Ignorance and evil always ride together because there is no hope without truth. Every post I write is to inform and provoke people to become seekers of truth. Always remember; Jesus said “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” Liars lie to deceive and enslave. If groups spread lies or tolerate widespread lying; they do it for a reason. Make sure you are on the side of righteousness and make an effort to find out the truth in our politics and society. The truth provides our only hope.
Tribalism seems to be on the rise in America. Threats and assaults against Jewish people, Asian people, and other identifiable groups like African Americans have increased. Many people cite the election of Trump as a marker in the rise of hate. Hopefully the election of 2020 will mark the beginning of a decline in tribalism, but hope is not a strategy. We must all act to fight the evils of racism, tribalism, selfishness, greed, and envy. To paraphrase John Lewis ‘if you see something, say something. Stand up against what is wrong.’ All of our futures and lives are at stake.
Staying positive in a time of peril is hard but important. We live in interesting times that demand we pay attention, act to protect our values, and communicate to others. The threats we face will not go away soon, so we must take care of ourselves and each other to overcome them. Hope and actions to create the future we deserve will sustain and strengthen us. Even seemingly small steps add up and create change.
Rosa Parks was a person who didn’t seek fame, but did not shrink from doing her part in the struggle for civil rights. After Mrs. Parks stood up for the civil rights of African-Americans on public transportation she was economically targeted, and had to leave Birmingham, Alabama. Darnella Frazier was not looking for recognition either, but she did the right thing when she saw evil. She held up a mirror not just to police behavior, but to America and what we allow in our public servants. Derek Chauvin would probably have gotten away with murder if Darnella had not stood up to his evil. With Darnella leading the way the Minneapolis community defined itself as people who would not tolerate clear evil. The struggle between those who will allow evil to triumph as long as it leaves them comfortable, and those who will not make a deal with the devil goes on. Hopefully new laws will protect decency for everyone and diminish opportunities for evil, but as the quote says “eternal vigilance is the price of liberty/“
Woke is defined as an active awareness of systematic injustices and prejudices, especially those related to civil and human rights. Many people claim to be woke these days with Trump followers claiming it is a scam. The radical right wing says there is no injustice in our society beyond that done to white people. WAIC persons are one description of the large subculture in our country that consists of White Americans with Inferiority or Insecurity Complex (WAIC). These Americans are fortunately a minority of White Americans, but there are more than anyone should be comfortable with. WAIC persons spread and believe lies that make them feel better about themselves. They blame others for their misfortune rather than taking responsibility, and those others are usually minorities to avoid a confrontation with self-deception. WAIC persons would rather support a conman and ridiculous conspiracies than risk confronting their insecurities or self-loathing. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said that ‘we will learn to live together as brothers, or we will die as fools.’ WAIC people are fine with foolishness, death, and destruction as long as they can keep pretending they are better than someone else. Ignorance, lies, death, and destruction for these wretched souls beats truth, equal treatment, or a society based on high moral ideals.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott lifted mask restrictions after the CDC asked that everyone continue to mask up until we reach higher levels of vaccination. The Republican governor of Mississippi did the same after Florida governor DeSantis bragged at CPAC that his state was a bastion of freedom for defying the health experts. Greg Abbott has already been complicit while Texans died and suffered due to Republican leadership’s 20 plus year failure to prepare the power grid for cold weather conditions. Republicans in the Senate refuse to recognize the results of the 2020 elections except for their own victories. Republicans are becoming a divisive and malevolent force as they attack the republic for their failure to hold power. Our country could become increasingly destabilized if character does not become a descriptor of Republicans. Republicans have become too wed to racism hidden under the slogan that “Government is the problem” as Reagan said. Government is the problem when it attempts to guarantee the rights of citizens no matter their color apparently. Research and vote to hold politicians accountable for truth and policy. Fight against greed, lies, and fear to save our republic!
Winston Churchill is quoted as saying “empires of the future will be empires of the mind”. To me he is saying that the old tribal empires are the past, and the future will be driven ideas. Until recently America was perhaps the most admired nation in the world. Four years of Trump’s xenophobia, fascism, and racism have left even allies feeling that they cannot trust America because Americans put him in power. We allowed our strengths of truth and diversity to be undermined by a clownish wannabe dictator. America is on the comeback trail under the leadership of Joe Biden, but our problem is a Republican party that has surrendered to the ideas of white supremacy and Trump. The fight against the idea that tribalism will give followers a better life than other Americans can be won by truth, courage, and the embrace of the humanity of all. Dr. King said that “we will learn to live together as brothers, or we will die as fools.” The struggle to save our republic is critical on multiple levels. Failure will result in chaos, collapse, and on-coming climate disaster. Be an ace. Research our societal issues and stay active in our politics; activism and voting is better than any alternative.
Poet Amanda Gorman spoke of people who would rather shatter our republic than share it. The description sounds completely appropriate in light of the MAGA crowd and Republicans threatening the vote for 2020 and beyond. Republican legislators around the country are working to make voting harder, in a country that already has low percentages of the eligible population participating. The United States increasingly seems a country where a percentage of the population views the rest as targets for submission, not fellow citizens. The main tools in the conflict to control America are lies, threats, gerrymandering, and terrorism from Republicans; Democrats counter with demographic trends leading to political dominance because the other side offers nothing for working people. The Republican issue is failing to believe in conservative theory leading to policies and solutions the majority of Americans will vote for; so they lie. Our politics can be fixed if we can get Republicans to get back to practical solutions to problems rather than just knee-jerk anti-spending and anti-socialism. Capitalism is the engine of our society, but is not the best solution for every problem. Do you want police officers paid by the number of tickets they issue? America and Republicans can easily do better by rejecting Reagan’s idea that government is the problem. Real life is more complex than zero-sum thinking allows for. Sharing is far better than a broken country for all of us.
The American legal system has to capture and punish the terrorists and criminals who assaulted and sacked the US Capitol. The mere fact that this must be stated is an indictment of systemic white supremacy in America. Many Americans think the Capitol assault was not a big deal, and a few people got out of control. The same people would be ready to declare war and invade another country if the same assault had been staged by Iranians or Chinese. If the attack had been staged by Black Americans the death toll would have been tremendous. America has an issue with racism, and it threatens to become a lot worse if white supremacist terrorism is not dealt with appropriately. The focus of the attack was to take the defeat of Donald Trump and create victory by deleting unwanted votes (both minority and white votes). The plan was a repeat of what took place in 1876 to end Reconstruction, beginning the Jim Crow era of racial marginalization and segregation. The lies about the election being stolen were not challenged by most Republicans or the conservative media echo chamber. Truth and justice were not even speed bumps in the pursuit of a reinforced system of white supremacy. Whether people claimed to be evangelicals, QAnon, proud boys, or Klu Klux Klan, the truth was not deemed to be worthy of consideration to keep a lying Trump in office for four more years. Four more years of corruption, abuse, and lies to create a revised America that no longer respected the Constitution. For America to move forward in strength we must believe and act as if ‘knowing the truth will set us free’ to paraphrase Jesus.
In an excellent New York Times opinion piece titled The Resentment That Never Sleeps, Thomas B. Edsall boiled down the facts of our current politics. Voters support Trump against our constitution because they are afraid of losing status and need their fellow citizens diminished to feel good about themselves. It is appalling that people are so empty inside that they want a dictator to attack women and minorities to feel good. Our current situation is that dark and we must face this darkness directly to defeat it. A quote from the article: Building on psychological research on status-seeking, we argue that at the core of extreme political discontent are motivations to achieve status via dominance, i.e., through the use of fear and intimidation. Essentially, extreme political behavior reflects discontent with one’s own personal standing and a desire to actively rectify this through aggression. – source “Beyond Populism” research paper. Lyndon B. Johnson said it more simply: “If you can convince the lowest white man he’s better than the best colored man, he wont notice your picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he’ll empty his pockets for you.” It is time for Americans to embrace our constitution and the truth to defend the dignity of all people, and hope.