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Divide and Conquer: The AN Politics Thread


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Divide and Conquer: The AN Politics Thread
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turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2022-09-02, 08:06



I didn't watch the speech, but did Joe really stand in front of a red illuminated building talking about the need to eradicate his political opponent? All while "promoting unity"?

I mean, Gizmodo did an article about how Trump supporters are filling their diapers. While I didn't read that article either, it seems like it would support this assertion.

What was the actual point of the speech?

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
  quote
709
¡Damned!
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Purgatory.
 
2022-09-02, 09:00

Quote:
Originally Posted by turtle View Post
I didn't watch the speech, but did Joe really stand in front of a red illuminated building talking about the need to eradicate his political opponent? All while "promoting unity"?
No, but you'd think so if you only get your information from right-wing media sources.

Quote:
Originally Posted by turtle View Post
What was the actual point of the speech?
To fill MAGAt's diapers, apparently. Watch for yourself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by turtle View Post
While I didn't read that article either, it seems like it would support this assertion.
  quote
turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
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2022-09-02, 09:14

Quote:
We must be honest with each other and with ourselves,” said President Biden, continuing, “too much of what’s happening in our country today is not normal. Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans represent an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our Republic.” His remarks came as he spoke on democracy and “the soul of the nation,” from Independence Hall in Philadelphia. The president stressed the importance of upholding democracy for all, and asked the nation “to come together, unite behind the single purpose of defending our democracy, regardless of your ideology.
So I clicked the link and that is the heading. I might watch the video given it is only 30 minutes, but does he address Antifa or BLM? How about any ultra-left group for that matter?

Understand, I'm not trying to incite strife here in AN. We generally respect each other even if we disagree on subjects. I come here because we can have a civilized discussion.

I'm not a "Trumper" or MAGA flag waver, though I do believe our nation is heading in the wrong direction. Socialism is not where we should be going.

I will try to watch that video so I can speak for myself on what I see though.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
  quote
kieran
Tweeting @kierankelly
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2022-09-02, 11:12

While I understand you bringing up Antifa and BLM, only one group has actually stormed the US Capitol and tried to overthrow the government: MAGA Republicans.

While far fringe groups on both sides clearly do not represent the vast majority of people in the US, one side is fighting for social justice and social welfare, while the other side is fighting to overturn elections and seed doubt in any future election in which they don't win.

Hell, a lot of Republicans are tweeting this week that the ranked choice voting in Alaska disenfranchised Republicans, even though the system was overwhelmingly approved by Alaskans and the Democratic candidate would have won on a straight vote anyway. Republicans split their ticket and couldn't consolidate behind a single candidate and it lost them a congressional seat.
  quote
kscherer
The Ban Hammer
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Boyzeee
 
2022-09-02, 11:20

This is where the politics go.

You sillies can name-call all you want in here.
  quote
Frank777
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Toronto
 
2022-09-02, 12:26

Quote:
Originally Posted by kieran View Post
While I understand you bringing up Antifa and BLM, only one group has actually stormed the US Capitol and tried to overthrow the government: MAGA Republicans.
Wait, I thought that if you wanted to overthrow the U.S. government you needed an F-15 fighter jet?
  quote
turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2022-09-02, 13:26

So, I actually watched this video and I find it very hypocritical. The whole point of this is "down with Trump and his supporters." While at about 14:30, Joe talks about violence in the streets and protests like that being unacceptable and yet Antifa and BLM did just that with nothing stopping them. Violence isn't acceptable in this country but who is prosecuting the violent protestors in those actions?

I'm glad people are doing time and being held accountable for Jan 6th, but where is that for those destroying cities, personal property that isn't theirs? While saying he won't stand by and watch, what did he do? What did his party do?

If you all where honest with yourself and remove a party affiliation or even a political ideal, how is allowing cities and personal property to be destroyed while letting those caught walk free with no punishment acceptable? The rule of law was quoted multiple times in that speech and yet I'm seeing law breakers walk free to commit the same crimes again and again. I'm seeing police being personally attacked and defunded and yet we operate under the rule of law? How can anyone not see the hypocrisy here?

So really, it was a Biden pep rally with a slam of a political opponent. Of course he isn't going to point out his faults, I get that. However, I do see him as being the pot calling the kettle black. There is no way that is makes sense how this "speech" was anything but dividing the country and an attempt to discredit Trump more than he has already done himself.

Heck, Joe has apparently put out a statement this morning to "clarify" the divisiveness spoken last night.

709,
I didn't bother reading the article from Gizmodo because with a title like that, clearly it is nothing but bias. Here is a reference for you though with the URL where you can feel free to read it if you wish.
Gizmodo title has been updated, but the URL is still mostly the same: gizmodo.com/donald-trump-fill-diapers-joe-biden-speech-maga-twitter-1849488910


As an armchair look on this, Joe would have been better off not targeting Trump or his supports but rather promote the agendas he thinks should be moved forward. Liz Cheney was voted out because she moved from what she stood by to who she hated. Who wants a politician who focuses on who they hate as opposed to the good they are going to do/are doing?

I think Joe did more to galvanize the far right than he did to draw people more center.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
  quote
kscherer
The Ban Hammer
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Boyzeee
 
2022-09-02, 14:30

Quote:
Originally Posted by turtle View Post
I think Joe did more to galvanize the far right than he did to draw people more center.
Bingo!

Remember when Hillary Clinton called the right a "basket of deplorables"? That kind of attitude is what got Trump elected in the first place. Repeat your mistakes to your own destruction. If Democrats don't want Trump reelected, the best thing they can do is stop calling his supporters names.

- AppleNova is the best Mac-users forum on the internet. We are smart, educated, capable, and helpful. We are also loaded with smart-alecks! :)
- Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. (Mat 5:9)
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Matsu
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2022-09-02, 19:03

https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlo...b9f_story.html

I think we have to get past comparing right and left fringe groups. Mostly this is a kind of “whataboutism” used when the Right wants to play victim. As far as security threats go Antifah and BLM aren’t even gnat on America’s morbidly obese ass. Compared to right wing militias and white supremacist groups - whose threat is real, present, growing and verified by credible law enforcement and national security experts (like the FBI among others) - the threat of left wing terrorism in the US is little more than an invention by right wing “rage farmers.” The left has its problems, but the threat of lawlessness, much less terrorism ain’t coming from them.

I’ve been thinking about this a lot as I get older. I find I don’t fit neatly into left-right political axes. I have a lot of sympathy for different sets of ideals from both sides. I don’t particularly care for the quasi-intellectual identity politics of the left, it’s pernicious and counter productive, and often disingenuous. It’s beginning to endanger a generations’ capacity for critical thinking and objective reason. I don’t particularly care for the historically veiled discrimination on the right, and despise what’s become its open celebration of ignorance masquerading as legitimate skepticism.
  quote
turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2022-09-02, 19:40

The story you linked to has zero relevance to the fact that Joe and his administration did nothing about the damage those "peaceful" protestors were doing and the hard they were causing. People lost their livelihoods and property while the admin did nothing.

This isn't about "oh yeah, we aren't as bad as so and so" or we aren't as bad as you. However Joe came out swinging and he has blood on his hands. He's pointing at the MAGA crowd as the ultimate evil in this land and yet the most damage they have done was one protest on the Capital building. Those in that protest are being punished, what about the ultra-left? Where are their court hearings and what charges are being filed on them?

Your perspective is far different from mine. You say the ultra-right is worse, but they don't have the same track record. In fact, other than a couple of protests that were pretty bad, they have been tame. Compare that to any other protest since around that start of the pandemic. The MAGA crowd wasn't destroying cities. Burning down buildings and hurting those in their way.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
  quote
Frank777
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Toronto
 
2022-09-02, 20:36

I still can't get over how the visuals of that speech are just off-the-wall insane.

As many have said on Twitter, they CHOSE those visuals to make their case.

What kind of people are in charge here? They looked at that stage and thought "this will demonstrate that our enemies are the fascists."
  quote
Matsu
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2022-09-02, 21:10

Notwithstanding that far right terror outnumbers far left by about 5:1 in comparison of plot/incidents/murders, context also matters.

BLM protest related damages are not acceptable, but they are part of a different problem. The protests themselves are a response to unacceptable racial violence that continues to be visited against black people by the institution that is supposed to serve and protect them. Often BLM protesters have been met with violent counter protest which should be factored equally in the damage tolls to public and private property. The protests themselves more closely meet the definition of civil unrest, not terrorism.

Far right terrorism, not protest, plots and kills with significantly greater frequency, and what’s more tends to emanate from within police, military, and ex military communities which compound the seriousness of the security threat.

I don’t really care about Biden’s speech. I just don’t think there’s any real equivocations to be made between BLM problems and right wing extremist problems.
  quote
Quagmire
meh
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2022-09-02, 21:17

Quote:
Originally Posted by turtle View Post
The story you linked to has zero relevance to the fact that Joe and his administration did nothing about the damage those "peaceful" protestors were doing and the hard they were causing. People lost their livelihoods and property while the admin did nothing.
You do realize all that occurred before Biden's admin? You do remember who was president during 2020 when that shit went down?

If you want to label all the protests as violent during BLM protests, then every single person who thinks 2020 was stolen, those that went to the main Jan 6th rally( but didn't go to the capital) should be locked up and labeled as a traitor and insurrectionist as well. You know damn well the majority was peaceful, but with bad elements mixed in. Just like January 6th rally had( IMHO stupid), but peaceful people then the idiots who decided to take it a step further and storm the capital. But of course the media you decide to follow only shows the violence. Still remember Fox News showing an image saying it was Place A, but it was really Place B that occurred weeks/months ago just to feed their narrative.

BUT...... Certainly both sides need to do better at policing their own side vs doing the hypocritical pointing out when the opposing side does something stupid, but ignore when they themselves pull the same stupid maneuver.

giggity
  quote
drewprops
Space Pirate
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Atlanta
 
2022-09-03, 06:11

I have been busy elsewhere, but this thread is interesting.

First of all, I'll grant that the stagecraft didn't project peace. But that's it.

Biden was NOT the President when those protests resulted in property damage and loss of life. That happened on Trump's watch.

None of the other former Presidents stole classified documents, lied about stealing them, then complained when they were shown to be lying about stealing the classified documents, comparing them to overdue library books. AND he wants to pardon and apologize to the people who are going to the pokey for attacking the Capitol? How is this even a real thing?

I don't want to live in a totalitarian socialist state, but I'm not willing to usher in a totalitarian fascist state to prevent it.

Let Democracy Work.


...
  quote
PB PM
Sneaky Punk
 
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2022-09-03, 09:26

Quote:
Originally Posted by drewprops View Post
I don't want to live in a totalitarian socialist state, but I'm not willing to usher in a totalitarian fascist state to prevent it.

Let Democracy Work.


...
Sadly this seems to be the way we are headed in the west, democracy is dying because people simply don’t believe in it. The thing that saddens me the most is I hear the left and the right scream out, “democracy!”, and “justice!”, but both sides only believe it to be democratic/just if you agree with them 100%, anything else is totalitarian/fascist/communist etc.
  quote
turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2022-09-03, 09:50

Quote:
Originally Posted by Quagmire View Post
You do realize all that occurred before Biden's admin? You do remember who was president during 2020 when that shit went down?

...
So all the protests stopped and the cities all returned to normal on Joe's election? Wow, you remember things way different than I do. Don't worry, feel free to google it.

You do realize I'm not justifying those idiots to raided the Capitol building right? Remember, I want then held accountable too. I have sworn an oath to protect and defend the Constitution and I still hold to that oath even though I'm a civilian now. All I'm saying, over and over again, is that the far left "demonstrators" aren't being held accountable for their actions and in some cases being promoted to do so.

The right has "MAGA and the Jan 6th incident" where the left has BLM and Antifa that stand out. Sadly those left groups have whole years of activity with no repercussions where the Jan 6th group is still working their way through the courts and getting real sentences.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
  quote
Quagmire
meh
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2022-09-03, 10:05

Quote:
Originally Posted by turtle View Post
So all the protests stopped and the cities all returned to normal on Joe's election? Wow, you remember things way different than I do. Don't worry, feel free to google it.

You do realize I'm not justifying those idiots to raided the Capitol building right? Remember, I want then held accountable too. I have sworn an oath to protect and defend the Constitution and I still hold to that oath even though I'm a civilian now. All I'm saying, over and over again, is that the far left "demonstrators" aren't being held accountable for their actions and in some cases being promoted to do so.

The right has "MAGA and the Jan 6th incident" where the left has BLM and Antifa that stand out. Sadly those left groups have whole years of activity with no repercussions where the Jan 6th group is still working their way through the courts and getting real sentences.
Here is a source you would like..... FOX.

https://www.foxnews.com/us/2021-protests-riots

Sure there were protests and sometimes it turned violent with OMG arrests! Sounds like the violent elements getting held accountable.

giggity
  quote
turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2022-09-03, 12:51

Interesting article. I don't actually use Fox News so this was something I've not seen before. To the point about that article, how many who were arrested actually stayed in jail, were prosecuted or otherwise actually faced charges other than catch and release? General searching isn't promising that they were anything but catch and release. This might be good for sport fishing but sucks for criminal management. However, really that is a problem with blue political management, not the President. He does the country, not local and state level affairs.

Checking the link did bring me to this response from DeSantis though which I happen to find very well stated and to the point.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gov. Ron DeSantis
[Biden's speech] was one of the most disgusting speeches an American president has ever given. He ran as being a unifier, and he's basically saying to the vast majority of the country that disapproves of him that they're effectively a threat to the republic. He dodders, he lashes out. But at the end of the day, his policies are why there's so much opposition to him.

He came in and he opened the border, and we've seen what a disaster that's been. He kneecapped American energy. We've seen how that's hurt millions and millions of people across our country. They've inflated the currency. We have one of the worst inflations we've had in over 40 years. So of course, people are going to be upset at all the wreckage that he's left in his wake. He is the American Nero. He's a failed leader.
The first paragraph is the kicker and why I started this thread. For running to "unify" the country he did the exact opposite in this speech. He did more to alienate and segregate the people than he did to unify. Now he did it based n political view, not skin color though it is the same result.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
  quote
Quagmire
meh
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2022-09-03, 12:58

Biden opened the border, yet same time fought to keep Title 42 in effect that allowed for quick removals of illegal immigrants.

Allowing them in to quickly kick them out?

https://www.npr.org/2021/09/20/10389...immigration-po

That’s a speech aimed at his own campaign aspirations.

Note: I can’t stand politics. It’s dirty, manipulative, etc. I’m pissed off at both sides even though I know I’m not coming across that way in this thread. Yes turtle the violent elements of BLM, etc should absolutely be held accountable. If the left controlled cities are not doing anything to prosecute them, then it’s an absolute joke. Just like it’s a fucking joke we have the right doing gymnastics over January 6th and the raid at Mar a lago. But the primaries are showing if you cross dear leader, you get voted out. You’re only a true republican if you’re 100% loyal to Trump. It’s the same on the left. Progressives pissed at Manchin and Sinema for being moderates. This move to “purity” is going to destroy this country. Politics is not a sports game. If you can’t call out your own side and criticize them for their actions, then this country has no hope.

giggity

Last edited by Quagmire : 2022-09-03 at 13:09.
  quote
turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2022-09-03, 13:09

Well, as I said, the first paragraph was really the point of me sharing it here. Also the reason I (ultimately started the thread, thanks Ken) because it was so hypocritical of creating unity.

Creating unity in two very different groups is hard. But name calling and finger pointing has NEVER unified a group like that. Unless it was to get both groups to finger point and name call someone else together.

So I'm not delving into ever facet of how I disagree with Democrat/Progressive/Socialist political views. We would all just have agree to disagree here.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
  quote
Quagmire
meh
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2022-09-03, 13:14

Quote:
Originally Posted by turtle View Post
Well, as I said, the first paragraph was really the point of me sharing it here. Also the reason I (ultimately started the thread, thanks Ken) because it was so hypocritical of creating unity.

Creating unity in two very different groups is hard. But name calling and finger pointing has NEVER unified a group like that. Unless it was to get both groups to finger point and name call someone else together.

So I'm not delving into ever facet of how I disagree with Democrat/Progressive/Socialist political views. We would all just have agree to disagree here.
Replied before I got my edit submitted, but his speech containing BS instantly discredits the whole thing. I get it, it’s politics. But DeSantis is just another scumbag in line with all the rest of them. Both sides want to continue to divide us as a country. Don’t think for a second if DeSantis becomes president in 2024, he will act like a unifier either. It’s not how these power hungry maniacs stay in power.

giggity
  quote
chucker
 
Join Date: May 2004
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2022-09-03, 13:46

Quote:
he's basically saying to the vast majority of the country that disapproves of him that they're effectively a threat to the republic
Have they tried not attacking a government building if they don't want to be seen as a threat? Just spitballing.

The majority of the US (but indeed not a vast majority) voted for him; that's why he's President.
  quote
PB PM
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2022-09-03, 14:14

Quote:
Originally Posted by chucker View Post
The majority of the US (but indeed not a vast majority) voted for him; that's why he's President.
Only 66% of American's even voted in the last Presidential election. 51.3% of those voted for Biden and 46.8% for Trump, and 1.8% for others. Biden scraped by would be more accurate. Biden did win the majority of spots in the electoral collage. Gosh the American system seems needlessly filled with bureaucracies.

Even in places like Texas, which one would think of as being hard core republican, Trump had less than a 10% lead in votes, and only 3.3% in Florida. The election was reasonably close in all but middle part of the country, California and few states in the north east.

Last edited by PB PM : 2022-09-03 at 14:24.
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chucker
 
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2022-09-03, 14:18

Quote:
Originally Posted by PB PM View Post
Only 66% of American's even voted in the last Presidential election.
Yes, well, US elections aren't mandatory…

Quote:
Originally Posted by PB PM View Post
51.3% of those voted for Biden and 46.8% for Trump, and 1.8% for others. I would hardly call that "the vast majority".
I did say I disagree with "vast".

Quote:
Originally Posted by PB PM View Post
In a parliamentary election that would be a minority government.
How so? In a parliamentary election, the Democrats would have gotten 51.3% of the seats and been able to form a majority government.
  quote
PB PM
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2022-09-03, 14:26

Quote:
Originally Posted by chucker View Post
Yes, well, US elections aren't mandatory…
I did say I disagree with "vast".
Yes I mis-read that, which is why I edited my post.

As for the rest, again was edited, poorly formed thoughts, posted too soon.
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chucker
 
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2022-09-03, 15:28

Quote:
Originally Posted by PB PM View Post
Biden scraped by would be more accurate.
I dunno. Recent electoral votes:

Biden
306
Trump
304
Obama
332
365
Bush
286
271
Clinton
379
370

So yeah, he didn't quite get the votes Obama and Clinton got. Otherwise seems pretty average.
  quote
turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2022-09-03, 15:28

Quote:
Originally Posted by PB PM View Post
...
As for the rest, again was edited, poorly formed thoughts, posted too soon.
I struggle with this in these kind of thread specifically. Normally I really don't care about specifics and such but something of a "charged" discussion like this and I have to work hard to get my thoughts down clearly. Something tough to do where you rarely reread what you've written and let alone proof it.

Of course, if I don't respond when I see it I end up forgetting about it and never reply. Either because the moment is gone or I've completely lost interest anyway.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
  quote
Matsu
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2022-09-03, 17:45

I’m going to avoid left and right here, but let’s just run with this thought for a bit. I’m not sure unity should ever be a primary goal. Who are we asking to unite? To use an antiquated term, and in the antiquated sense, shared “virtues” are needed before we can talk sensibly of “unity”, or there’s nothing with which to bind people. Democracy and Patriotism are just hollow terms unless preceded by some virtue that enables them. They are earned, not given. I believe there are still enough people who share certain essential enabling virtues - knowledge, curiosity, creativity, independence, sound judgement, courage, resilience, self-sacrifice - but not so many that we can take it for granted they will easily carry a growing number who don’t. Certain deficits endanger the critical mass needed to sustain a democracy: these are psychical rather than political. All the talk of extreme left and right is misleading in a way.
  quote
turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2022-09-03, 18:01

Well this is an interesting tweet.
Quote:
Watch the moment CNN slowly adjusts the camera settings when the blood-red lighting behind Dark Brandon is looking a little too authoritarian.

By the end, the stripes on the American flag are pinkish-purple.
Never mind the "anti-Joe" talk, but it sure does look like CNN shifted the color of the speech.

It is really prevalent in the CNN video. Now, I don't know if it was doctored for the tweet (as in faked) or if CNN really did change the color, but it sure looks like they did compared to the CSPAN video.



Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
  quote
drewprops
Space Pirate
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Atlanta
 
2022-09-03, 22:51

I'm as visually stimulated as the next guy, but criticism of the visuals is a yawner for me this time around. I don't know if you heard or read the actual speech so I'm including it below, so you can concentrate on criticizing the message:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Biden
My fellow Americans, please, if you have a seat, take it.

I speak to you tonight from sacred ground in America: Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pa.

This is where America made its declaration of independence to the world more than two centuries ago, with an idea unique among nations: that in America, we’re all created equal.
This is where the United States Constitution was written and debated. This is where we set in motion the most extraordinary experiment of self-government the world has ever known.

With three simple words: we, the people; we, the people. These two documents and their ideas they embody — equality and democracy — are the rock upon which this nation is built.

They are how we became the greatest nation on earth. They are why, for more than two centuries, America has been a beacon to the world.

But as I stand here tonight, equality and democracy are under assault. We do ourselves no favor to pretend otherwise.

So, tonight, I’ve come to this place where it all began to speak as plainly as I can to the nation about the threats we face, about the power we have in our own hands to meet these threats and about the incredible future that lies in front of us, if only we choose it.

We must never forget, we, the people, are the true heirs of the American experiment that began more than two centuries ago.
We, the people, have burning inside of each of us the flame of liberty that was lit here at Independence Hall. A flame that lit our way through abolition, the Civil War, suffrage, the Great Depression, world wars, civil rights. That sacred flame still burns. Now on our time as we build an America that is more prosperous, free, and just. That is the work of my presidency, a mission I believe in with my whole soul.

But first, we must be honest with each other and with ourselves.

Too much of what’s happening in our country today is not normal. Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans represent an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our Republic.

Now, I want to be very clear, very clear up front. Not every Republican, not even the majority of Republicans, are MAGA Republicans. Not every Republican embraces their extreme ideology. I know, because I’ve been able to work with these mainstream Republicans.

But there’s no question that the Republican Party today is dominated, driven and intimidated by Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans. And that is a threat to this country.

These are hard things, but I’m an American president, not a president of red America or blue America, but of all America. And I believe it’s my duty, my duty to level with you, to tell the truth no matter how difficult, no matter how painful.

And here, in my view, is what is true: MAGA Republicans do not respect the Constitution. They do not believe in the rule of law. They do not recognize the will of the people. They refuse to accept the results of a free election, and they’re working right now as I speak in state after state to give power to decide elections in America to partisans and cronies, empowering election deniers to undermine democracy itself.
MAGA forces are determined to take this country backwards, backwards to an America where there is no right to choose, no right to privacy, no right to contraception, no right to marry who you love. They promote authoritarian leaders, and they fanned the flames of political violence that are a threat to our personal rights, to the pursuit of justice, to the rule of law, to the very soul of this country.

They look at the mob that stormed the United States Capitol on Jan. 6, brutally attacking law enforcement, not as insurrectionists who placed a dagger at the throat of our democracy, but they look at them as patriots. And they see their MAGA failure to stop a peaceful transfer of power after the 2020 election as preparation for the 2022 and 2024 elections.

They tried everything last time to nullify the votes of 81 million people. This time, they’re determined to succeed in thwarting the will of the people. That’s why respected conservatives like Federal Circuit Court Judge Michael Luttig has called Trump and the extreme MAGA Republicans “a clear and present danger” to our democracy.

But while the threat to American democracy is real, I want to say as clearly as we can, we are not powerless in the face of these threats. We are not bystanders in this ongoing attack on democracy. There are far more Americans, far more Americans from every background and belief, who reject the extreme MAGA ideology than those that accept it. And folks, it’s within our power, it’s in our hands, yours and mine, to stop the assault on American democracy.

I believe America is at an inflection point, one of those moments that determine the shape of everything that’s to come after. And now, America must choose to move forward or to move backwards, to build a future or obsess about the past, to be a nation of hope and unity and optimism or a nation of fear, division and of darkness.

MAGA Republicans have made their choice. They embrace anger. They thrive on chaos. They live, not in the light of truth but in the shadow of lies. But together, together, we can choose a different path. We can choose a better path forward to the future, a future of possibility, a future to build a dream and hope, and we’re on that path moving ahead.

I know this nation. I know you, the American people. I know your courage, I know your hearts, and I know our history. This is a nation that honors our Constitution. We do not reject it. This is a nation that believes in the rule of law. We do not repudiate it. This is a nation that respects free and fair elections. We honor the will of the people. We do not deny it. And this is a nation that rejects violence as a political tool. We do not encourage violence. We are still an America that believes in honesty and decency and respect for others. Patriotism, liberty, justice for all, hope, possibilities — we are still at our core a democracy.
And yet, history tells us that blind loyalty to a single leader and a willingness to engage in political violence is fatal to democracy.
For a long time, we’ve told ourselves that American democracy is guaranteed, but it’s not. We have to defend it, protect it, stand up for it, each and every one of us. That’s why tonight, I’m asking our nation to come together, unite behind the single purpose of defending our democracy regardless of your ideology.

We’re all called by duty and conscience to confront extremists who put their own pursuit of power above all else. Democrats, independents, mainstream Republicans, we must be stronger, more determined and more committed to saving American democracy. And MAGA Republicans are destroying American democracy.

We, the people, will not let anyone or anything tear us apart. Today, there are dangers around us we cannot allow to prevail. We hear — you’ve heard it, more and more talk about violence as an acceptable political tool in this country. It’s not. It can never be an acceptable tool. So, I want to say this plain and simple: There is no place for political violence in America, period, none, ever.

You saw law enforcement brutally attacked on January the 6th. We’ve seen election officials, poll workers, many of them volunteers of both parties, subject to intimidation and death threats. And, can you believe it, F.B.I. agents just doing their job as directed, facing threats to their own lives from their own fellow citizens.

On top of that, there are public figures today, yesterday and the day before predicting and all but calling for mass violence and rioting in the streets. This is inflammatory. It’s dangerous. It’s against the rule of law. And we, the people, must say this is not who we are.

Ladies and gentlemen, we can’t be pro-insurrectionist and pro-American. They’re incompatible. We can’t allow violence to be normalized in this country. It’s wrong. We each have to reject political violence with all the moral clarity and conviction this nation can muster now.
We can’t let the integrity of our elections be undermined, for that is a path to chaos. Look, I know politics can be fierce and mean and nasty in America. I get it. I believe in the give and take of politics, in disagreement and debate and dissent. We’re a big complicated country, but democracy endures only if we, the people, respect the guardrails of the Republic. Only if, we the people accept the results of free and fair elections. Only if, we the people see politics, not as total war, but mediation of our differences. Democracy cannot survive on one side believes there are only two outcomes to an election: Either they win or they were cheated. And that’s where the MAGA Republicans are today.
They don’t understand what every patriotic American knows. You can’t love your country only when you win. It’s fundamental.

American democracy only works only if we choose to respect the rule of law and the institutions that were set up in this chamber behind me. Only if we respect our legitimate political differences.

I will not stand by and watch — I will not — the will of the American people be overturned by wild conspiracy theories and baseless evidence-free claims of fraud. I will not stand by and watch elections in this country stolen by people who simply refuse to accept that they lost. I will not stand by and watch the most fundamental freedom in this country, the freedom to vote and have your vote counted, and be taken from you and the American people.

Look, as your president, I will defend our democracy with every fiber of my being, and I’m asking every American to join me.

Throughout our history, America has often made the greatest progress coming out of some of our darkest moments like you’re hearing in that bullhorn. I believe we can and must do that again, and we are.

MAGA Republicans look at America and see carnage and darkness and despair. They spread fear and lies. Lies told for profit and power.

But I see a different America — an America with an unlimited future, an America that’s about to take off. I hope you see it as well. Just look around. I believe we could lift America from the depths of Covid, so we passed the largest economic recovery package since Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and today America’s economy is faster, stronger than any other advanced nation in the world. We have more to go. I believe we can build a better America, so we passed the biggest infrastructure investment since President Dwight D. Eisenhower, and we’ve now embarked on a decade of rebuilding the nation’s roads, bridges, highways, ports, water systems, high-speed internet, railroads.
I believe we can make America safer, so we passed the most significant gun safety law since President Clinton.

I believe we could go from being the highest cost of prescriptions to the world to making prescription drugs and health care more affordable, so we passed the most significant health care reform since President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act.

And I believed we could create a clean energy future and save the planet, so we passed the most important climate initiative ever, ever, ever.

The cynics and the critics tell us nothing can get done, but they’re wrong.

There is not a single thing America cannot do, not a single thing beyond our capacity if we do it together. It’s never easy. But we’re proving that America, no matter how long the road, progress does come.

Look, I know the last year, few years have been tough, but today Covid no longer controls our lives. More Americans are working than ever. Businesses are growing, our schools are open, millions of Americans have been lifted out of poverty. Millions of veterans once exposed to toxic burn pits will now get what they deserve for their families in compensation. American manufacturing has come alive across the heartland, and the future will be made in America, no matter what the white supremacists and the extremists say.

I made a bet on you, the American people, and that bet is paying off, proving that from darkness, the darkness of Charlottesville, of Covid, of gun violence, of insurrection, we can see the light. Light is now visible. Light that will guide us forward. Not only in words but in actions. Actions for you, for your children, for your grandchildren, for America.
Even in this moment with all the challenges we face, I give you my word as a Biden, I’ve never been more optimistic about America’s future. Not because of me, but because of who you are.

We’re going to end cancer as we know it, mark my words. We’re going to create millions of new jobs and a clean energy economy. We’re going to think big. We’re going to make the 21st century another American century because the world needs us to. That’s where we need to focus our energy. Not in the past, not on divisive culture wars, not on the politics of grievance, but on a future we can build together.

The MAGA Republicans believe that for them to succeed, everyone else has to fail. They believe America, not like what I believe about America. I believe America is big enough for all of us to succeed, and that is the nation we’re building, a nation where no one is left behind.

I ran for president because I believed we were in a battle of the soul of this nation. I still believe that to be true. I believe the soul is the breadth, the life and the essence of who we are. The soul is what makes us, us.

The soul of America is defined by the sacred proposition that all are created equal in the image of God, that all are entitled to be treated with decency, dignity and respect, that all deserve justice and a shot at lives of prosperity and consequence. And that democracy, democracy must be defended, for democracy makes all these things possible.

Folks, and it’s up to us. Democracy begins and will be preserved, and we the people’s habits of the heart — in our character, optimism that is tested, yet endures, courage that digs deep when we need it. Empathy that fuels democracy. The willingness to see each other not as enemies but as fellow Americans.

Look, our democracy isn’t perfect. It always has been. Notwithstanding those folks you hear on the other side there. They’re entitled to be outrageous. This is a democracy. But history and common sense — good manners is nothing they have ever suffered from — but history and common sense tell us that opportunity, liberty and justice for all are most likely to come to pass in a democracy. We have never fully realized the aspirations of our founding, but every generation has opened those doors a little bit wider to include more people who have been excluded before.
My fellow Americans, America is an idea; the most powerful idea in the history of the world, and it beats in the hearts of the people of this country. It beats in all our hearts. It unites America. It is the American creed.
The idea that America guarantees that everyone be treated with dignity. It gives hate no safe harbor. It installs in everyone the belief that no matter where you start in life, there’s nothing you can’t achieve. That’s who we are. That’s what we stand for. That’s what we believe.

And that’s precisely what we’re doing — opening doors, creating possibilities, focusing on the future — and we’re only just beginning.

Our task is to make our nation free and fair, just and strong, noble and whole, and this work is the work of democracy, the work of this generation. It is the work of our time for all time. We can’t afford to leave anyone on the sidelines. We need everyone to do their part, so speak up, speak out, get engaged, vote, vote, vote!

And if we do our duty, if we do our duty, in 2022 and beyond, then ages still to come will say we, all of us here, we kept the faith. We preserved democracy. We heeded our words. We heeded not our worst instincts but our better angels. We proved that for all its imperfections, America is still the beacon to the world, an ideal to be realized, a promise to be kept. There’s nothing more important. Nothing more sacred. Nothing more American. That’s our soul. That’s who we truly are. And that’s who we must always be.

I have no doubt, none, that this is who we will be and that we’ll come together as a nation that will secure our democracy. That for the next 200 years we’ll have what we had the past 200 years, the greatest nation on the face of the earth. We just need to remember who we are. We are the United States of America, the United States of America. And may God protect our nation, and may God protect all those who stand watch over our democracy.

God bless you all. Democracy. Thank you.
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