By Michael Stevens Smith, July 4, 2019
If a modern-day Gibbons were to write about the decline and fall of the American empire, s/he would surely feature Trump’s bringing road crushing Abrams tanks and F15 fighter planes into Washington DC. Gibbons wrote about Julius Caesar who brought his imperialistic troops into Rome. To do so they had to cross the Rubicon river. This ended the Roman Republic.
Today, July 4, 2019 symbolically marks the American crossing of the Rubicon. You can’t have democracy at home and imperialism abroad. That was the lesson of Gibbons’ three volume history. But that won’t be discussed on “Fox and Friends,” so Trump will remain ignorant.
The rest of us should be scared. If there is a shattering event in our country those tanks and planes will be aimed at us. And of course if they do use troops against us it will all be legal. No one can predict if or when this would happen but is certainly a possibility.
Gibbons wrote around the time of the American revolution. He would have certainly appreciated the irony.
Michael Steven Smith is host of “Law and Disorder.” He is an author, speaker, and New York City attorney in the estimable tradition of the late Michael Ratner, who had been President of the Center for Constitutional Rights, and of the National Lawyers Guild.