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Point of View: The We’s Have It in Bonac

Wed, 10/11/2023 - 17:50

It’s strange, but I find I’m saying to those who oppose any further aid to Ukraine, which to my mind indicates they’re comfortable knuckling under to Putin, “Move to Russia, then,” a refrain that a right-wing correspondent — maybe more than one — wished upon me in the days when I said Gorbachev ought to have been given some credit too for ending the Cold War, not just Reagan. Things apparently have come full circle in the past 34 years.

Frankly, how anyone cannot be appalled by Putin’s butchery, by his bombing of schools, churches, hospitals, and apartment buildings, is dismaying, as is the prospect that this country may once again be led by an aspiring dictator who thinks the law, so needed by any polity that professes to be concerned with equity, does not apply to him.

A letter writer to The Times the other day, Chris Protopapas, said that Trump’s “followers would love to be able to get away with and do what he does, whether it’s cheating on taxes, grabbing women, or sitting on gold-plated toilets. This is what liberals don’t understand: Mr. Trump’s moral and ethical failings are a feature, not a bug.”

If so, we, as a country that has supposedly been interested in justice, fairness, civility, and the common good —  that is to say, interested in the democratic ideals that first arose in ancient Greece — seem doomed.

It says “Forever” on our stamps, and we say we live in the UNITED States, but I wonder.

Still, when it comes to this town I’m not inclined to despair. There remains a “one for all and all for one” feeling here that if projected nationally would be salvific. People are working hard, people are volunteering in numerous ways on behalf of others. In short, I think that East Hamptoners, their political slants aside — see above — are fundamentally community-minded. I think the “we’s” have it in Bonac. 

And perhaps, if that assumption is so, it’s rooted in the knowledge that we should show thanks for living in such a beautiful place. 

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