Rayl’s Ramblings – Tony Rayl

God Bless the USA
I am seriously worried about the future of this country.
I really do not know the direction we are headed, but as of now it does not look promising.
It worries me every day, particularly since the current leader continues to encourage dangerous activities. It also worries me because so many still support him despite his obvious role in encouraging the invasion of the U.S. Capitol. (His words at the speech on January 6 make it plainly obvious. I cannot conceive how that could even be debated.)
He has fomented divisiveness even before the 2016 election, and never slowed down over the past four years. It finally came to horrific fruition on January 6.
He has been claiming for months that if he lost in November, it had to be because of voter fraud. That is a cynical strategy that benefits oneself after the election becomes a reality. All he has done since November 3, 2020 is spread baseless claims of widespread fraud, and help whip up more divisiveness.
In reality, Republicans did quite well in the 2020 election, except for the presidential race. So there was fraud, but then again there was not on the same ballot where Republicans won?
It is complete nonsense.
Republican leadership should have hunkered down beginning on November 4 to strategize how to win back the White House in 2024. It’s not like Biden will not be beatable. Instead most stood by, or even actively encouraged, the delusional claim of the election being stolen.
Even though it has never been proven, and thoroughly rejected by election officials (many Republicans), courts at all levels and even the Supreme Court (which, in case you forgot, features three Trump appointees, and a Republican majority).
Roger Chance must be turning over in his grave.
The late, great Yuma Pioneer editor, whose family owned and operated this publication for nearly 60 years, was a dedicated Republican, but I cannot imagine he would approve of what has transpired in our great country in recent years, particularly since last week.
I know I cannot.
While Roger was a strong Republican, and never shied away from taking shots at Democrats, many of his friends were Democrats. It seems it was not that long ago that Republicans and Democrats could disagree, but not be completely defined by their politics, realizing friendship and family came first, and all agreed they still lived in a great country.
One of those was Bob Stallings, another late, great Yuman. He was one of the publication-day “insert technicians” here at Pioneer Headquarters in the first years I worked here long ago. He was as much Democrat as Roger was Republican, and often would praise Franklin Roosevelt’s “New Deal” with helping save the country.
Roger and Bob would spend Wednesdays ripping each other’s political views, but it was always good-natured with no hard feelings — and quite ofter very humorous. It was kind of like in “Gran Torino” when Clint Eastwood’s character teaches “Choi” how to talk like a man by sharing insults with his friends at various businesses.
Maybe I am just romanticizing a not-too-distant past.
Whatever, I am still having a hard time processing all that has happened, particularly in the past week or so.
I know this community is full of Trump supporters, and even more true Republicans, who will hate this and probably accuse the Pioneer of being part of the Liberal Media. However, there is no way we can just let this go without condemning it. We encourage differing views on this page.
As of today, January 12, there are threats out there against not only politicians who dare oppose him, but also media members, according to the FBI. That is as chilling as it can get.
However, we cannot be bullied into just letting this go.
Look, I am not even a Democrat. There have been many Republican ideals I have supported through the years. However, are any of those ideals even still in place? It seems, at least on the surface, the GOP has become the Trump Party, trading in ideals for cult of personality. I know that is not true for many, but the party obviously has been overtaken by the Trump extremists.
It is time to take back the GOP. It is up to the Republicans themselves to have the courage to make it happen. Drop fealty to an obvious narcissist. It’s all about him, and if you get thrown under the bus in the process, he certainly does not care.
Just look at last Wednesday, Republicans were just as much in peril as Democrats. A pipe bomb was placed in front of the RNC. The vice-president, who has done all he can to protect the POTUS over the past four years, was targeted because he would not be a part of a coup attempt. Republican lawmakers have been verbally attacked in airports and on airplanes, even wishy-washy Lindsay Graham!
It is a scary place we are in right now. The country needs to move beyond that guy and somehow come together again as a nation.
Does this past week prove we are great again?

Rayl can be reached at [email protected].