Why do so many citizens live in fear of others different from themselves? They may rant about “freedom” and the evils of “cancel culture,” yet they cannot accept people who don’t share their religious views or skin color or sexual orientation. Their idea of freedom does not extend to a woman’s right to control her own body. Their idea of freedom does not extend to teaching actual history, as opposed to whitewashed American exceptionalism. Their objection to cancel culture does not extend to the Republican effort to cancel our democracy with its recent coup attempt.

Rep Andrew Clyde, a Georgia Republican, said the insurrection that wounded 120 Capitol Police officers resembled a “normal tourist visit.” It was the sort of desperate lie that seems common among the Grand Old Party, and those lies are fueling the mass psychosis threatening our country.

If Republicans thought they could win elections based on reasoned, fact-based debates, they would go that route. Instead, they resort to voter suppression, manipulating people’s emotions with hot-button propaganda, and lies, lies, lies. And, needless to say, questioning laissez-faire capitalism will be met with shrieks of “socialism!”

Which raises the question: if socialism is so inherently stupid, why do we need to constantly sabotage it in other countries by means of sanctions or worse? Won’t it just fail on its own? Why does every other developed country have single-payer health care? Why is there so much free college and child care elsewhere? Why do Scandinavian countries rank so high on happiness and so low on economic inequality? Here, the richest .1% own as much wealth as the bottom 90%, and medical bills are the main cause of bankruptcy.

Love may be blind, but patriotism must include a clear view of our faults, and a willingness to correct them.

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David A. Sorensen


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