This is the United States of America in 2022. A country where political violence — including the threat of political violence — has become a feature, not a bug.
Armed men wearing tactical gear and face coverings outside ballot drop boxes in Arizona. Members of Congress threatening to bring guns onto the House floor — or actually trying to do it. Prominent Republican members of Congress, and their supporters on Fox News, stoking violence against their political opponents by accusing them of being pedophiles, terrorists and groomers — of conspiring with “globalists” (read: Jews) to “replace” white people with immigrants.
And of course, January 6, and subsequent efforts by Republicans and conservative media personalities to whitewash or even celebrate it.
Pundits like to take refuge in the saccharine refrain, “this is not who we are,” but historically, this is exactly who we are. Political violence is an endemic feature of American political history. It was foundational to the overthrow of Reconstruction in the 1870s and the maintenance of Jim Crow for decades after.
Racism and other bigotries are as fundamental to American politics as most of the religions accepted as necessary to 19th Century character-building. An impediment to positive, progressive social growth.
One thought on “Political violence ain’t new to the GOUSA. As American as apple pie…or racism”
‘These are conditions ripe for political violence’: how close is the US to civil war? By Barbara F Walter, American political scientist and author of “How Civil Wars Start: And How to Stop Them” (Jan 2022 Viking) https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/nov/06/how-close-is-the-us-to-civil-war-barbara-f-walter-stephen-march-christopher-parker