We, like most traditionally mainstream American citizens, are profoundly disturbed and appalled by the public emergence of a presenting, organized, underbelly of the Nation. As we see things, the large conglomerate of members of the “underbelly” (inadequately educated, poorly informed, semi-illiterate, reductionist malcontents) previously remaining amorphous, and relatively dormant, was recently catalyzed and conglomerated by the influence and actions of the miscreant-in chief, Donald Trump.
We refer as illustration to the shameful persistence of racial and other chronic pathologies of prejudice, the violent acts of bigotry by quasi-military hate groups such as the “Oath Keepers,” “The Proud Boys,” and other White Christian National hate groups, the regular homicides, criminally practiced by Municipal police against unarmed black Americans, the expression and acts of Anti-Semitism, the prevalence of dedicated ownership and murderous use of guns, including military-style weapons, the xenophobic hatred of immigrants, homophobia, the maintenance of insane conspiracy theories against “the left,” not to omit the huge, unprecedented and truly shocking, Bastille-like, mob insurrection that took place against the Capitol Building in Washington, January 6.
Citizens of our Democratic Republic, of late, have come to feel existentially threatened, and concerned, engendered by the Capitol Building Insurrection, and have prioritized the need for the elimination, or at least the limitation in the action and nefarious influence, of such pestilent and dangerous groups.
It is our view that the appropriate elimination or, at the very least, the minimization of influence of such un-American cohorts, begins with their agreed, accurate and tactical designation as unabashed and un-American outliers; as enemies of decency and of decent aspirations for a benign and advancing society. Affording to such antagonists to the development of an enlightened and truly equitable democracy, some historically familiar and acceptable name, such as “right-wing” or “conservative,” is to unwisely bestow upon them an undeserved and misleadingly familiar and acceptable name. An organizational or definitive name supports a publicly communicated image of an intrinsically proper purpose or philosophy.
Our salient point is most important and perhaps deserving of a brief but illustrating, diversion. The well-known, deceivingly enigmatic, statement by the poetess, Gertrude Stein, encapsulates the essence of our theme. “A rose is a rose,” aesthetically and pointedly asserts that the rose is so uniquely beautiful that it is only comparable to itself. To merely refer to the word “rose” says Stern, cryptically, is to describe it sufficiently. By extreme contrast, the title, viz., “Right to Life,” for an organization that denies needed assistance to the fetus after birth and promulgates the ownership of guns, is misleadingly fraudulent.
To accurately categorize the essential character of any phenomenon is to summon up its accurate and intrinsic image or function. In the political context, the traditional designations of “Left” or “Right,” carry with them understood political ideologies concerning social equality and governmental participation in life or, alternatively, social hierarchy and small government. Such categorization is familiar shorthand in the designation of political belief. As these political differences endure, so do the recognized categories.
The salient point is that to rationally or empirically, categorize a group is to recognize its status and assure it of enduring qualities of deserved accreditation and, perhaps, permanency, or contrariwise, of discredit and abhorred existence. We have constantly observed that the un-American underbelly of our Nation, hundreds of which miscreants vandalized the Capitol Building, inflicting death, and destruction, have been referred to as ”right-wing extremists.” They are indeed extremists, but neither “right” nor “left” wing, on any rational and politically acceptable scale of divergent opinion. They are instead, far outside the pale of [any] civilized society. Their frame of reference is neither egalitarian nor hierarchal, but, perversely nihilistic. The mindset is assumedly based upon dissatisfaction with their life, for reasons which they defensively and in a self-serving manner, project on to third parties; these include, the government, ethnic groups, or racial minorities; self-concocted perceptions of causative conspiracies, on foreigners, on conceivably any cause, except, truthfully and painfully, upon their own personal failure. Each miscreant presumably, is the sole and exclusive owner of his own nuanced reasons and concocted rationalizations, for his discontent.
As our first recommended tactically rational step,* in the formulation of an effective response to these hateful miscreants, we must refrain, when referring to their democratically subversive groups, from the use of any historically familiar or accepted categories and construe our references to the grim reality of an unacceptable, malcontented, vicious mob. A rose is a rose, and a spade is, enduringly, called a spade.
*We will take the liberty to offer some further proposed steps regarding the management of the pathology of America’s underbelly, in succeeding posts.