At the recent G-20 meeting in Osaka, Japan, President Donald Trump was asked if he told Russia’s Vladimir Putin not to interfere in the 2020 election in the U.S. He laughed and playfully turned to Putin to ask him not to interfere in the next election. Both looked at each other and smiled broadly as though it was some kind of joke.

Witnessing this made me sick to my stomach. At that moment it became obvious to me that Putin and the Russians were probably the ones who put Trump in office and likely would do it again if given the chance.

Unfortunately, many Republicans defend Trump every step of the way. They know they can appeal to uninformed segments of the population with dog whistles and appeals to selfish interests. This knowledge seems to be all they need to perpetuate a hateful resistance to solutions that might actually make sense. Often they even deny the existence of problems that plague many in our society, including the coming climate crisis and a lack of affordable housing, living-wage jobs, and adequate health care.

Caring people need to get active very soon if they want to save our democracy and way of life.

Patricia Richard-Amato