Commentary: America needs a government without the drama or disaster

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At a time when the United States and other democracies need solidarity, the resulting civic turmoil and division are being fed by populism, say ...

Such leaders approach problems by blaming others, aiming to strengthen their support within a particular subgroup by fostering division.That type of leadership undermines trust, and makes it less likely that people will have sufficient confidence in authority and expertise to follow public-health guidelines. It also eschews and destroys any idea of shared sacrifice.

Law enforcement and fire personnel wait on the Enterprise Bridge to enter an area encroached by the Bear Fire, part of the North Lightning Complex fires, in Butte County, in Oroville, California on Sep 9, 2020. Johnson further argues that African-Americans and other minority communities have deep experience of solidarity. Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow, has similarly called for a “politics of deep solidarity rooted in love”.Solidarity is both golden and necessary. The US, along with Japan, China, Russia, and much of Europe, is struggling with a demographic imbalance, having too few young people to support a tsunami of retirees.

If America can make closing the racial equity gap its national mission, such that economic, educational, and social disparities simply track America’s demography rather than being disproportionately concentrated in black and brown communities, it will open the door to huge and lasting innovation.Throughout its history, American democracy has innovated to adjust to technological change, wars, pandemics, and other shocks.

As the US approaches the 250th anniversary of its founding, Americans need to embrace the country’s diversity as a source of strength and solidarity that will allow it to meet collective challenges at home and abroad.


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