They’re coming for you.
OK, I don’t know exactly who “they” are. But trust me, if you are a Republican, you’re next.
Yes, the “ludicrous idea that conservatives are particularly oppressed has been a theme of right-wing activism at large throughout the Trump era.” And we have now reached the logical conclusion of a political movement based upon fictional persecution, which is that “all of American life is a woke hellscape” that true patriots must vanquish.
For example, if a thuggish teenager murders a couple of people in the street, he becomes an “avatar of this imagined oppression for the next generation of conservatives,” who are outraged that “the system dared put him on trial for it.” Similarly, lunatics who stormed the Capitol and are now on trial are the real victims of the January 6 riot, because some of them might miss their Caribbean vacations.
The laughable idea that liberals are suppressing conservatives is engrained as a hard truth within the Republican Party. Indeed, “conservative activism hinges on the idea that the system isn’t fair to them,” and that their only recourse is often violence.
So where does this predilection for paranoia and embrace of false victimhood come from? Well, like so many of our political problems, it stems from white supremacy.
You see, right-wingers who wallow in racial hatred have found a home in the Republican Party. The GOP is no longer even trying to hide this most obvious of facts.
And those bigots who relish stomping on ethnic minorities will naturally think that “if white people don’t reign supreme, then they will be subjugated.” After all, that’s how racists treat others, so why would they expect mercy from blacks or Latinos who gain power?
Only wimpy liberals are naïve enough to believe that humans may actually be cooperative and empathetic. In contrast, a conservative boiling with racial animosity will presume that “if White people cannot kill at will, then they will be killed at will.”
Yikes! It’s a grim worldview indeed.
Perhaps this is why the conservative agenda is focused upon the needs of white men who are, in turn, “dominated by the psychology of threat and menace.” Conservative policy emphasizes derision and deliberate cruelty, and it is devoid of any “expression of sympathy, kindness, or grace.” Listen to conservatives long enough, and you will “hear callousness, invocations of combat, and whiffs of brutality.”
By the way, that is not just my opinion. It is the viewpoint of conservatives themselves.
So once again, we have to ask if there is any room for compromise or negotiation with a mindset that interprets sympathy as weakness and views any call for accountability as “proof of a fascistic liberal machine [that] is slowly crushing the conservative way of life.”
Before you answer, consider that three-quarters of Republicans believe Democratic policies “are so misguided that they pose a serious threat to the country.” Consider also that almost a third of Republicans believe violence may be necessary to “save” the United States.
Does that sound like a group ready to sit down and chat politely about the future of the country?
People who feel like they’re under attack will look for any reason to fight. So fighting is what the Republicans are now all about.
Featured image by U.S. Institute of Peace/CC BY 2.0