Why Do You Think I’m a Threat To America?
Voting for Republicans is, tragically, voting against America -- It’s really just that simple
Last week a very reasonable sounding fellow called into my show and said, essentially, “I voted twice for Trump and would again. Why do you think I’m a threat to America?”
We ended up debating tax policy and I never did fully answer his question (I’m a sucker for “reasonable”), so here’s my shot at it.
*Trump and the GOP are endorsing Tucker Carlson’s “Great Replacement Theory” that argues, in most of its various iterations, that wealthy international Jews (“George Soros”) are collaborating with Black and Hispanic people to replace white people at all levels of society.
This has led to an explosion of antisemitic, anti-Black, and anti-Hispanic violence and the murder of numerous people, both Black, Hispanic, Asian, and Jewish, in venues from synagogues to supermarkets to churches.
As America becomes more multiracial, bigots and political opportunists like Trump and the leadership of the GOP see this as an opportunity rather than as a threat to America. And, indeed, demagogues have used this strategy throughout history to seize political power, usually at the cost of great bloodshed and political and cultural upheaval, a price they’re openly willing to pay so long as it’s not their blood that’s spilled.
*Lying has become the core of their political strategy.
Back in 1940, President Franklin D. Roosevelt called out the GOP for using the Big Lie strategy that Hitler had employed in his rise to power. Republicans across the nation believed that Roosevelt was going to put unemployed people in concentration camps, that Social Security was a Ponzi scheme that would evaporate when FDR left office, and that if FDR was re-elected “democracy would end within four years.”
In a speech in Philadelphia on October 23, 1940, Roosevelt warned America:
“I make the charge now that those falsifications are being spread for the purpose of filling the minds and the hearts of the American people with fear. They are used to create fear by instilling in the minds of our people doubt of each other, doubt of their Government, and doubt of the purposes of their democracy.”
World War II and the successes of the New Deal brought America together, but now Trump and the GOP are repeating the “semi-fascist” approach they tried against FDR in 1940.
And it’s working. Over two-thirds of Republicans believe the 2020 election was stolen from Trump, and almost three-quarters believe that “left wing protestors” are responsible for January 6th and Trump bears no responsibility.
*Trump and the GOP want women back in the kitchen and the bedroom.
Trump is lionized by his party after bragging that he grabs women by the crotch and “when you’re a star they let you do it” while being credibly accused of rape and sexual assault by over 20 women.
Trump’s Republican appointees to the Supreme Court helped create the majority that overturned Roe v Wade, and now Lindsey Graham and other Republicans are trying their best to enact a nationwide abortion ban, reversing fifty years of progress in gender rights.
*Republicans are willing to use gay, lesbian, and trans people as political pawns to generate hate and fear.
Calling teachers and politicians “groomers” and arguing that queer people represent an existential threat to our children harkens back to an era when violence against, and even murder of, LGBTQ people was commonplace.
Republicans in Congress and on the Supreme Court are openly calling for the reversal of the right to marry, while stirring a cultural movement that makes non-cis people unsafe nationwide. They are risking peoples’ lives and making a living hell for millions of Americans, all to win elections.
*DeSantis and Abbott are reprising Trump’s ginning up fear of asylum-seekers from Central and South America to win re-election.
It’s now come out that DeSantis’ people lied to asylum-seekers to get them on the planes to Martha’s Vineyard, and just yesterday I got an email from DeSantis talking about a poor white woman who was killed by an “illegal immigrant.”
These are the tools fascists and dictators use. Viktor Orbán used fear and hatred of Syrian refugees as a lever into political office, just as Hitler identified the “enemy within” as being Jews and immigrants to Germany.
The abuse of desperate and fragile human beings in crisis is one of worst political crimes possible.
*Trump and many Republicans are encouraging stochastic terrorism.
America has seen a multitude of “lone wolf” murders and terrorist incidents over the past six years, all tied to the Trump cult.
From telling people at his rallies that he’ll pay their legal bills when they beat up protestors to threatening the nation with violence if he’s indicted, the GOP’s embrace of stochastic terrorism is only matched in precedent by the Klan in the half-century after the collapse of Reconstruction.
*Trump is now openly embracing a religious cult that has led some of its followers to murder, and the GOP is failing to call him out about it.
Last week a man murdered his wife and their dog, wounded his daughter, and then killed himself in a Qanon-fueled rage about the state of America and our failure to re-instate Trump, according to his surviving daughter.
Qanon promotes the theory that Trump is essentially the return of Christ (there’s now a bestselling book openly promoting this idea, along with dozens of others claiming he’s “anointed by God”) and will soon seize power and then kill the nation’s Democrats. Jim Jones had nothing on these people.
*Trump and the GOP have revived The Protocols of the Elders of Zion that Hitler used as justification for his “final solution” with their blood libel against Democrats.
Arguing that Democrats (and, ask any Qanon acolyte, their Jewish “allies”) are pedophiles who drink the blood of tortured children to get adrenochrome for a high, Trump and Republicans are doubling down on one of the most horrific slanders ever perpetrated in history.
And expanding it.
*Trump stole secrets from the US government and may have already given them to Putin, as he did the name of an Israeli spy in his first week in office. Or he may have sold them.
But Republicans don’t care: they’re still defending and sucking up to him. Patriotism is dead in the GOP.
And was Jared‘s $2 billion just a down payment? How much was delivered to Trump’s secret offshore banking accounts?
*Trump aligned himself with the world’s worst dictators and shunned our democratic allies, and the GOP is just fine with that.
From his first trip abroad to the home of the man who murdered a Washington Post columnist and disposed of his body with a bone saw, to being “in love” with the dictator of North Korea, to taking the side of Russia’s dictator over US intelligence in Helsinki, Republicans never even blinked as Trump trashed America’s alliances, including NATO and the UN.
Apparently they’ve lost all affection for the idea of democracy in a constitutional republic. Dictatorship now appeals to them.
*Republicans across the nation are trying to pre-rig election results by purging voting rolls, cutting back on early voting, and passing laws giving their legislatures the ability to overturn election results.
Republicans are proudly trashing what Thomas Paine called the beating heart of our democracy, our election system:
“The right of voting for representatives is the primary right by which other rights are protected. To take away this right is to reduce a man to slavery, for slavery consists in being subject to the will of another, and he that has not a vote in the election of representatives is in this case.”
*Republicans deny climate change and block any attempts to stop it, while the fossil fuel industry lavishes them with cash and Americans die nearly every day from floods, wildfires, and drought.
Death is their brand. Even the death of most life on our planet, so long as they can get some short-term cash and help holding onto power.
*Trump encouraged police brutality while the GOP packed our courts with incompetent but Trump-loyal judges like Judge “Loose” Cannon.
They simply don’t believe in democracy or the rule of law: winning is all that matters with these folks.
Packing courts and using police to terrorize people is the first step every wannabee dictator takes. Putin did it. Orbán did it. Duterte did it. Erdogan did it. Mussolini did it. Most recently it was Trump and McConnell‘s turn…
The bottom line is that if you’re supporting this long (and incomplete) list of horribles, you are a threat to America.
The GOP that my father proudly campaigned for is dead.
Nixon flipped it to corruption and racism taking bribes and rolling out his Southern Strategy.
Reagan corrupted it cutting a deal with Iran to hold the hostages in exchange for weapons.
Bush was handed the White House by five corrupt Republicans on the Supreme Court in defiance of the 10th Amendment.
Trump took the presidency with explicit and overt help from Russia.
Voting for Republicans is, tragically, voting against America. It’s really just that simple.