America In Electoral Labor Ward By Austin Isikhuemen

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Babies can be born at a Birth Centre or a Labour Ward. In advanced countries where this distinction came from, the former are free-standing midwife-led units without immediate obstetric, neonatal or anaesthetic healthcare facilities.  Join our Content Creation Academy

They therefore are good enough for deliveries without foreseen complications. The latter, in contradistinction, are mostly for women and babies at higher risks (obstetric or fetal) and therefore require more specialist care as a result.

The United States of America votes today, though early voting has gone on for weeks. Already, nearly 100 million have voted representing about two thirds of the expected total vote haul.

This election is sure going to score many firsts – the good, the bad and the ugly. An incumbent – Donald J. Trump – squares up against Obama’s Vice President – Joe Biden – in what may be the most hard-fought, record shattering, divisive and 3rd World-like antics loaded bitter campaign and underhand democracy-undermining tactics in a country that ought to be the democracy beacon across the world.

As an independent observer across the Atlantic pond living in a country with its own national birth pangs on the democratic journey, here’s my take on today’s election in America, their America whose Presidential system of democracy we copied in 1979 but have managed to make the copy look fake enough to be considered a counterfeit! But wait a minute, aren’t they the ones photocopying our crude model now?

The beauty of democracy is the ability of the led to choose their leaders regularly and change them if they so desire based on term limits as prescribed in their constitutions.

There are variants of what term limits are though – from the British one that is unclear or Museveni’s Uganda type that has been made elastic to suit the incumbent’s lifespan! The United States constitutional limit is a maximum of two four-year terms subject to a re-election after the first term.

That’s the battle the Donald is fighting to win and Biden is primed to stop. Today. Will Trump win again and then be in a position to take some lessons from Yoweri Museveni’s free consultancy service so as to run again in 2024? Or will Joe Biden stop him in his tracks today and let him go and stay Mask-less with Melania at Mar-a-Lago? To be or not to be? That, according to Ernest Okonkwo of blessed memory, is the question!

If I were a voter today, I would consider some of the issues below as I go to cast my ballot, which I wouldn’t miss for all the world because America’s values, future and world leadership are at stake. There are those who would argue here that I am just playing interloper because I am neither an American citizen nor a resident and have just been shouting ‘Edo no bi Lagos’ recently.

Well, I am not doing a video broadcast to the US as a Lagos Chieftain did to Edo people in September and Obama did to Nigerians in 2015! These are just musings in my bedroom and are neither likely to energize American voters nor cause constipation among those that hate my guts!

So, those who love Trump to death here can sheath their godly words or better still, write their own version of the epitaph of Trump’s Presidency. I do this too so that political leaders here at all levels should not think Trump’s style is the next to be adopted! Not everything from America is good anymore….

How do I advise people to vote for a man who just said he would fire Dr. Fauci, the one man in his government that is the lone voice of science and moderation and reasonableness in the pandemic war?

How can America that put a man on the moon to beat the nation of Yuri Gangarin who first went to space to the first position on lunar landing now turn against science and modern medicine? A man who is likely to declare victory before the ballots are even counted.

A man whose friends and supporter politicians secretly hedged their bets in the stock market with official fore knowledge of the approaching covid19 catastrophe but kept their constituents and supporters in the dark, even encouraged them to avoid needed precautions to their own peril!

Is it imaginable that unilateral diplomacy – oxymoron in terms really – would be deployed by a country whose very essence is the potpourri of internal diversity and unassailable global leadership wrought through multi-lateralism over the years?

Pray, who led the founding of the United Nations after World War II and provided the real estate for it’s headquarters? I thought the United States was the global power that resisted dictators and was committed to the dismantling of dictatorial regimes worldwide?

Why cozy up to the world’s worst dictators? President Reagan, on June 12, 1987, told USSR’s Gobachev – the initiator and apostle of Glasnost and Perestroka- “Tear down this wall!” and the Soviets did tear down the Berlin wall and Germany reunited. Now America is the advocate and solicitor for wall erection instead of bridge-building.

Unless there is a Biden success, all countries may have to budget for border walls in 2021.

Those who mistake a man holding the bible for a photo-op for evidence of Christianity are entitled to their opinions, of course! But I would humbly argue that a Christian goes to worship in church(s), doesn’t/shouldn’t boast of grabbing women by the pu..y, shouldn’t enact policies that separate 500 Latino children from their parents forever without the possibility of their being able to see or hear or even know themselves. Or does Christianity fit the racist exclusion of blacks from employment in your business or tenancy in your housing condominiums for the only reason that they are black?

Wasn’t it a man of colour that helped Jesus the Christ to carry his cross when he was too weak physically to continue the ordeal? Is Trump aware of this? Or of the preachment of Jesus that “whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers, that you do unto me”?

If he is aware then why does he want to remove people’s healthcare protections by going to court to disband the Affordable Care Act which provides cover for people with pre-existing conditions but hypocritically claims he has a plan that covers the same which no one has seen for five years! This in the middle of a deadly pandemic that has claimed 231,000 US lives?

Is it the nepotism inherent in the appointments of almost the entire Trump clan in government that is worthy of emulation and continuation? I had mistakenly thought such was anathema in America.

Even the officially sanctioned locking up of children like dogs in cages in horrible conditions, separated from their parents. How does it sound when someone born of émigré parents considers all immigrants of a different race running to his country for protection from security and economic vagaries as criminals and rapists? Is that not the height of hypocrisy?

The overt support for ultra-right groups, even the violent armed wings, doesn’t fit the picture of democratic governance. Aren’t you shocked about the news and videos of business owners boarding up their glass front facades with plywoods in anticipation of violent uprising in case Trump loses? I had thought such only happens in what he derisively calls shithole countries? Who is in the hole with the shit now just after four years of mismanaging race relations and encouraging division and racial tension?

I had been schooled to believe, and I still think it is right, that in a democracy what you do is to get the people to come out and vote in the largest numbers possible. The objective is simple: to ensure the elected represents the choice of the majority of eligible voters.

It is therefore shocking that one candidate and his political party is clearly doing everything to prevent people from coming out to vote in his own election. Strange indeed.

Disabling the post office to prevent those who want to vote by post from doing so, making the mail drop points so few and far away that the elderly and the cost conscious may decide it is not just worth it, lying about previous mail-in ballots, legally blocking the counts of mailed-in ballots received after election day even when counting is still in process.

All this in a country that has thousands, if not millions of eligible armed forces personnel around the world who traditionally vote by post. Trump himself has always voted through mailed-in ballot!

The armed forces personnel were even mocked as losers anyway, by the same man that wants to stop them voting now. When you add this to their traditional gerrymandering what you will get are loads of folks deliberately prevented from voting.

This scenario could only benefit someone who is likely to lose if everyone votes and every ballot counts. Just yesterday, a courageous judge threw out a Republican instituted case to prevent 120,000 votes from being counted in Texas – kudos to a fearless judiciary.

A man still denies climate change even while the Koma tribe of Nigeria and the aborigines of Australia know and believe it is threatening our world. And worse he has pulled out America, arguably the most guilty country of carbon emission generation that eats up the ozone layer leading to ultraviolet rays heating up the earth and melting the ice glaciers causing a rise in sea levels and massive flooding.

The increased incidence of hurricanes and destructive weather occurrences have even impacted the USA more than other places, especially in the four Trumpian years.

Didn’t he propose the use of a nuclear bomb to blow out a hurricane in exasperation and an insane period of illogicality? Yet the same man has crippled the world organs dedicated to fighting this scourge and even laughs the idea of global warming to scorn. The earth will surely be imperiled by his re-election.

I hear, that one other way they are imitating Nigerian elections this time around is that their National Guard is preparing for, wait for it, Election Duty Deployments! Sounds familiar? And you can be sure Trump would want to use them to his advantage!

America is in a labor ward. But there is hope yet! Their generals know that their loyalty is to the country and not to a demagogue who still believes in 2020 that the earth is flat.

May God bless the United States of America and the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Written in Benin City, 3rd November 2020 – Austin Isikhuemen

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