One of Donald Trump’s signature accomplishments as President (and beyond) is promote what everyone calls the Big Lie, a concept straight out of Hitler’s diaries. He managed to convince millions that our electoral system was riddled with fraud and corruption and that the results were invalid. He literally called into question the integrity of our democracy. Why did Trump do this? The easiest explanation is his hurt ego for losing. However, if Trump is smarter than we think he is, he helped purposely lay the groundwork for the voter suppression Republicans couldn’t wait to implement.
For all intents and purposes, I think we may call time of death of democracy in 2022. But if somehow Democrats are organized enough to vote in even larger numbers than in 2020 (and Republicans discouraged in significant numbers), we can hang on to a neutral area similar to the one we are in right now where neither democracy nor fascism has any way to move forward. There’s always the long odds situation where Democrats increase their hold upon Congress too. I won’t rule it out.
I don’t have a crystal ball, but 2024 might be where things really go haywire. It’s a virtual certainty that it will be another hotly contested election, and the Big Lie will still be very popular. And the worrisome thing is that it’s very popular with people who own guns. Millions of people:
America’s massive and mostly Republican gun-rights movement dovetails with a growing belief among many Republicans that the federal government is an illegitimate tyranny that must be overthrown by any means necessary. That combustible formula raises the threat of armed, large-scale attacks around the 2024 presidential election—attacks that could make the January 6 insurrection look like a toothless stunt by comparison. “The idea that people would take up arms against an American election has gone from completely farfetched to something we have to start planning for and preparing for,” says University of California, Los Angeles law professor Adam Winkler, an expert on gun policy and constitutional law.
Winkler also imparts another worrisome development, at the Supreme Court:
If the Supreme Court ruling, expected in mid-2022, on New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen establishes an unrestricted right to carry a gun anywhere in the country, bringing firearms to the Capitol in Washington, D.C. could be perfectly legal. Says Winkler: “The Supreme Court may be close to issuing the ruling that leads to the overthrow of the U.S. government.”
One is left to wonder if all the barely restricted access to guns was always a way to arm troops for a right wing revolution, insurrection, police action or a civil war. It isn’t the left who is gearing up. Maybe that’s a screwy idea, but if I can think of it, you can bet your ass that some fascist creep already has too.