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Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.
The left is bleating and complaining these days about the “Trump era” causing the political polarization of America. That’s good for a belly laugh! Not only a complete re-write of history, but it’s a blatant lie.
The polarization started back in the 1960s, planned and carried out by the left. Remember during the Vietnam War, the left screaming about our troops killing babies? Yes, that’s when real political nastiness was put on steroids by the left, when the anarchists and socialist hippies in America abandoned all ethics and displayed unacceptable evil and violence when protesting the war. They started a national movement to refer to members of the American military as “baby-killers”; military people were ambushed at airports by leftist protesters. The Symbionese Liberation Army murdered people. Leftist criminals launched urban riots, lootings, and car burnings from 1965 to 1967. Then in 1968, in Chicago, police fought a pitched battle with violent leftist protestors. Lunatic violence from the Left returned to Chicago in 1969, in the form of a “Days of Rage” rampage through Chicago streets.
The left then moved to vilify the military-industrial complex by coming out with the “General Bullmoose” attacks that tried to convince American citizens that all corporations and those who ran companies were greedy villains. This blatant attempt at class warfare, pitting one “class” of citizens against another and keeping them at each other’s throats was and is a favorite tactic of the left. All those lies started a long era of political polarization in this country.
Fast forward to the 1980s, when the Democratic Party became something it had not been before. It took several years, but the Party was highjacked by special interest groups and extreme leftists, with agendas for drastic change. The Party became unrecognizable from what it once was, when it had often been led by statesmen. The Democrats’ new hodge-podge of special interest groups lapsed into the atrocious and ugly practice of demonizing judges who were nominated for the U.S. Supreme Court.
Now we move to 1994, when the Dem Party became so out-of-touch with regular people that Republicans took the national Congress and the Florida Legislature from them. After the sea-change Republican victories in the 1994 mid-term elections, Democrats began a campaign to create attack ads and mudslinging advertising. Their allies, the mainstream media (MSM), focused on attack ads and created a vicious cycle of negative politics and name-calling driven by politicians and political consultants on the left, working hand in hand with liberal journalists. This was the beginning of the modern “culture war” and the continuation of identity politics of race and gender, started by American liberals in the 1960s —the era when the left drew first blood.
After the 1994 elections, the Republicans were forced to fight fire with fire because they were losing the media battles as the MSM incessantly demonized them. Republicans pushed to radically reform welfare and national lending policies. Newt Gingrich and the “Contract With America” put welfare reform high on the GOP agenda in 1995. The Republican reforms passed and this was the upending of the Democrats’ radically liberal welfare system, created by Lyndon Johnson, nurtured along by Jimmy Carter, and later by Bill Clinton from 1992 to 1994. The reaction of Dems and major U.S. daily newspapers was to scale up attacks against Republicans.
Thus, 1994 to 1995 marked the watershed time when nastiness in politics escalated again into the big-time. This Democratic obstructionism resulted in the shutdown of the federal government in the winter of 1995-96, and later the House’s impeachment of Clinton in 1998.
So there you have it. That’s how the current nastiness got its start, with the left in the role of primary culprit, assisted by the MSM praising their every move. The media refused to scold or blame the left for putting partisanship on overdrive and stoking the personal-attack flames.
Today we see how the media tries to re-write the history of political discourse, hoping the passage of time will dim memories and cover up their own culpability.