Will America Embrace or Reject Fascism in 2020?
Fascists build walls, like they did around East Germany. Donald Trump is building a new, unscalable wall around the White House today, and the Republican party has spent the past four years celebrating a wall on our southern border.
Fascists divide and imprison people based on ideology and race. Trump and the Republicans have put children in cages after tearing them away from their mothers, and built out a private for-profit prison system to hold refugees of color.
Fascists don’t believe in free and fair elections, and Donald Trump and the Republican party have spent years fighting to make it harder for Americans to vote and have their vote counted. Right now, they are launching hundreds of lawsuits and other efforts across our nation to prevent people from voting or to block already-cast votes from being counted.
Fascists support the power of very wealthy people and the corporations that make them rich; after all, the definition of fascism is “the merger of corporate and state interests.“ Trump and the Republican Party have shoveled over 3 trillion dollars to the wealthiest Americans, and work every day to gut protective regulations.
Fascists use threats and intimidation to get their way politically, and Trump and his Republican allies are openly encouraging the American Taliban to harass Democratic politicians and voters on our roads and highways, in our cities, and at our polling places.
Fascist use the power of government to corruptly reward their friends and twist the law to punish their enemies. Trump and the Republicans he’s put in charge of the Justice Department and DHS have openly pursued politically motivated investigations, while giving giant corporations a pass and trying to block prosecutions and convictions of Trump’s criminal cronies.
Fascist pervert the justice systems of their nations by packing their court systems with rightwing ideologues. Trump and the Republicans have spent four years packing our federal court system with often-openly-unqualified rightwing lawyers.
The world is watching, as the Republican Party has spent the last 20 years pushing America in an openly fascistic direction.
Last week, a group of more than 80 of America’s and the world’s top scholars and experts on authoritarianism and fascism wrote an open letter to the American public, saying, “We have seen all of these patterns in our study of the past, and we recognize the signs of a crisis of democracy... We need to turn away from the rule by entrenched elites and return to the rule of law. We must replace the politics of ‘internal enemies’ with a politics of adversaries in a healthy, democratic marketplace of ideas.”
They warn that “[I]f we don’t, we will indeed face dark days ahead.“
It’s a cliché to point out that after the Constitutional Convention in 1787 Ben Franklin said that they had created “a republic, if you can keep it,“ but he was right.