By now, I’m sure you heard about the anonymous letter delivered to Parker Council Member-elect Erica Daniels. The letter writer threatened to report her to the Arizona Attorney General’s office for falsifying her campaign papers if she didn’t resign from the Council.

Daniels made a pre-emptive strike and brought the letter and her response to the attention of authorities and the Parker Pioneer. Despite what the letter writer claimed, Daniels said she lived within the Town of Parker limits. She had been living in a rented home because her legal residence is being renovated following a flood.

The letter writer claimed Daniels had broken the law by not living at the same address for at least a year. Arizona Revised Statutes says a candidate has to live in the district he or she is running in for at least a year prior to the election. It says nothing about how many places a candidate may live at during that year.

What’s strange is Daniels hasn’t even been seated yet, and she’s already facing threats and harassment.

Of course, Parker is not alone, nor are we the worst. These have become all too common in American politics. Since the 2020 election, for example, election workers all across the nation have faced harassment and threats on the grounds they “stole” the election from then-President Donald Trump. Many have quit.

Consider what happened to Arizona House Speaker Rusty Bowers. He was censured by the Arizona Republican Party, and state GOP Chair Kelli Ward told Republicans not to vote for him in the Aug. 2 primary. Imagine that:  a party leader taking sides in a primary election.

What was Bowers’ sin? He refused to go along with Donald Trump and Rudy Giuliani’s strong-arm tactics to overturn the results of the Presidential election in Arizona. He said doing what they wanted would violate his oath to support the Constitution. Bowers had worked for Trump’s reelection in 2020.

Bowers also effectively killed an “election integrity” bill that included a provision that the legislature could overturn the results of local elections around the state.

For this, Bowers had demonstrators at his home, and was called a hack, a traitor and a pedophile.

By the way, Bowers called that provision regarding overturning local elections “fascist.” Some have been calling the Republican Party fascist for some time. It’s interesting to hear a Republican call something his own party does fascist.

There are other areas where this sort of threatening and intimidating is taking place. You saw the recent dust-up over a proposed “Drag Story Hour” at the Parker Public Library? That’s nothing compared to what’s happening at a library in Bonner’s Ferry, Idaho.

In that town, conservative activists have been harassing and intimidating the library staff over 400 books they want banned from the library’s shelves. The library director quit due to the harassment. The weird part is the library currently doesn’t have any of the 400 books that were listed. Apparently, that doesn’t matter to the activists.

The activists are also upset the library wants to join the American Library Association, a trade organization. They say the ALA promotes pedophilia.

At least the Parker people were, for the most part, courteous and reasonable, at least in public.

We have too much anger and self-righteousness in this country. There are too many people who believe their side is absolutely right and anyone who disagrees with them on anything is an enemy to be obliterated. This is what leads to people disregarding the truth, the law, or even common decency and courtesy.

I keep hearing about “100 million patriots” who are going to “take our country back.” Uh, what about the other 220 to 230 million Americans? Don’t they matter? Are you going to ignore them, tell them to shut up or treat them like enemies or second-class citizens? I get the impression that’s what many of the MAGA candidates intend to do if they’re elected.

To those who ascribe to these views, I have news for you:  those 220 to 230 million other Americans are your neighbors and your fellow Americans. We all live in this wonderful place called the United States of America. We need to be able to at least get along, or America will cease to be wonderful and great.

I even hear talk of civil war. Look at how many Americans were killed in the last civil war we had. Is this what they really want? Another civil war could mean we would have only 100 million Americans left.

Americans, we need to come to our senses. We need to learn to love each other. We need to be kind to one another, and treat each other with compassion and respect. We need to work together to get things done. We don’t have to agree on everything, but we can agree to disagree. We can also see each other as full individuals, not just political views. Reasonable people, even those who disagree, can talk things through and reach a consensus. That would be a lot better than what we have now.

If we don’t do these things, then America will no longer be America. We will have only ourselves to blame.

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(1) comment

Michael Roth

America is already no longer America! The Constitution is hanging by a thread. If you run for office as a Constitutionalist you get labeled a whack job, an extremist with extreme views. And if you uncover fraud and abuse at the highest levels you get put on special watch lists and even harassed. The only way we will get our way of life back is for more good people to resist. Resist tyrannical laws. Resist elected officials who try to control your life. Resistance is victory. We’re not going to vote ourselves out of this mess.

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