Trouble in Mind
Re “Is Trump Planning a Coup d’État?” by Sasha Abramsky [September 21/28]: I believe the answer is yes. Jeanine Pirro on Fox News asked President Trump what he would do if there was a “threat of riots if [Democrats] lose” and how he would handle people protesting the outcome of the election. He stated, “We’d put it down within minutes…. It’s called insurrection.” That is the first time I heard him use the word “insurrection.” Since he labeled peaceful protest with this term, I believe he would justify attacks on protesters, stating that these citizens are revolting against the government. His comment is the kind of language we associate with dictators. And it could indicate he is willing to use violence against protesters—violent or peaceful. He has, for all of his time in office, expressed his adoration of authoritarians while he has shunned our allies. I believe his wish is to become an authoritarian himself and to continue taking away our freedoms by tearing apart our Constitution.
The rancid possibility is finally getting the kind of serious attention it deserves. But the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Mark Milley, and other senior military officers need to come out right now and state clearly that any attempt by Trump to refuse to leave office if he loses the election will result in his immediate removal—if necessary, by force. The country’s armed forces can allow zero ambiguity about this: no chance for Trump to commit treason, declare martial law, and torch the Constitution just so he can keep his greasy grip on power. If the troops let themselves be ordered to lock down the nation on Trump’s say-so, what’s left of our democracy will die.
The NLRB’s Age-Old Problem
Re “An Agency Against Itself” by Michelle Chen [September 21/28]: As a lawyer with the National Labor Relations Board for over 32 years who retired in 2013, I object to this quote from an NLRB staffer: “We’ve had some incredibly bright attorneys hired in the last five or so years who are jumping ship.”
There were plenty of very intelligent, even brilliant lawyers at the NLRB long before the last five years. Prior to my retirement, we were constantly told that the new lawyers there were superior to the ones previously hired. At the time, the agency was rampant with all kinds of unlawful discrimination, including age discrimination. Many senior lawyers were forced out under the claim that their work wasn’t good enough, even though they’d had very good or even excellent ratings for many years.
A Notable Distinction
In “There Is Power Without a Union” [September 7/14], P.E. Moskowitz mentions “the ongoing uprisings against law enforcement.” It isn’t law enforcement as such that has people’s backs up. It’s bad cops’ immunity from paying for their misdeeds.