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Saturday Thoughts: Law and Order is only a Superficial Badge for today’s Republican Party
They are only about law and order when it means pushing fear about impoverished and systemically disenfranchised communities of color.
Recent events warrant an examination of how Republicans use “law and order” to demagouge their voters with tribalistic fear rather than addressing or discussing the root causes of crime and poverty.
For years, this GOP demagogued law and order as Stuart Stevens (who was in the belly of the beast) points out:
For years, this GOP used fear of overcrowded and impoverished cities stripped of tax bases by the ever-present move to the suburbs by middle class Americans.
The Republicans, for the most part, did not want to have substantive conversations around this very complex migration of moderate to high-income earners and the lapse of commercial/public investment it causes. Instead, elected officials, loyal base voters, and their media ecosystem played into old American tropes that suggest Americans of color were more likely to be violent and unhygienic. Or, another old trope that impoverished people in general did not work hard enough in the game of life.
But in 2016, a demagogue named Donald Trump was elected to be commander-in-chief with the approval of the Reagan Republican Party. They ignored his vile tweets, his racist rhetoric, and his antidemocratic threats:
They made Faustian bargains for radical judges that want to strip reproductive rights from American women.
So when it comes out that this GOP president flagrantly breaks the law and took top secret documents (that he had no real reason to keep), the GOP is either silent or covering for Trump’s lawlessness:
(I’ll let one use their own imagination regarding what Trump would do with government secrets after staging a coup).
Now, the GOP wants to undermine the FBI only because they have built a castle of lies for their base and other politically illiterate Americans.
They are desperately trying to keep this ediface erect.
Fox News wants to undermine an investigation into a blatantly lawless president because it is their political team, they are complicit in messaging for Trump’s American carnage, and they have shamelessly built fortunes on half-truths and fabrications meant to fearmonger Americans in a tribal manner.
It is a shame what is happening today.
Yet, this is the legacy of a Republican Party that once (and still does) demagouged middle class and lower-income White Americans into voting for the party of the landed elite over the more populist unit by appealing to racial fear and culturally supremacist inclinations.
The chickens have been coming home to roost for years now.
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