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What In The World : January 7, 2022

On This Day In History

On January 7, 1789 the United States held its first presidential election. Congress set January 7th as the date on which the states chose their electors for the first presidential election.

It wasn’t until February 4 that George Washington was elected by the electors. And on April 30th of that year, Washington took office.

In the U.S., according to the Constitution, the people do not elect the president directly. The states appoint electors to represent the people. This system has become controversial especially in recent years since two presidents won the electoral college vote but lost the popular vote. Both of those presidents led the country into unnecessary disasters.

The authoritarian leader of Kazakhstan, President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, said Friday that he had authorized the nation’s security forces to “fire without warning” at protestors. The government moved to bring an end to two days of chaos and violence after peaceful protests descended into scenes of anarchy.

“We hear calls from abroad for the parties to negotiate to find a peaceful solution to the problems,” President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said in an address to the nation. “This is just nonsense.”

What negotiations can there be with criminals and murderers,” he said. “They need to be destroyed and this will be done.”

The government said that order had been “mainly restored” across the country as Russian troops joined with the country’s security forces to quell widespread unrest.

In America:
Sidney Poitier, whose portrayal of resolute heroes in films like “To Sir With Love,” “In the Heat of the Night” and “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” established him as Hollywood’s first Black matinee idol and helped open the door for Black actors in the film industry, has died at 94.

Mr. Poitier, whose Academy Award for the 1963 film “Lilies of the Field” made him the first Black performer to win in the best-actor category, rose to prominence when the civil rights movement was beginning to make headway in the United States. His roles tended to reflect the peaceful integrationist goals of the struggle.

Today, January 7, is the anniversary of the first U.S. presidential election. It was the first time each state chose electors to elect the president. Thus began the electoral college, the system which allowed Donald Trump to be elected president in spite of the fact that the majority of voters voted against him. It is the system that Donald Trump tried to manipulate in the 2020 elections so that he could stay in power.

The process of electing a president was challenged a year ago by an angry mob of supporters of Donald Trump, who falsely claimed that the election had been stolen. Encouraged by the president, the mob bashed their way into the Congress building and headed for the chambers of Congress to stop the counting of electoral votes.

They did not succeed, the votes were counted. But the mob, and the legislators and media personalities who encouraged the mob have done a lot of damage to the country. They have damaged the reputation of the U.S. in that some countries now do not know if the U.S. is stable, or if it still has a democracy.

Donald Trump gave support to President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev of Kazakhstan. By all accounts Tokayev is an autocrat who has ruled like a dictator. This is who Donald Trump endorses. Protestors are organizing in Kazakhstan to end autocracy – end the dictatorship – and institute more democratic principals.

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