From the Inside
December 17, 2016
To the Editor:
Very sad, even tragic, to see that sometimes intelligent, enlightened citizens somehow do not learn from experience, are not strong nor brave enough to face and admit embarrassing reality.
The lopsided, distorted, phony, wrong polling reports prior to the elections. Like nothing happened, the very same entourage is now on the high-speed train of “Putin’s hacking,” “Wiki leaks from Russia.” I am bracing myself for the biggest, hardiest laugh of the year, and I suggest that you do too. Slowly but surely the evidence is developing, and beginning to point to the real source of the leak — from the inside of the Democratic Party. Yes, an inside job.
Disgruntled? Revengeful? Sense of humor? Who knows, who cares, as long as the truth was revealed, and a lot of it. Stand by for a monumental train wreck, a pile of demolished passenger cars. Hope that the casualties are minimal.
EDWARD A. WAGSCHAL
While We Wait
December 13, 2016
In my last letter I prevailed upon you to pass on a message to the Trump cabinet selection people. I have received a response: “No! No! No!”
I have suffered rejection: At a talent contest, a judge commented, “Diana, the castanets were fine, but the market for Scandinavian Gypsies is limited. A husband responded “Not exactly” when asked, is there anyone else?
Hubris will prevail. But while we wait, I am lifted by the extraordinary East Hampton community response to the devastating earthquake in Ecuador, fair housing issues, and police relations. We go forward into 2017 with the promise of a new agency that will bring positive dialogue and results, among, and for, the entire East End.
All good things,
Such Mean Words
December 13, 2016
To the Editor,
I wrote letters nearly weekly leading up to Election Day, hoping to convey my feelings in a civil way, my desire for Mr. Trump being elected as our next president. Needless to say, thank God there is a President-elect Trump.
Now, over one month later, liberals and even so-called Republicans are trying to undermine this president-elect in so many ways. I personally think the vile gutter talk these people speak and write is sickening and un-American. In conversations with people I want to associate with, if Mrs. Clinton had won, we decent and God-loving people would have just accepted it and moved on. I think these people who spill forth such mean words don’t like President-elect Trump, nor do they like themselves. Look in the mirror and what do you see: hate, anger, jealousy, meanness.
Thank God we have a person as the new President-elect Trump, because he will put these lowlifes in their place at every turn.
So be it!
Time to Get Over It
December 18, 2016
Please tell the Democrats, Hillary has tons of excuses as to why she didn’t win, blame is going everywhere except where it belongs, on her manager, Podesta, her campaign, and Hillary herself. Every trick in the book has come out since the election to take the win away from Trump. It’s time to get over it. Hillary lost the election.
Michelle Obama is now offering there will be no hope, because the Obamas are leaving the White House. Are you serious, Michelle? This is the America you and Obama created: racial divide, disrespect for the military and law enforcement, illegals entering our borders and taxing our schools and social services. Regardless of how many times Obama goes before the press and lies about ISIS, they are still on the rise, stronger than ever.
To all who laughed and swore that Trump will never be president, remember this, Trump won. So, George Clooney, Nancy Pelosi, take it to the bank, Bernie Sanders, Seth Meyers, Tom Hanks, Barack Obama, S. Colbert, George couldn’t-stop-laughing Stephanopoulos, Harry Reid, R. Simone, and Joy Behar, who can’t keep her mouth shut — take a deep breath and sigh. Trump won. Some promised to leave the country just like Baldwin promised. Please go.
In God and country,
‘Me Above All Else’
December 18, 2016
To the Editor:
A friend said this week that the election of the misogynist racist pig, the genocide in Aleppo, and the fire that gutted the Sag Harbor Cinema create a feeling of despair and hopelessness that leaves so many people lost in a space that they never imagined possible.
The 21st century was to be a century of hope and prosperity. The 20th, one of extraordinary brutality, killing more than 50 million people in wars, genocide, the Holocaust, had given rise to a new collective humanity and a world vision, a world where the collective well-being was viewed as something positive for everyone. The United Nations, World Health Organization, and UNICEF, lots of organizations were created to make the world a better place. Nuclear disarmament, climate control, ending war as the primary option for resolving problems. Ending poverty.
Yet somehow, the 21st century has lost its bearings of a greater world vision, and in the face of greed and avarice has returned to populism, the racist, nativist vision of “me above all else,” whatever the cost might be. The insanity of fascism, and autocratic leaders whom we had worked so hard to put in the past, has raised its ugly head, and while they present no viable option outside of anger management, it is growing wildly throughout the world.
With Trump, the disconnect from what is supposed to be the bedrock of our society — democracy — disappears. His response to the C.I.A. on Russian interference in the election is too bizarre not to question his implication in the process. The C.I.A. is the world expert in destabilizing other countries’ political processes. (See Ariel Dorfman’s New York Times Op-Ed of Dec. 17 explaining what we did in Chile in the ’70s.) No one questions its expertise. Yet, Russia screwed with our election, our democracy — and the Trump-Republican response is “no big deal.” Does a bigger deal for a president exist?
The tragedy of Aleppo threw the last 60 years of world cooperation out the window. We stood by helplessly while Assad, Putin, the Iranians, and Hezbollah slaughtered and continue to slaughter the people of Aleppo. The impotence or indifference of the world to the Syrian people destroys the basic idea that we are all in this together. We are not only not our brothers’ keepers, we are essentially brotherless.
Every word from Trump’s mouth echoes this autocratic belief. If you get screwed, you deserve to be screwed. The underside of Aleppo is an agreement among the Russians, Iran, Qatar, and Turkey to control gas reserves (50 percent of the world’s reserves) in the region.
The fire that destroyed the Sag Harbor Cinema has no political relevance. But in a time of broken spirit and extraordinary helplessness, the loss of the cinema feels like the final blow. One of the remaining treasures of the old Hamptons life, the cinema was an authentic jewel in a world of ostentatious wealth and excess. Knowing that there would always be an interesting film that would never play in East Hampton, and that the familiar faces would be selling tickets and candy, and that a slight odor of mildew permeated the cinema’s walls and carpets, gave a sense of comfort and welcome that had deserted our community.
The cinema gave us a sense of humanity and community that protected us from the cruelty of the Aleppo genocide and the bombastic autocracy of Trump, if only for a few hours one night a week. It’s hard to fathom life out here without it, just like it’s hard to fathom life in the new neo-fascist populist world that now surrounds us.