At this disturbingly divisive and rancorous moment in our Nation, it would seem relevant and useful, to recall the 1935, Sinclair Thomas novel, “It Can’t Happen Here.” The prescient work published a full 86 years ago, describes the uncanny ease, with which the rise of a charismatic, populist, demagogue, similar to Adolph Hitler, may come to power, disastrously resulting in a dystopic and autocratic, political government. [Hence its title]. A reading or review of this work should dissuade any thoughtful person from the misguided impression that such a tragedy could not, at any time, occur in our democratic Nation; indeed, that, recent events, conceivably, might portend a harbinger of such nightmarish tragedy.
Our readings indicate a historically, tried and true, household recipe for the successful preparation of this bitter repast, evincing its authentic and dystopic, autocratic and repressive lifestyle, flavored with a generous overlay of cold, unsweetened, quotidian fear. To access this consistently utilitarian and reliably, error-free recipe, one need not go to the trouble to consult the cookbooks, ex., “The Joy of Cooking,” or “The Silver Palate,” nor even, Ms. Julia Childs, herself; the reported events, appearing in the daily newspaper, will suffice to favor the reader with more than sufficient factual information.
The sycophantic followers of Donald J, Trump, essentially, made up of the vast, populist “underbelly” of our Nation, whose extant cultish adoration of, and obeisance to, that bizarre, orange, Deity, prior to his Presidential election, seems to have endured, despite two shameful Congressional Impeachments, and his election loss. By such adamant support, they yet remain, loyally and unshakably, in accord with his crude and Nero-style, egocentric pathology, of favoring the pattern of autocratic rule.
Replicating the historically, inglorious, Adolph Hitler, and other such repulsive autocrats, Trump, with such cultish support has favored the reprise of the traditional, autocratic tactic of the subjective distortion of truthful facts, in favor of the more convenient use of “alternate facts, or, “alt-reality,” to comport with his own subjective distortions and evident ignorance, the disparagement and control of legitimate newspapers and other institutional media, the promotion of divisive prejudice, particularly, regarding people with dark skin as well as religious minorities, the disparagement of learning and educative science, opposition to immigration, the practice of promotion to high political office of his personal acolytes, of controlling police discipline and the military sanction of dissidents, abridgment of free [critical] speech, absolute intolerance of critical opinion, feminine and gender abuse, lack of empathy for the disabled, the xenophobic opposition to immigration, distrust of the intellectual, and legitimate academia, ready acceptance of irrational conspiracy ideations, and a universal, systemic paranoia and ubiquitous oppression.
The plethora of disturbing, undemocratic observations during the past, dystopic, term of Donald J. Trump, and the persistent, cultish loyalty of his followers [to the point of violent insurrection makes the fear of a regression to autocracy, with all of its despicable concomitants, a cogent possibility. Our Nation must constantly stay engaged and informed, so that it can, resist the false, but tactically alluring, snake-oil promises by skilled, wily demagogues, and continue to maintain a fully aware and informed citizenry, to be enabled to counter the conditions that allow autocracy, or “totalitarianism,” to flourish.
It can happen here.