If you’re anything like me, you enjoy “being alive,” and would largely prefer to stay that way for the immediate time being.
“Being alive,” however, faced a serious challenge on Thursday, when President-elect Donald Trump tweeted his desire to “greatly strengthen” the United States’ capacity to end millions of lives in a deluge of atomic fire.
Ignoring, for a moment, the breezy use of the term “nukes” from a man who will soon have the capacity to launch them, Trump’s pledge to beef up America’s atomic arsenal should terrify you for any number of reasons. Among them:
-It would roll back decades of steady (albeit stuttered) reduction in the U.S. nuclear stockpile.
-It comes literally the same day as Russian President Vladimir Putin reportedly urged his military to bolster its nuclear capacity (Cold War? Let’s heat that sucker right back up, shall we?).
-If we do all die in a raging nuclear inferno, it will likely be in no small part thanks to a tweet, and boy are we gonna feel like schmucks if that’s what ultimately gets us.
Trump’s mid-afternoon mini-missive also serves as a good rebuttal to those who argue Trump’s Twitter is just a distraction from the serious stuff—as if the President-elect of the United States declaring an intent to grow the atomic arsenal isn’t serious enough?
Of course, President-elect Trump doesn’t have his hands on the nuclear football just yet. And, who knows, maybe this is just empty posturing.