When trust is gone so is a romantic relationship, a job, a friendship, a teacher, a spiritual or religious path, and a democracy. At this moment in the history of our country, it is the latter than is of most concern to me, for with the erosion and dissolution of democracy comes fascism, and with fascism, as we have seen repeatedly throughout history, comes terror, destruction, racism, civil war, dictatorship, injustice, one party rule, intolerance, and, yes, genocide.
How does trust erode? It comes from putting doubt in people’s mind about what is the truth. Orwell’s 1984 spelled it out clearly as the fascist government in charge assigned a new language called Newspeak for all to follow and adhere to. The Republican Party, under the influence of Donald Trump, along with evangelical white Christians who think Trump is a divine intervention sent by God, is currently engaged in doing just that, and a large percentage of our population is swallowing the bait hook, line, and sinker.
As examples, they’ve derisively labeled the House Commission Investigating the Insurrection at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 “a kangaroo court” and a witch hunt, despite the fact that almost all the witnesses testifying before it were and are loyal Republicans, even former Trump Republicans. They’ve labeled the adjudicated rioters and insurrectionists “patriots.” They call all Democrats “liberals” and “Communists.” They even target their own Party members as RINOs, Republicans in Name Only and have peppered them with death threats and primary challenges with Trump loyalists. They have stacked our Supreme Court with “originalists” whose aimed is to tear down the separation of church and state, hoping to establish a White Christian Nation overseen by one party enforced by white nationalist militias. They have waged various culture wars weaponizing innocent language, whipping their death threatening mobs into a bloodthirsty frenzy using Fox “News” as more-than-willing media goons. They call Joe Biden “malevolent”, blaming him for tearing down the fabric of our nation.
And what is this fabric, these violent Republicans think our country is made of? We’d have to go back to about 1870 to answer that. Back then, in practice, some citizens had more rights than others. Women were not permitted to vote, not able to choose much of anything about their lives, and relegated only to the kitchen and child bearing and rearing. Black Americans, recently emancipated by the Federal Government, were intimidated, threatened, murdered, and rendered politically, socially, vocationally, and culturally emasculated in much of the country. Jews and other minorities were discriminated against to such a degree that they were denied access to the basic rights of “life, liberty, and happiness” enjoyed by their white Christian counterparts. Black Christians were duly ostracized from a society that did not consider them equal citizens, let alone full human beings! And this wasn’t just in the South, although the ignominious practice of lynching was a particular past-time of the Deep South and its KKK.
So the MAGA Trump Republican, White Christian Evangelical Nationalist of today want a Christian mono-culture, beholden to one ruling party, led by an autocratic dictator wielding an iron hand of submission of a populace forbidden to protest or demonstrate, denied due process, and subject to arrest for violation of its rules, however arcane and arbitrary.
Not sure what that will look like in reality? Think present day Russia under Putin. Think present day China under Xi Jinping. Think present day North Korea under Kim Jong Un. Think present day Iran under the Ayatollas. Think present day Hungary under Orban. Think present day Syria under Assad. Think present day Cuba under Castro. Think present day Brazil under Bolsonaro. Think any country where the people do not consent to the present government, and are not permitted to voice their disagreements without threat of arrest or harassment.
America is on a razor’s edge of being such a country if we continue down this Trump Republican/white Christian Nationalist road to perdition. The erosion of trust, the redefinition of truth, even a call to arms: The infrastructure for the establishment of fascism is underway.
This is a Mayday call. We need all hands on deck to vote for Democratic candidates this November, enmass. Our democracy and your freedoms are at stake.
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