.
    They do not in anyway overplay the importance of 2020 in the history of the USA. If trump wins, the good folks of the USA quite simply would no longer be able to cling onto this long held idea that their country is the ‘leader of the free world’.
    I recently listened to an interview with the legendary singer Mavis Staples – far younger than Don Rather in that she has only reached the tender age of 81….
    I could hear the pain and even shame in her voice as she gave her view on what is currently going on in her remarkable country.
    But in strong and dignified tone she pointed out that the good folks of the USA had come through some difficult times previously and tellingly she was giving out a message of hope that things will get better at some point.
    If unsuccessful in his ugly push for re-election trump seems potentially willing to provoke some degree of civil war rather than admit defeat.
    With regard to decent people such as Don Rather and Mavis Staples and with regard to the wider world, let’s hope that things in the USA don’t have to get worse before they get better…………

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