We live in extremely challenging times. A great many of us are overwhelmed by what’s taking place in our country and in the world. Yet, as dark as it may seem, some encouraging signs of positive change are on the horizon.
The Ukrainian people in the face of a massive attack on their country are showing amazing courage and fortitude. An inspiration to all of us. “Ukrainian forces (have) continued to halt significant Russian battlefield gains,” according to recent reports. At the same time, Russian protests against the war are steadily intensifying. More than 5,000 anti-war demonstrators were arrested in 69 Russian cities last Sunday alone. Western nations have united to impose crippling sanctions against Russia in an effort to pressure Putin to end the war. And military expert, retired Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman even predicted that “the Russian invasion into Ukraine marked the ‘beginning of the end’ for Russian President Vladimir Putin as casualties from the war grow.”
On the home front, COVID cases are declining significantly. Almost the entire country is open for business. The U.S. economy added a record 6.4 million new jobs in 2021. And Congress finally passed a $1.5 trillion bipartisan budget, including support for Ukraine and climate protection.
One of the most surprising signs of progress is in the redistricting battles occurring across the country. Republican gerrymandering was supposed to give the GOP a distinct, unfair advantage in November’s Congressional elections. But Democrats are winning redistricting court cases in key battleground states like Pennsylvania and North Carolina. According to CNN, “they now have a chance to come out better than expected, and perhaps even benefit from the new maps overall.” With President Biden’s poll numbers finally rising, the Democrats just might have a chance of holding onto their majority in Congress next fall.
Finally, slowly but surely, the January 6th insurrectionists are being brought to justice. Earlier this month, a federal jury convicted Guy Wesley Reffitt on the very serious charge of obstructing Congress’s certification of the 2020 presidential election. At the same time, the Justice Department announced the indictment of the former Proud Boys leader, Enrique Tarrio, on charges of conspiring with several of his top lieutenants to plan and launch the assault on the Capitol.
Just this week Attorney General Merrick Garland stressed that “almost every U.S. attorney’s office in the country is working on this matter…People are working every day, 24/7, and are fully aware of how important this is. This had to do with the interference with the peaceful transfer of power from one administration to another. And it doesn’t get more important than that.
Meanwhile, the House Select committee investigating the insurrection, recently said in a court filing that it had gathered sufficient evidence to conclude that former President Trump and some of his allies might have conspired to commit fraud and obstruction by misleading Americans about the outcome of the 2020 election and attempting to overturn the result.
We are moving forward. Truly positive change is on the horizon.
Bruce Berlin, J.D.
A retired, public sector ethics attorney, Berlin is the author of Breaking Big Money’s Grip on America (See breakingbigmoneysgrip.com.), the founder of New Mexicans for Money Out of Politics, a former U.S. Institute of Peace fellow, and the founder and former executive director of The Trinity Forum for International Security and Conflict Resolution. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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