Whether it’s from a spouse, lover, clergy, parent, child, doctor, boss, employee, co-worker, police officer, member of the public, someone online, or the president, abuse isn’t normal and it’s not okay. It’s not okay when it’s from a faceless company against their customers. It’s not okay when it’s approved by a legislature or a church. Abuse is wrong in all of its forms.
There is a fundamental right to live without abuse. How that is best achieved depends on the circumstances, but that it be achieved is not up for debate.
The current executive officeholder is abusive. He has abused his office. He has abused the employees of that office. He has abused the media, and he has abused the public. He slings abuse on our international partners.
It’s not normal, it’s not okay. Having support from a single American to every American does not make abuse okay. Cheering on abuse does not change the fact that it is a violation of humanity.
The normal response to abuse is to cut it off. To separate and avoid the abuser. That’s not always possible.
The current administration engages in all the signs of abuse. They trivialize major problems, including the failure to release Brett Kavanaugh’s records and the jailing of migrant children. Also seen in the pretended outrage that journalists dare question them.
The president goes on regular tirades on social media, lashing out in an uncontrolled and jealous fashion. He isolates the country, scaring off our allies that might speak up against him. He dehumanizes critics. He lies constantly. He threatens retribution for criticism, and in the case of John Brennan, James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, and others, he and his administration took real and tangible steps to enact retaliation. He has regularly called for investigations into political opponents.
In time, congress may find itself in a position to intervene and stop this abuse. But the media has a vital role today, to not give abuse a platform. Wherever this administration crosses the line to abuse, the media should state it as such.
As media consumers, we also have our role to play. If you read about or watch news or peripheral media covering abusive events, acknowledge that the behavior is abuse, whether the article or presenter does so or not. Whether it’s an individual or group being abused, remember that the real target of public abuse is the observer. The abuser wants you to avoid speaking out, to accept eir dominance. Do not do what e wants.
In due time, this wretched man will be gone. The abusers’ days are numbered. As a society, we should make abuse in all its forms a relic of the past.