Pell Center

The Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy at Salve Regina is a multidisciplinary research center focused at the intersection of politics, policies and ideas.

Tom Nichols on the Current Threats to American Democracy

Air Dates: December 4-10, 2023

From the violence in the Middle East to the dysfunction in Congress, the world feels increasingly untethered. Tom Nichols spent his early career analyzing threats to American security and now is unapologetic in his warnings about the threats to American democracy.

Nichols is an author and a staff writer for The Atlantic. His expertise encompasses a broad range of topics, including nuclear weapons, international security, Russia, and the overarching challenges to democracy globally and in the United States. Nichols has a background as a legislative aide in both the Massachusetts House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. He taught at the U.S. Naval War College for 25 years and now holds the position of professor emeritus. Among his published works are “The Death of Expertise” and “Our Own Worst Enemy: The Assault from Within on Modern Democracy.

On this episode of “Story in the Public Square,” Nichols discusses the impacts the unseriousness among our electorate could impact the upcoming election. He says, “What I worry about if Trump is reelected is that he will turn the United States into an authoritarian government. Trash the Constitution, turn the Justice Department into a police force that he uses against his enemies, and turn the U.S. military into a Praetorian guard. I think we will lose our democracy if Donald Trump gains the White House again.”

“Story in the Public Square” broadcasts each week on public television stations across the United States. A full listing of the national television distribution is available at this link. In Rhode Island and southeastern New England, the show is broadcast on Rhode Island PBS on Sundays at 11:00 a.m. and is rebroadcast Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. An audio version of the program airs Saturdays at 8:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. ET, Sundays at 4:30 a.m., 2:30 p.m., 9:30 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s popular P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of the United States), channel 124. “Story in the Public Square” is a project of the Pell Center at Salve Regina University. The initiative aims to study, celebrate and tell stories that matter.