A Citizen's Appeal, or Op-Ed, for the post-Obama era.
"No one can make you do anything." That's what my mom would say when I'd try to weasel out of something dumb I did.
"Reggie made me do it," I'd say.
"No he didn't; you made you do it."
What you do is still what you do.
The new ... head of state, by both words and actions, has already endangered national security and individuals' lives. But every leader needs followers. Without obedience, a leader's power is gone.
If the President gives an order that seems unconstitutional, illegal, or harmful, will you follow it? You have a choice. Will you follow your party or your conscience?
Disobeying a President is treasonous. Or is it? What if the President is acting against the interest of the people? Whom do you serve? Everyone in the White House, Congress, and every governmental -- and non-governmental -- organization in the world wrestles with these questions at some point.
Now is a good time to decide what you'll let pass, and when you will take a stand. We've already seen questionable behavior; soon there may be questionable orders. Democrats will resist, but will be portrayed as partisan. Members of both parties have a responsibility. Republican push-back will take more courage, but it must be done if you put nation first. What do you have to gain by siding with a fool who may embarrass -- if not shame, or ruin -- the country? Are you strong enough to do the right thing for the long run, while short-sighted hacks rail you?
History has its eyes on you; Republican resistors will be heroes.
Another thing my mom would say: "If your friends jumped off a bridge, would you jump off too?" No one can make you jump. They can push you, but only you can jump. As with all choices, it's on you. Only you.