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View From Here: Voting Rights Must Pass!

By David Mark Greaves

While we can always find much to be thankful for, there is a palpable sense of dread about the direction of the country during this supposedly festive holiday season.  Mainstream media is suddenly very aware that the Republicans are not just another political party, but an authoritarian regime forming before our eyes, like a science fiction villain, that will determine the direction of the country for decades to come.  And the level of mass protests necessary to change the course they will set us on will be indistinguishable from war.

The white nationalist, supremacists, however you call them, are determined to take over the country. They’ve been saying they want to “take our country back” and now they’re doing it as a decentralized domestic terrorist organization using Donald Trump as the Great Leader.  Their political arm is engineering the takeover of the House by gerrymandering Democratic seats out of existence, and their local cells are installing operatives in bureaucratic positions to overturn votes and mount fear campaigns against all who oppose them.  

On January 6th, we saw them flex the troops “on the ground,” ready to respond on command. And now their militias have Kyle Rittenhouse, walking free after using an assault rifle to kill two and wound a third, as an example that allows people with assault rifles to “monitor” protestors.  Protestors who would know that at any moment the person with the assault rifle could “feel threatened” and opens fire in “self-defense.”

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Mark Meadows, Trump’s former chief of staff, said if the Republicans take over the House as expected, they should install Trump as House Speaker, as the Speaker does not have to be a member of that body. This is recipe for the takeover of the country and it’s happening in our time. The United States that we knew will be no more.

Look at the leaders that Trump admires, Vladimir Putin, Russia; Kim Jong Un, North Korea; Rodrigo Duterte, Philippines; Xi Jinping, China; Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey, and others. He likes the way they get to run things. Without interference by the public, political parties, or the media.  History will be adding the United States of America to this list if we don’t act.

And do not underestimate the cruelty of which his followers are capable. You need only look at what their preceding generations were doing while worshiping Christianity during slavery, Reconstruction and Jim Crow. These are the descendants of those who had power in the Golden Age of White Supremacy before 1865 and the Silver years after that.  

And for those who think that’s going too far, remember Trump separated families and put the children in cages. And what of the images of Haitian migrants at the southern border, being chased by men on horseback with whips? Would they be abhorred or cheered by a Trump administration?

Passage of H.R.4 – the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2021, is essential to the survival of the country as the democracy we’ve known. Because if not, we will be ruled by a cruel and vengeful master, and this time, it won’t be just Black folks in chains.

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