We’ve come down to this: the Top Banana has threatened to turn America into a Banana Republic.
President Trump knows his re-election bid is a long shot due to his disastrous handling of the COVID-19 crisis that has left more than 200K Americans dead and an economy in tatters.
Recognizing there are dark days ahead and a slew of criminal proceedings, Trump has gone into his default mode of cheating and gaming the system.
Since the presidency is his “stay out of jail card,” he's desperate to remain in office by any means possible. Trump has been delegitimizing the upcoming vote, charging Democrats with “rigging” mail-in ballots and suppressing turnout.
The president though overplayed his hand, On Sept. 23, he refused to commit to a peaceful transfer of power. “We’re going to see what happens,” he said.
That triggered a backlash on Twitter from his Republican enablers.
“The winner of the November 3rd election will be inaugurated on January 20th. There will be an orderly transition just as there has been every four years since 1792.”—Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell.
“Fundamental to democracy is the peaceful transition of power; without that, there is Belarus. Any suggestion that a president might not respect this Constitutional guarantee is both unthinkable and unacceptable.” —Utah Sen. Mitt Romney.
“Under our system, the American people decide through their votes, and the political leaders follow the will of the people. The peaceful transfer of power is essential to this constitutional guarantee and must be protected.” —Ohio Sen. Rob Portman.
“As we have done for over two centuries we will have a legitimate & fair election. It may take longer than usual to know the outcome, but it will be a valid one. And at noon on Jan 20, 2021 we will peacefully swear in the President.” —Florida Sen. Marco Rubio.
Republicans have backed Trump every step of the way throughout his nightmare presidency. But his bid to become America’s dictator-in-chief may have given the GOP a spine.
Better late than never.
What took you so long? Mars Food announced with great fanfare on Sept. 23 that it was retiring Uncle Ben’s brand of rice.
The brand’s image featured an elderly Black man on the packaging and the term “Uncle," which has been used as a pejorative to refer to a Black man.
Mars made the move after a three-month review, begging the question: Where’ve you been during the season of racial unrest and battle against inequity?
Fiona Dawson, global president, Mars Food Multisales and Global Customers, said the company listened to thousands of consumers, employees and other stakeholders from around the world before ditching Uncle Ben.
Mars could have saved a lot of time and energy by setting up a table in Times Square and asking passers-by if they thought the image of Uncle Ben was a racial stereotype.
The company says its removing the image of Uncle Ben to “create more equitable iconography” and is recasting the brand as “Ben’s Original.”
It is keeping the name "Ben" because Dawson says Mars “wants to keep what we can of the past.”
Go figure that one out.
Law of the COVID-19 jungle… The virus has made Americans less compassionate and happy, according to a survey by Brodeur Partners.
The Boston-based firm found a 12 percent drop in the compassionate category and a 10 percent dip in happiness from a similar relevance study that it conducted in 2012.
On the upside: COVID-19 has triggered a greater focus on financial security and career paths, especially by Millennials and Gen Zers, who are bearing the brunt of the economic impact of the virus.
Brodeur did find a silver lining on the happiness front.
It noted that the level of happiness rises with age. Thirty-one percent of Gen Z (1965 to 1980) respondents rated themselves very happy and fulfilled, a share that grew to 60% for the Silent Generation, the group born from 1928 to 1945.