Some people consider me to be a stubborn individual. And rightly so.

I consider myself to be an independent thinker who forms her own opinions and do not take kindly to being told what I should or should not believe.

 Just because someone says it repeatedly does not make it true.

Facts matter. If you want me to believe something that is inherently different to what I think, you need to prove to me I am wrong with documented evidence to the contrary.

Maybe that is why the newspaper business was so easy for me to love.

Since November of last year, former president Donald Trump and his cronies have claimed repeatedly that he won the 2020 election by “a landslide” and the election was “stolen” from him.

His political enablers have used this narrative to pass some of the most restrictive voting laws we have ever had on the books. Voters in some states will find themselves facing all kinds of difficulties in the 2022 elections next year.

All because of this perpetuated lie.

Unfortunately, the claim has been repeated so often by Trump and others, there is a significant number of folks who now believe it to be true.

The lie is being used as justification for just about anything legislators want to control or change regarding voting rights and duly elected officials.

It is now a weapon.

Revenge for people who dared to vote against Trump and payback for any lawmaker who refused to repeat it or bow to pressure to do so.

Last week Wyoming Representative Liz Cheney was removed from her leadership position among House Republicans.

She did not break any laws or was not caught with her pants down in the backroom. Nor had she failed to represent her constituents who elected her to Congress.

No, her only offense was openly criticizing Mr. Trump and voting to impeach him for his role in inciting his supporters in the January 6 attack on our nation’s capital.

After her removal, Cheney said she wants to make sure the former president never occupies the Oval Office again. She said she has “seen his lack of commitment and dedication to the Constitution.”

One representative who refused to vote for Cheney’s removal said it is a sad situation when a respected member of Congress must stand up and remind her educated peers that Joe Biden is the duly elected President of the United States and that they need to move on from the big lie.

Other state and local officials who did their jobs by certifying election results have found themselves facing backlash or estrangement from their own party.

Continuing to spread the big lie is not only dangerous, but also stupid.

Georgia, under pressure from Trump to count and recount, failed to find any mail-in voting fraud.

Nevada announced they had found “zero evidentiary support” for claims of fraud or bias.

Arizona completed a hand recount and used accredited forensic auditors who found no evidence of widespread fraud.

Even Trump’s own lapdog, former DOJ official William Barr concluded that there were not any election irregularities sufficient to change the outcome. So did Trump’s head of election security. He declared the “2020 election was the most secure in United States history.” Of course, he was later fired for making that statement.

Former Trump lawyer Sidney Powell is being sued by Dominion Voting Systems over her claims that their machines were rigged and accused the business of being involved in voter fraud.

Powell recently filed a response to the lawsuit asking that it be dismissed because “reasonable people would not accept such statements as fact.”

Let that sink in for a moment.

Based on real evidence, the truth is the various claims alleging a stolen election have been investigated and litigated. Judges across this country have heard claims of illegal voting and determined they were without merit.

There is no way that many cities and states and personnel could be involved in this delusional conspiracy to steal an election.

You must wonder if these legislators have ever read the story about the Emperor’s new clothes. Fawning over a man who would throw them under the bus to get his way makes them look weak and needy.

 Accepting the results of a validated fair and honest election is what this country needs from its representatives.

 Repeatedly claiming that it was stolen is not enough. Without evidence, it is just noise.

Sometimes the truth is not what we want to hear, and it is often hard to accept. But that does not make it a lie.

I must agree with the King, Elvis Presley. Presley said, “the truth is like the sun. You can shut it out for a time, but it ain’t going away.”

Anita McGill is a former publisher of The Sentinel. She can be reached by email at anitamcgill99@gmail.com.

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