One Word Sums It All Up

By Billy Webster


DefinitionThe feeling that a person or a thing is beneath consideration, worthless, or deserving scorn.

Let’s begin with Mr. Trump, who twice in the last few weeks has been cited for contempt of court in the New York criminal hush-money trial. There is a litany of things that might be said about this trial and the actions that Mr. Trump undertook to hide his lewd affair with the pornographic actress and former stripper, Stormy Daniels. All of that is bad enough. 

What should concern us most in this case, I think, is Trump’s consistent and disdainful disregard of the court, its officers and its authority. However, it should surprise no one that a man who condemns the primacy of elections and the Rule of Law should have the same attitude about the judicial system. 

Article III of the Constitution establishes the Judicial Branch of government which is to act as a check on the powers of both the President and the Congress. Trump’s actions as President led to two impeachment proceedings and his perversion of Congress has given rise to the ascendance of dangerously whackadoodle Members of Congress like Marjorie Taylor Green (MTG), Matt Gaetz, and our own Nancy Mace. Only the judicial branch stands between Mr. Trump and dictatorship. 

Trump and his minions have turned contempt into an art form. Green—along with a phalanx of her Republican colleagues—stands in the Well of the House during the State of the Union address and heckles a sitting US President; Matt Gaetz openly calls for chaos and dysfunction in the House and is doing everything in his power to see that his vision becomes reality; and MTG is in a class by herself as an instrument of hate and contempt of the institution she was elected to serve. 

Congressman Timmons’ Run-in With the TSA

What might all of the above have to do with our Congressman’s recent run-in with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) you might ask?

Contempt. It is the common emotion that Trump, Timmons and all of their Republican colleagues have for the institutions of government. Timmons voted to reject the results of the 2020 election, impugning the electoral process—without evidence—an animus that led directly to the Insurrection of January 6. The minute he becomes offended by a random security check by TSA officials trying to do their job, he reacts with contempt. What private citizen, when pulled aside for a random screening, has had the option to meet with the head of TSA to state their objection, as Timmons did? The rules don’t apply to Mr. Trump and they don’t seem to apply to Mr. Timmons. 

It has been said that what makes us all Americans is the “rule book:” our Constitution and the rules that bind us together and keep us safe from tyrannies of the majority AND the minority. Contempt of those rules, whether in a court room in New York or in the halls of the Greenville—Spartanburg airport weaken our democracy and undermine the Rule of Law. 

We deserve better. 

Elect Kathryn Harvey to the US Congress.

Billy Webster is an educator, entrepreneur, and civic leader. He has been appointed to various positions by two presidents – George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, serving in the Agency for International Development, The Department of Education, and the White House, among other postings. A resident of Spartanburg, Webster has served on numerous boards for organizations serving the Upstate.

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