Trump is running for president – but the train wreck that we know seems to be out of steam…

Not even Trump seems to believe in his own victory in the upcoming presidential election

It was expected – in my case, feared. But there was not fanfare, escalators, white dress suits, and roaring shouts of jubilation, like we saw it last time. Even Trump was a toned-down version of himself when he from his Mar-a-Lago golf resort announced his candidacy for the next US presidential election.

And so, the circus begins. We are still waiting for the result to find out if it will be the Democrats or the Republicans who will have the majority in the House of Representatives, but the presidential election has apparently started, too, all though the election is not until two years from now.

A while back, we talked to the kids about our future here in the US. We told them that if the Americans elect Trump again, then our time in the USA is over – we simply cannot go through the drama and the high blood pressure again. Maybe I will be moving, but I doubt it.

Perhaps Trump’s relatively calm behavior was strategic, perhaps he meant to appear as dialed down as possible as a reaction to his shrill MAGA candidates that were massively rejected by voters. Maybe that’s why he didn´t spew his hatred and false accusations at us. Maybe he’s depressed that his candidates in the US midterm elections were rejected. Maybe deep down he doesn’t want to announce his candidacy but does it hoping the multiple lawsuits, facing him for his financial blunders, will disappear.

When Trump announced his candidacy, he followed his script, which is unusual for him. He spoke in a low and slow tone and read his speech from cover to cover. It was a bizarre experience, since we are used to seeing his wild gestures, angry outbursts and tirades of nonsense blabber.

One thing, however, was as it usually is – his falsehoods and his conspiracy theories – about the mid-term election results, oil prices, and about the environment.

The news ankers were puzzled. Who is the Donald Trump we saw on our screens tonight? Why did he appear so different?

How will the Republican leadership respond? During the last week, several prominent members of the party have aired thoughts that it is time for a new direction for the party, a direction away from Trump and his political followers. This sentiment echoes the voters in the midterm elections.

Tonight, I am looking forward. I am exhilarated about the midterm elections – Americans showed the world they value their democracy and that what they want are politicians who work together and implement legislation for the benefit of the people.

So, I look forward to the future. Because with the Trump I saw tonight and the election results last week – I don’t think I’ll have to start packing any moving boxes. Maybe we don’t need to fear that Americans will re-elect Trump. But you never know – you should never underestimate neither Donald Trump nor the American people.

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Så kører Trump-toget igen – men slet ikke med samme damp som sidst…

Ikke engang Trump ser ud til at tro på sin egen sejr ved det kommende præsidentvalg

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Midterm election: Thank you to the women who voted for democracy and women´s rights

Shocking developments in the votes in the US midterm elections. American women have had enough!

“What are you most worried about? – inflation?” I asked my American friend on the phone last night.

»I don’t give a shit about inflation, if they take away my God damn rights as a human being!,« she replied, finishing her sentence by saying that she had done her part by voting, but that her mental health could not handle watching the midterm election results on live tv.

My friend is not the only one who has had enough. One state after another proved that last night. The news anchors watching the numbers come in couldn´t believe their eyes.

Traditionally, the party that has a president in the White House loses seats in Congress in the midterm elections. In addition, Biden has lower voter approval than many of his Democratic presidential predecessors. All the odds were against the Democratic Party – yet the votes show a clear trend: Americans, especially American women, do not want crazy Trump supporters representing them, they do not want to be deprived of democratic rights, and they do not want the right to choose over their own bodies taken away. Do never underestimate the power of women.

“Maybe America’s future isn’t as bleak, as I feared?

But the Republican party, that strategically and in historically large numbers put African-Americans and women on the ballot, to bring voters to think that the party does not exclusively consists of white men, did – underestimate women in America.

Also, Republicans thought they had a winning hand in Donald Trump, who has been touring and spewing his hate speech in important swing states. It turns out, though, voters don’t want more insane, boastful Trumpers in Congress – they want sensible politicians, they want cooperation – and they want democracy. I wonder if Trump will run for president after this?

Perhaps the Americans have also had enough of intimidation and violence. If there is one thing one should never do, it is telling an American what to do. Americans value their individual rights, and gun carrying, militia-clad men at the polls and violence against elected politicians’ family members may have proven too much for those who normally do not vote during the midterm elections.

It will take some time before we have a final election result. And during that period, conspiracy theories will start to simmer because Republicans will repeatedly cry out their never ending nonsense about voter fraud. Each state has carefully planned how to deal with a situation of potential riots in the streets.

Yesterday, I asked my 85-year-old neighbor Pat what she thought about the midterm elections. Whether she was nervous, even worried about democracy? “I have a different perspective, I’ve seen and experienced a lot, I’m not nervous,” she said.

And sweet Pat seems to be right. Maybe America’s future isn’t as bleak as I feared?

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Midtvejsvalg i USA: Tak til kvinderne, der stemte for demokrati og for retten til abort

Chokerende udvikling i stemmerne ved det amerikanske midtvejsvalg. Måske har mange amerikanere alligevel fået nok?

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I wish the US was as civilized as Denmark, when it comes to respecting the democratic process

Democracy is difficult. The Danish election two days ago shows us that the US could learn from Denmark. Meanwhile we are waiting for the American mid-term elections.

There they were, all eleven heads of the Danish political parties, representing the spectrum in Danish politics. Standing shoulder to shoulder, the very night of the parliamentary election. Traditionally, on election night, after all votes have been tallied, all party leaders participate in a joint session on the Danish public service tv channel DR to answer questions from the media. The atmosphere was civil, no one accusing anyone of cheating. I was completely stunned and quite moved. I must have forgotten how a well-functioning democratic process works.

My daughter and I were watching the live broadcast from Seattle. I explained the Danish political system, which she was somewhat confused about. Denmark has a multi-party system and eleven parties are a lot, even for a Dane, but not least for her, being used to the election being between the Democrats and the Republicans.

So, I explained, which is not as easy as one might think, because the Danish parties are close in their set of values and often overlap each other in their positions on individual topics.

“The red parties in Denmark are on the side of the blue bloc in the USA. But even the most conservative parties in Denmark, which is represented by a blue color, have some areas that are more socialist than the blue parties here in the US. The blue parties in Denmark are often more ´red´ than the blue party color of the American Democratic Party.”

My daughter asked questions about ideology and what it takes to get a mandate. “It’s a very complicated system,” she said, until it dawned on her that every vote cast counts—unlike presidential elections here.

When I heard the head of The Green Left (SF), Pia Olsen Dyhr, say that despite the differences in opinions, the representatives from other parties in Parliament (Folketing) are colleagues she likes and respects, I almost wanted to move back to my beautiful, democracy-loving, safe country of origin, Denmark.

“This is too exciting! I am amazed how quickly they count the votes,’ she said, while we watched the DR hosts try to fill out airtime while waiting for the final votes.

“Far fewer people live in Denmark. And the Danes are good at creating efficient systems and believing in the democratic process,” I replied.

The atmosphere I felt when I watched politicians from The Red/Green Alliance (Enhedslisten) bike ride through the streets of Copenhagen, the warmth I felt, when the cameras panned through various rooms in Parliament covered in confetti, showing Danish flags being waved, and nervous, excited looks glued to the latest election numbers on tv screens. I saw smiles, hugs, and groups of people spontaneously breaking out in song. That atmosphere, the USA could learn from.

Democracy is something to be celebrated. When I heard the head of The Green Left (SF) Pia Olsen Dyhr, say that despite the differences in opinions, the representatives from other parties in Parliament (Folketing) are colleagues she likes and respects, I almost wanted to move back to my beautiful, democracy-loving, safe country of origin, Denmark, where the rhetoric, even during an election campaign, is at a level where the politicians do not fear for their lives.

In that context, the political mood in America is starkly different. Many politicians talk to each other in such a disrespectful way you hardly want your kids to hear it. Many refuse to meet each other for debates. On the political arena and among the population, the atmosphere is so toxic that some fear a civil war.

Last week, a man broke into Speaker of the United States House of Representatives house, Nancy Pelosi. Pelosi was not at home. But her 82-year-old husband ended up with a fractured skull and injuries to his body. He is still recovering in the ER. The perpetrator has since stated that he wanted to smash Nancy Pelosi’s kneecaps so that other politicians would see what was in store for them.

More than 70 per cent of Republicans in the United States believe that the last presidential election was “stolen” from them – a falsehood that has been refuted again and again by various recounts and by countless court verdicts.

In the US, we don’t get the election results as quickly as other countries do. We must wait and wait and wait because one party in particular, the Republican, want the ballots recounted over and over and because they bring the decision to the courts and drag out the results by appealing even when the margin is significant. By law, they have the right to do so. But when the tally is clear, one must ask whether there is a strategy behind what the republicans are doing.

By dragging out the final election results, citizens lose interest and trust in the system. And that is most likely exactly what the republicans want. In its extreme consequence, that is an eerie thought: if you can destroy faith in democracy and make people believe their vote holds no power, that democracy is too difficult, what then is the alternative? – indifference and acceptance of a totalitarian system brought in through the backdoor.

Democracy is hard. But that does not mean that citizens should turn away from voting and participating – because if we do, we can wave goodbye to the democracy America prides itself of on the global world stage. Maybe America should look to Denmark for showing the world how to respect democracy?

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Tænk, hvis USA var lige så civiliseret, når det kommer til at afholde valg

Demokrati er svært, og USA kunne lære meget af Danmark. Det viste det danske valg, mens vi venter på det amerikanske midtvejsvalg.

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The US has changed my values: School shootings have made me favor the death penalty

The victims of mass shootings in the United States are more than those we bury. I do not want to understand the perpetrators of mass shootings. Others must do that. I have no room in my heart to explain and understand why they are also victims.

How do you describe the deepest grief of parents who have lost a child in a school shooting and are now sitting in a courtroom listening to their child’s name and cause of death read out loud while a 22-year-old killer and the rest of the world look on? The other day, CNN broadcast live from a courtroom in Florida, where the perpetrator of the Parkland shooting was to receive his sentencing. At 19, he killed 17 people at a high school with an automatic riffle.

For several days, I have been thinking about how to describe the grief. No words can seem to be sufficient. No matter how we all feel, nothing compares to the feelings of those who loose loved ones.

Grief is hard as flint and soft as a heart. It is expressed in the chain bearing a son’s name in gracefully curved letters above a silver heart around a mother’s neck, it is seen in the upturned red-rimmed eyes fastened to the ceiling of the courtroom, it is evident in the tapping of a manicured index fingernail on a mother’s upper arm, it is present in the gaze set on infinity as the camera zooms in as the name of a son or daughter is read aloud. We watch it, grief, in the involuntary muscle movements around a mouth in an attempt to control emotions in a public space where the world is watching.

In the courtroom, parents, siblings and grandparents were seated across from the defendant, who was awaiting his sentencing. Wiping away tears, I had to look away. To me, the panning seemed too invasive.

But I was also affected because these parents are living my worst nightmare.

For me, it began with the mass shooting at a school for 0.-5. graders, Sandy Hook in 2012, where a 20-year-old man shot 20 children aged six to seven and six adults. At that time, we had been living in the US for two years and were still in that phase where most things were new and exciting.

My children were two and five years old, the same age as many children at the Sandy Hook school. That day, scales fell from my eyes, and I woke up abruptly to the reality that has since been a part of every day life here in the United States. I started telling my kids what to do if they were in the theater with the school and something bad happened; I talked to them about what to do at the cinema, at school – wherever they were if a bad guy did something.

Every month, all children here in the United States have some sort of exercise to prepare them for possible disasters such as “active shooter drills”, bears, earthquakes, lockdown, lockout etc. That´s just part of their everyday school life. My children learn at which angles to hide in their classroom, so that they are not visible from the hallway if there is a gunman at school; they learn to run from school to the nearest neighbor if they are in a situation where they can; they learn to hide in classes while continuing their school work if there is a lockout.

Since the day small children were murdered at Sandy Hook, according to Time, almost 1,000 shootings have taken place at schools and universities in the United States. More than 300,000 children and youth have experienced gun violence in American schools. It is a reality they live with. It is a reality we as parents live with.

I do not want to understand the perpetrators of mass shootings. Others must do that. I have no room in my heart to explain and understand why they are also victims.

My values have shifted since I lived in Denmark. Of course, I was not in favor of the death penalty, what a barbaric thought, what a resigned attitude to the possibility of rehabilitation of fellow human beings! But the USA is not Denmark. Here, a young person can waltz into the nearest gun or sporting goods store and acquire an automatic weapon designed for use in war zones and drive straight to the nearest elementary school, where six and seven-year-old students sit and draw, and gun them down.

So the US has changed my values. I know, research shows that long prison sentences do not equate rehabilitation. But for my faith in the judicial system and in the system overall, I want the death penalty when there is absolutely no doubt about who the perpetrator is and no question of his or her guilt in a heinous and cruel act of criminality such as a school shooting.

The man who murdered 17 people in cold blood at a high school, including the three adults who heroically ran toward the assailant and tried to help the high school students escape, will spend the rest of his life in prison. I would rather see him get electrocuted than a life of more prison violence against officers, love letters from women all over the world, as well as books and films written about his life.

My daughter just started high school. The other day she showed me around her school. “Here is the band room, here we have chemistry, over here algebra.” She is a happy teenager, full of life and a desire for learning. While my eyes darted about, I followed her from classroom to classroom. “How exciting, honey!,” I managed to say before the next sentence flew out of my mouth: “Do you know where the exits are? Do you know how to get out as quickly as possible?’

Without a flinch, she answered in the affirmative. Because we are all victims in this country, and we live with that as best we can.


USA har ændret mine værdier: Skyderierne har gjort, at jeg går ind for dødsstraf

Ofrene for masseskyderier i USA er flere end dem, vi begraver. Jeg forholder mig ikke til gerningsmændene. Det må andre gøre. Der er ikke plads i mit hjerte til at forklare og forstå, hvorfor de også er ofre.

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Biden says the pandemic is over. Is it?

In the US, 400 people still die from Covid every day.

This week, both my kids finally took off their masks at school. Every single day since they returned to school after 540 days of online schooling, they have attended PE, sat in their classrooms, had recess – with masks on.

Since masks have been part of a highly controversial, heated debate and are a symbol of where you stand politically, our advice to the kids has been to do what made them feel comfortable – wearing a mask became so much more than just an expression of wanting to protect one’s classmates.

I have previously been almost a religious fanatic when it came to wearing a mask in public. Now I shop, go to parent meetings, and have a social life again – without wearing a face mask.

Joe Biden was asked by a CBS journalist on “60 Minutes” whether the pandemic was over in the United States. He was in Detroit attending North America’s largest auto show. Biden’s response? “We still have problems with covid … but the pandemic is over,” he said. But that is simply not true. The United States is still under a “public health emergency,” which the country has been under since January 2020.

The timing couldn’t be worse as health officials are trying to convince the American population to take the latest Covid booster shot that specifically targets the Omicron variant. At the same time, the White House is trying to get Congress to approve 22 billion dollars for Covid prevention.

There is light at the end of the tunnel, the WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, last week. But in the same statement, he encouraged nations of the world to still be vigilant.

More than six and a half million people have died from Covid, more than one million this year alone, including my own uncle in Copenhagen in July. In the US, 400 people die from Covid every single day, and 4,300 are hospitalized.

Biden has a a bad habit of saying things that the White House staff then has to walk back. It is, at best, an unfortunate statement from the American president, because such announcements can complicate the fight against Covid. It makes me nervous to think about the consequences of Biden’s statements. Will fewer people go and get their Omicron booster shots? I wouldn´t be surprised if some people think: Why should I get the vaccine if the pandemic is over?

And if the boss of all declares the pandemic over, why would the Republican politicians needed to get a majority want to vote in alliance with their Democratic colleagues in Congress to allocate more tax dollars aimed to deal with Covid in the form of vaccinations, testing and research? There is not much historic data about Covid, yet, but we do know one thing now – the numbers of positive cases increase when people’s social lives move indoors. Officials in the healthcare sector report that there are not enough economic funds allocated to handle the raise the expected positive Covid cases in the autumn.

A pandemic does not go from 100 to 0 – I wish that was the case, because that would make it so much easier to communicate a message and for the population to understand. Meanwhile, each individual citizen interprets the situation according to his or her own best judgment.

Yesterday I attended yet another parent meeting, they seem to be never ending these weeks. For the first time since the outbreak of the pandemic, everything has moved from Zoom meetings to be held in person. About half of the parents wore masks, I did not.

I have previously been almost a religious fanatic when it came to wearing a mask in public. Now I shop, attend parent meetings, and have a social life again – without wearing a face mask. The pandemic is not over – it is just under control. But continuous control requires that we keep taking it seriously while living our lives without having to endure too many restrictions.

Maybe that’s what Biden was trying to say?

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Coronapandemien er slut, siger Biden – men er den det?

I USA dør der stadig 400 af covid om dagen.

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The Danish press is looking into Søren Pape´s, the leader of the Danish Conservative People´s Party, statements and actions – all you have to do is to turn to America to see how bad things can go

Looking into Søren Pape´s behavior is relevant – he might be the next Danish Prime Minister

I am not comparing Søren Pape to Donald Trump one to one; their behavior cannot be compared and Pape´s potential misconduct does not match that of Donald Trump´s. But, the principle of the press investigating the worthiness and suitability of the person who has ambitions to lead the country is the same – and that process is important.

I live in the United States and every day the news bring stories revealing Trump’s abuse of power while he was president – and reveal stories about what he has been willing to do for his dictatorial ambitions. Furthermore, Trump put the country’s security and the citizens´ lives at risk after he was out of office.

And that is the part of the story about the leader of the Danish Conservative People´s Party Søren Pape that is interesting. The public needs to know if he has violated any laws or committed actions within the country´s borders and internationally inconsistent with how one behaves as a publicly elected person. If it turns out he has, it needs to be addressed and dealt with – immediately. If we don´t, all one has to do is look to America to see how bad things can go. The Danish population needs to know who they are potentially voting to be the next leader of Denmark before an election.

“when the press smells blood, you have to be able to provide more than a muffled answer to survive in the highest circles of political life – as the saying goes: when you are a public figure, the press will attend both the wedding and the divorce.

It’s a good thing the press is not intimidated but do the research which leads to providing the public with the information they find. Some findings are irrelevant in relation to Pape’s dreams of becoming the next Danish Prime Minister, others may reveal serious incidents. That’s the process. It’s not pretty, but it’s necessary.

It is crucial that the population has a right to know what kind of candidate they are potentially voting into the Prime Minister’s Office – especially if illegal activities have damaged Denmark’s reputation and put the country´s security at risk.

That Pape is so ill-prepared and handles the shitstorm he’s in so completely unmannerly is another matter. He clearly needs his spin doctor to help him prepare his public responses better. But when spin and emotionally distress intertwine, it is clearly difficult for him to utter anything meaningful to the public. A public person like Pape should know that once the press smells blood, you have to be able to give more than a muffled answer to survive in the highest circles of political life – as the saying goes: the press will attend both the wedding and the divorce.

As we have seen countless times with Trump here in the United States, it creates a ground for conspiracy theories and allows the press to gain the upper hand and run the stories in the direction they want when a politician does not want to answer strait to questions from the press.

Søren Pape’s inability to handle the situation is shameful, because his unwillingness to elaborate and answer questions creates uncertainty in relation to his competences as Denmark’s future leader. Hopefully, time will show that he didn´t compromise Denmark’s interests. Time will tell, the press turn every stone and unearth whatever lies below the surface – for the benefit of Denmark and democracy.

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Det er ikke kønt, men det er nødvendigt at gå Pape efter i sømmene – se bare på USA, hvor galt det kan gå

Det er relevant, hvad Søren Pape har foretaget sig – han kan stå på tærsklen til at få overdraget nøglerne til Statsministeriet.

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Does Joe Biden fear an American civil war?

Do you want to keep democracy?, Joe Biden asked in his address to the nation.

Sleepy Joe has finally woken up, and that´s in a way that felt like a slap in the face to me and Americans. In his address to the nation yesterday, he said: “We have to be honest. There is too much in the United States that, because of Donald Trump, threatens the foundations of our democracy.”

If that doesn´t snap you out of your haze, I don´t know what will. I myself, reacted by sitting up straight on my couch. And then I got nervous. The speech was, in all its simplicity, about how we must ensure that democracy survives under the pressure of the political violence of extreme national MAGA groupings.

Our time is not the first where the United States has been divided. Historically, when things have been so bad that an American president has addressed the nation, division within the population has led to war and a national identity crisis.

I am obviously not the only one who occasionally loose sleep over the situation in America. Today, the country’s president found it necessary to say that if we are not careful, we risk that our children will not grow up in a democracy with the same freedoms as we have today. “Equality and democracy are under attack. Don’t take our democracy for granted, stand up for it, fight for it,” Joe Biden said.

“As Biden talked about the United States being at a crossroads, I get more nervous. This was not just another political speech from a political leader. This was serious.

It is very rare that Biden mentions Trump by name. But today, he did just that several times. Without sugarcoating his words, he warned that Trump and his MAGA supporters are actively using violence and threats as a tool and that they are willing to use any means to get the results they want. But “you can’t only love the United States when you win,” Biden shouted. “Blind loyalty to one person is fatal for a democracy.”

Several times since the attempted coup on January 6 last year, I have come across ordinary Americans who have expressed a fear that the political mood and Trump’s influence are now so inflamed that it could lead to a civil war.

Biden argued that “that’s not how we are”.

But maybe that is the way Americans are? Maybe they’ve always been that way? Maybe we just haven’t seen it until now, because the hatred has been directed against populations abroad or against African Americans within the country’s borders – and not against ordinary white Americans, whose only “flaws” in the eyes of Trump and his supporters are, that they are democrats?

Biden and Trump are the personification of the choice America faces. Democracy versus autocracy, a dynamic society versus conservative stagnation, inclusion versus exclusion, international orientation versus isolationism.

Joe Biden is a seasoned politician to the core. He believes in the Constitution, the democratic process and has been part of the game in Congress and the White House for decades. He is known for seeking consensus across political party lines, inviting everyone to negotiations and believing in the process. Trump, on the other hand, is a completely different beast with no political experience and with an attitude that he wants things his way – at any cost and by any means. The diplomat against the tyrant, the negotiator against the aggressor.

As Biden talked about the United States being at a crossroads, I got more nervous. This was not just another political speech from a political leader. This was serious. Quiet, whispering Joe stood there under the whir of historic wings and said that we must fight for what we believe in—and that if we don’t, we’ll lose our democracy.

“We are not powerless, we must not stand by. We stand for honesty, decency, democracy,’ he said rather dictatingly. He also said that together we can do anything. Still, I had a knot in my stomach, thinking about how we are going to stop national extremists from intimidating and threatening their way into an agenda and a society far from what I associate with a free democracy, and how democracy might feel after the next election.

Frygter Joe Biden en amerikansk borgerkrig?

Skal vi have demokratiske rettigheder eller ufrihed? spurgte Joe Biden i sin tale til nationen.

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Udmattelsens juridiske maraton er Trumps trumf

Amerikanske nyhedsmedier håber, Trump bliver stillet til regnskab – men en snu rotte som ham finder altid smuthuller.

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A judicial marathon of exhaustion is Trump’s strategy card

American news outlets like CNN, MSNBC, BBC and others sound like they think Trump will be held accountable this time – but a cunning rat like him always finds loopholes.

He does it again and again: puts other people’s lives in danger, never his own.

Most people are probably aware that the FBI has removed multiple boxes of top secret documents from Trump’s private golf resort, Maralago. Documents Trump took with him as he hurriedly flew away in a helicopter in the early hours of the same Washington DC morning Joe Biden was sworn in as the next President of the United States.

The documents Trump took, were piled up in closets, in his bedroom, and wherever he could find available space – fully accessible to anyone with access to Trump’s quarters.

“He has always considered himself above the law. He will probably find a loophole. this time, too.

Under the Espionage Act and the Atomic Energy Act, it is illegal to hide or remove top secret documents related to national defense.

It requires a long and rigorous process to gain approval to access top secret documents. Before your approval, you undergo a series of security checks and interviews, as do your neighbors, friends and colleagues.

Once you are handling top secret documents, you can lose your job if you forget to lock your drawer with classified documents – even if it is located in a top secured building.

It is a matter of national security and of the safety of the people who serve the United States. It is crucial that top secret documents are handled with respect and according to strict protocol – anything else is a disgrace to those who put their lives on the line every day for their country.

Of course, it is not legal to remove top secret documents when you are no longer president. The documents belong to the state, not the president. Who knows how many agents’ lives Trump has put on the line in his childish and dangerous need for control and power?

And no, it is also not legal for a former president to change the status of documents with the stroke of a pen, as Trump claims he did.

When I watch the news on CNN and MSNBC, hear the news from the BBC and read the New York Times, I sense hope and excitement that the processes underway will hold Trump accountable for his countless acts of democracy destruction.

But I do not share the optimism. Trump is a seasoned rat who knows the legal game from his mafia-like business practices that have repeatedly brought him into conflict with the New York legal system throughout his life.

He has no respect for the law and no intention of obeying it. He has always considered himself to be above the law. He will probably find a loophole this time, too.

Forfattere i USA står op for ytringsfrihed

Hvad siger det om vestlige demokratier, at de ikke beskytter deres borgeres ytringsfrihed?

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Writers in the US are standing up for free speech

What does it say about Western democracies if they do not protect their citizens’ freedom of expression?

This Friday prominent American writers like Paul Auster and his wife Siri Hustvedt gathered on the stairs in front of The New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue under the slogan “Stand with Salman: Defend the Freedom to Write.” (“In solidarity with Salman Rushdie: Defend the right to write freely.”)

A week ago, Salman Rushdie was stabbed during a literary event north of New York City when a man jumped on stage and stabbed him several times with a knife. Ironically, Rushdie was about to talk about how the United States is a safe heaven for writers who cannot stay safely in their own countries.

For more than thirty years, Salman Rushdie has lived a life with security guards 24/7 – simply because he did what writers do – used his creativity in a literary work. In one such experiment he played with the idea that the holy book of the Muslim faith, the Koran, was not divinely inspired but rather the result of a whispers from Satan. For that work, The Satanic Verses, he garnered a fatwa from Iran’s top Islamic leader that encouraged any Muslim to murder Rushdie. In addition, a bounty of 3 million dollars was put on his head.

For more than thirty years, Rushdie has lived with the knowledge that radicalized Muslims all over the world had a desire to kill him or would rejoice if others did. Rushdie moved from Europe to the United States, where he, for more than twenty years, was almost able to live a normal life. Until now.

Unfortunately, he is not the only one who has had to move from Europe because he criticized Islam. As Europe becomes more Islamized, several people with inside knowledge of Islam have spoken out and problematized various cultural and value attitudes that are not compatible with Western, free democracies. For their outspokenness, they have received death threats. Several have even paid the ultimate price. In several cases, the European governments have not wanted to spend the financial means needed to protect people who spoke against Islam. For example , Ayaan Hirshi Ali, who is originally from Somalia and became a politician and critic of Islam in the Netherlands, also had to move to the United States because her Dutch homeland could not guarantee her safety.

When an author, journalist, comedian or writer is attacked for what he or she has as a profession, namely his words, what does he have left?

“An attack on a writer, cartoonist, comedian, politician, or public figure because of his or her statements and writing is an attack on each and every one of us who believe in democratic values.

Salman Rushdie has never compromised on his beliefs, but has again and again and again pleaded for the right to express himself freely. He has done this with intellectual depth and quirky humor. Despite living under a constant threat, he has helped other writers and intellectuals who were in vulnerable positions because they spoke out against authoritarian regimes or extreme religious groups. Most recently, he has joined a network that helps Ukrainian writers.

It shouldn’t be necessary to say. But these days, writers and other creative souls cannot freely use their creativity and write without fear. All over the world there is a keen sense of awareness that when you speak out or write critically about totalitarian regimes and Islam, there might be a price of violence to pay.

Our rights and freedoms here in the West are more fragile than we dare to admit. Because if we admit that premise, then we also admit that our societal model and form of government have failed. If we can only feel safe within the borders of our own countries, when we shut down criticism, turn a blind eye, and refuse to speak out on specific subjects, and self-censor ourselves, then the rights we think we have are a hollow illusion.

We are faced with a choice: we can remain silent in fear. Or we can do as the writers who, without face coverings and with their names clearly stated today on the steps in the heart of New York to the library that contains thousands of books – all the result of a creative, free process, refuse to let violence destroy the principles we believe in.

An attack on a writer, cartoonist, comedian, politician or public figure because of his or her statements and writing is an attack on each and every one of us who believe in democratic values in a society with individual liberties.

May the voices that dare to speak against regimes of violence, hatred and religion never remain silent when threatened! May we fight for them to be able to write and say what they wish without fear of reprisals. And may our western democratic states wake up soon, so that you don’t have to be brave to express yourself freely. #StandWithSalman

10-årig pige voldtaget, gravid og udskammet af amerikanske politikere

Nu ser vi konsekvenserne af abortlovgivningen i USA, og det er de svageste, der ofres på de selvgodes alter.

Læs hele bloggen her:

10-year-old girl raped, pregnant, and shamed by Republican politicians

We now we see the consequences of abortion laws in the United States. The most vulnerable are sacrificed on the altar of the self-righteous.

Not long ago, many states changed their abortion laws. It came after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade, a 50-year-old ruling that put a woman’s right to make health decisions over higher than the states’ desire to do the same.

In a short time after the Supreme Court ruling, the so-called trigger laws came into affect. These laws were to be activated in the event that the Supreme Court reversed its decision. Imagine how many things you can come up with to make it difficult for a woman to have an abortion when you have almost 50 years to be creative in making it as difficult and illegal as possible to have an abortion or help assist with one. One of the more popular moves has been to ban abortion after week six and not to make any exceptions for incest or rape. The misogyny is unfathomable.

These days, the media is covering a story about a ten-year-old girl from the state of Ohio. She was raped several times and then became pregnant. When the pregnancy was discovered in week six plus three days, the state’s six-week deadline for abortion had been exceeded. Therefore, the girl had to travel to the state of Indiana, where she had an abortion.

Imagine what it must be like for a ten-year-old girl to be exposed to the trauma of a rape. And then imagine that the country’s most famous politicians use your misfortune in a political game. And then imagine yet again how the case is now running it course in the media, where even President Joe Biden has weight in on it.

This is not exactly a dream scenario pro lifers want. So, they reacted in a rather predictable way – by accusing their political opponents and the media of fabricating the story. The caveat, however, is that a 27-year-old man has confessed and that samples have been taken that prove his heinous act.

But the case does not end here. Now, investigation after investigation is being launched. For example, the doctor who performed the abortion must be prosecuted, says the Indiana state Attorney General.

Meanwhile, a ten-year-old child has been both physically and mentally abused and forced to endure the most horrible thing imaginable. She will always carry her experiences with her. But even though her body is now safe, she is being abused in a political stunt by Republicans.

Shame on the self-righteous suburban moms, Republican politicians, and religious forces in this country! To be pro-life should mean fighting for a ten-year-old girl’s right to life.