Daniel Patrick Moynihan once said, “You are entitled to your opinion. But you are not entitled to your own facts.” These days, the president of the United States and his supporting minions all frequently traffic in their own opinions-made-facts. They flog alternative facts, observations, conclusions, turning outright lies into their own alternative reality, and market them to Trump’s “poorly educated” supporters (Trump’s own words!) What’s wrong with this picture? What are we to make of this? Why would Trump purposely lie? Or more to the point, purposefully lie?

There is, after all, still an objective reality in the cosmos — known or to be known. So, what we are left to figure out is: what are our official liars in the White House and in the greater Trump government really up to? Are they merely trying to deceive, or are they just bent on trying to establish an alternative reality that fits their own dark purposes; or, possibly they are mentally ill, as in pathological lying — habitual or compulsive lying — wherein Trump knows that he is lying, or he may even have come to actually believe he is telling the truth. But the fact remains, the lies are the facts of reality he has attempted to create.

I personally think Trump knows exactly what he is up to, for he is not a stupid man, although certainly he is a duplicitous and deceitful one. In all likelihood, there is a dark purpose to his habitual lying: a lie told often enough, without adequate challenges, becomes a reality of sorts — a so-called alternative fact. And Trump is going to need a lot of help from alternative reality, because some dark times are almost certainly coming up for him.

It is increasingly clear that an Independent Counsel will have to be appointed to investigate allegations of Trump’s connections to Vladimir Putin and the influence Russia played in the last election. Far too many people from all sides are now convinced that there is really something there to be uncovered, and that it’s serious stuff. It has become known that pressure was placed on an FBI official, as well as on the chairs of two Congressional Investigative Committees, to put out the word to the greater public that in fact there is no there there with respect to Russian influence. But we must not forget Hamlet: “...The lady doth protest too much, methinks...” Whyever does Trump keep trying to change the subject away from Russia, if in fact there is nothing there? We’ll find out sooner or later, and if by then Trump has largely destroyed the credibility of objective reality, through his alternative facts, and fake news, he may be able to lessen the blow on how the American public, and certainly his “poorly educated” (Trump’s own words) supporters, react to the inevitable revelations to come.…

I urge you to contact your Senators and Congresspeople to support the establishment of an Independent Counsel to investigate Russian influence in the last election. Such an investigation is critical to the well-being of our republic! 

J. Brian Smith, Camden