The Right Wing's Creeping Fascist Agenda
To pretend it doesn't exist, or to pooh pooh the danger it poses to our nation's democracy would be foolish. This is why Democrats need to succeed in delivering on their promises of more jobs, of universal health insurance, of better times. Because if they don't the storm that is moving ever closer each day they fail to act, each day they appear weak in the face of right wing agitprop, will come. No doubt the politicians of the Weimar republic never thought the Nazis would obtain power. They only won 30% of the vote after all? The actual number of party members was much fewer than that. How could they destroy a democratic society with so few adherents?
[The National Security]
It's not easy to kill a President.
The Secret Service protects them pretty well. Yet, that doesn't seem to be stopping the "Who will rid us of this meddlesome Negro?" crowd this past week. They have been doing their best to incite violence against the man who won the Presidency with more popular votes and more electoral votes than their beloved Dubya ever did. Let's run down our list, shall we?
On Saturday, a Republican Rep from Arizona, Trent Franks calls Obama an "enemy of humanity," "godless" and "insane" as well as questioning his US citizenship for the umpteenth time. Another speaker, Kitty Werthmann, at that same "Take Back America" conference compared Obama to Adolph Hitler –in great detail— and had this to say to her audience:
“So, keep your guns, and buy more guns, and buy ammunition. ... Take back America. Don’t let them take the country into Socialism. And I refer again, Hitler’s party was National Socialism.”
On Saturday we also saw the publishing of a poll on Facebook which asked the question "Should Obama be killed?" The choices: “No,” “Maybe,” “Yes,” and “Yes if he cuts my health care.” Ten percent of the voters in that online poll actually selected one of the options which supported murdering our lawfully elected President.
And today? Well today we saw an online "news outlet" post an article by John L. Perry calling on the military to remove Obama from office in a coup:
"Will the day come when patriotic general and flag officers sit down with the president, or with those who control him, and work out the national equivalent of a “family intervention,” with some form of limited, shared responsibility?
Imagine a bloodless coup to restore and defend the Constitution through an interim administration that would do the serious business of governing and defending the nation. Skilled, military-trained, nation-builders would replace accountability-challenged, radical-left commissars. Having bonded with his twin teleprompters, the president would be detailed for ceremonial speech-making."
Not that this is anything new. We're less than one month away from the anniversary of an actual plot in which two potential assassins and mass murderers were arrested. We've seen a massive uptick in threats made against President Obama's life compared to the same number made against President Bush. We've seen right wing "tea baggers" brandishing semiautomatic firearms at town hall meetings attended by Obama. We've heard so-called "Men of God" openly pray for the death of our President and publicly claim he deserves to die.
We've seen posters of Obama with a Hitler mustache, or with a "Joker" face (no doubt in violation of copyrights related to the film, The Dark Knight). We've seen a Republican Congressman from South Carolina scream at Obama during a joint address of Congress "You Lie!" and become a mini celebrity for doing what would have been considered unthinkable (and probably labeled "treason" by conservatives had it happened to Bush) with respect to any other President. We've seen calls for secession from prominent Republican governors like Rick Perry of Texas. We've heard TV clowns call Obama a racist who hates white people, and a radio clown call for the second coming of racial segregation.
And yet ... this has been quite the week. In a span of five days we've seen quite literally some of the most blatant, outrageous, and frankly dangerous statements made that I can recall, ever. Statements made in public speeches and online that make it very clear they consider our duly elected President of the United States a menace who must be removed from office ASAP, dead or alive (and they're not too choosy about which of those is employed to accomplish the deed).
Not since the tumultuous days of the 1960's when assassination of major Democratic politicians and other prominent Civil Rights leaders seemed to have become the new national pastime, have I seen such an outpouring of vitriol. And make no mistake: they intend to incite violence against President Obama, other Democrats and liberals, African Americans, Latinos and other minorities, gays and anyone else they deem not a legitimate citizen of "their America."
Not our America. Not a country where freedom, liberty and justice for all is promised regardless of race, color or creed, but an America limited to "right thinking" "real Americans." White Christian Americans (and maybe a few right thinking Jews).
It's easy to pass this off as just so much hot air by a few blowhards who will never act on their stupid, pitiful threats. No doubt that's what many Jews said about the Nazis before Hitler became Chancellor.
No doubt that's what many Tutsis thought about all the hate speech on the radio by Hutu radio announcers prior to the genocide in Rwanda. But history tells us nothing is unthinkable, and nothing is impossible, and no country is safe from the threat of political violence. How soon we forget our own history. Who in 1858 thought that the election of President Lincoln would lead to a bloody Civil War in which more people died than in any other conflict in our history (including Lincoln himself).
Who imagined the incessant Republican and right wing hate speech that was aimed against President Bill Clinton, as conservative a Democrats has ever been elected to that office, would end in the worst domestic terrorist attack in our country?
I didn't use to think such things were possible. But I'm not a right wing fanatic who's feeling hopeless and helpless right now because a black man has been elected president. I'm not a person who ingests the lies promulgated by Fox news and right wing bloggers and Rush Limbaugh and every other hate talk radio host like it was manna from heaven. And those people are out there.
Some of them have lost their jobs. Some of them have lost their health insurance and their homes. Some of them are just anxious and afraid and angry. But they are filled with fear and filled with rage. That rage is being directed at anyone who does not look like them or think like them or believe what they believe. And it is no coincidence. There are groups in this country who are planning to use that rage, some for political gain or media attention or money from lobbyists, but others with a more sinister agenda: to incite violence and intimidate those of us who aren't members of "the club" with the threat of such violence.
A fire is building within those people, the same sort of fire that led to fascism in the 1930's, the revival of the Klu Klux Klan, lynching, assassinations, right wing militias and plots against another popular Democratic President at a time of a grave domestic economic crisis when the interests of the rich, of large corporations, of bankers and their friends, the con artists on Wall Street were threatened.
To pretend it doesn't exist, or to pooh pooh the danger it poses to our nation's democracy would be foolish. This is why Democrats need to succeed in delivering on their promises of more jobs, of universal health insurance, of better times. because if they don't the storm that is moving ever closer each day they fail to act, each day they appear weak in the face of right wing agitprop, will come. No doubt the politicians of the Weimar republic never thought the Nazis would obtain power. They only won 30% of the vote after all? The actual number of party members was much fewer than that. How could they destroy a democratic society with so few adherents?
Well, it was easy. All it took was the inability of Hitler's opponents to believe what their eyes were showing them on a daily basis. Well I believe what my eyes are showing me. I hope that enough Democrats do too. My fear is that they will refuse to acknowledge the threat and continue down the path of incrementalism, and caution, and playing to the mythical middle and politics as usual. That strategy and those tactics could lead to something far worse than a mere electoral disaster for their party. It might very well lead to the end of the United States as we have known it.
Please feel free to post your comments directly or send them to Milton@blackstarnews.com
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