Recently I had cause to read Steven Coonts’ “Liberty’s Last Stand,” a good but scary book. It is about a megalomaniac who has somehow been elected to two terms to this nation’s highest office. He wants to serve a third, fourth and more by passing an amendment to the Constitution, making it legal. How? By bullying the bobble-head toadies in Congress, who lack intestinal fortitude, into submission and then ordering his brown shirts (who are only following orders) to arrest those on Capitol Hill who dare stand against him. Next, he threatens to shut down newspapers and television stations and imprison their editors and owners if disparaging remarks about him ever appear in their news.

What does this fictional character do with the large number of men and women who oppose him? Dissidents are sent to concentration camps.

Anyone reading the book might question how that character got elected in the first place. He must have shown the qualities of a dictator during his first term, so how could he have been elected to a second term? The book doesn’t detail an answer but the election was probably won with votes from the title character’s party faithful, with help from a few other groups who believed the character’s promises.

In the words of the Peanuts cartoon, “We have met the enemy and he is us.”

Could never happen in real life here in America? Don’t bet on it.

Bitsy Ionta, Dixfield