Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.
There is a sense of dread spreading that America is mired in political quicksand. And, as contemporary events have unfolded, many people who have fought to make this country great feel we’re slowly sinking. Literally, the future of America is at stake. And that’s not hyperbole.
The nation is no longer what it used to be, its greatness diluted by people infected by identity politics and an ignorance of history. Forces are on the move that hate the America that has been built by the blood and smarts of millions before us. The immense success story that was started 230 years ago by some very talented people is now threatened by the “progressive” left, infiltrating the national culture with political correctness, socialist thinking, policies that don’t work and the ostracism of cancel culture.
But if anything should be “cancelled”, let’s dump the progressive movement on the trash heap. “Progressives” chose their name over 100 years ago, because it makes others think they’re for progress and change. But not all change is progress.
Like much in politics that starts well but ends badly, some of the targets in the early years of progressivism at the time were worthy.
However, similar to communism, other darker activist movements highjacked this reform effort and turned it into a means to acquire and keep political power. Sounded good on the surface, giving hope to the underserved, but underneath the flowery rhetoric and promises it was like putting lipstick on a pig.
Progressives held themselves out as avid “modernizers”, claiming they would solve society’s injustices and flaws. They declared they could improve the conditions of human life and maintained they had an “obligation to intervene”. In other words, in blatant condescension, they foisted the notion that “the people” needed a nanny and wealth redistribution, and that progressive leaders could run the lives of citizens better than the people themselves.
But this approach required dividing the citizens into classes and castes, where a “ruling” class makes the decisions over all other classes, eliminating many individual decisions. And, in the process, taking away the liberty and freedom of individuals to determine their own course in life. Any rights we have come from the government, they said. What also happened is that the progressivism of those days abandoned personal responsibility and became a cancer on society, growing from within. It eats our Constitution.
This process has always been the first step of totalitarian governments—to rob the power of individual citizens, centralize that power to the relatively small ruling class to dictate how the people will live their lives; to subjugate the will of the people and to use the overarching power of government “for their own good” to force the new totalitarian system into place. Such governments insist on unbridled power and a reconstructed society to keep you in line and to impose what it thinks is “best” for you.
Progressive tactics also have frequently included deliberate breaches of the rule of law, including violent demonstrations, property damage, car bombings, felonious assault, and elections cheating. Committing such violence, as we saw over the last two years, is considered acceptable if it advanced progressive goals. That’s why several thousand riots and violent demonstrations were permitted in our nation’s cities, with very few perpetrators facing justice.
At the same time, most progressives ridiculed the concept of “family”, as in “nuclear family”, because it is a threat to loyalty to the state. As a result, 40% of births in the U.S. are to unmarried mothers; and among blacks, its 72%. That’s OK to the diehard progressive because it means such mothers are obliged to rely on the state for money and sustenance. At the same time, the nation was subjected to a progressive educational elite which implored students to give up the values of their parents.
So that’s what we face. We are past the point where the interests of government are not aligned with the people. Everyone has their own ideas for how to correct our national problem. But the first step is to recognize the looming progressive disaster. We have to slow down government ascension. We must demolish the nanny state. We have to dis-elect progressives.
What are you going to do to help America escape the quicksand?