Make no mistake, there is a LOT that the far right hates. Gay people, immigrants, education, history, the rights of women, anyone who does not look like them, the list goes on.
But what does this really boil down to? What is the deepest hatred of the far right? Equality.
Even Ted Cruz has equality as his main objections to the new budget proposal from the White House:
Biden’s budget is completely WOKE!
“Equity” was mentioned 63 times.
“Climate” 148 times.
“Environmental justice” 25 times.
“Transgender” 8 times.
“Intersex” 7 times. pic.twitter.com/ErrSIfpkcE
— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) March 10, 2023
Today’s attacks on American equity are thinly veiled. Passing laws to ban drag shows. Banning books that in any way mention homosexuality, black history, slavery or anything else not part of a puritanically myopic view of history. But at the end of the day, it is equality itself that is under relentless attack.
Heather Cox Richardson, writing with her usual incisive observation writes:
Once you give up the principle of equality, you have given up the whole game. You have admitted the principle that people are unequal, and that some people are better than others. Once you have replaced the principle of equality with the idea that humans are unequal, you have stamped your approval on the idea of rulers and subjects. At that point, all you can do is to hope that no one in power decides that you belong in the lesser group.
Indeed, attacks today from the far right show that they think lot of people should be considered “the lessor group.” To point this out as dangerous is a massive understatement. Starkly stated, it is a justification for genocide.
Hitler made Jews the lessor group. Radovan Karadžić made Bosnian Muslims and Croatians the lessor group, murdering tens of thousands. Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge declared educated people the lessor group and killed millions. The American West, Armenia, Rwanda. The list goes on.
And make no mistake, there are people who call themselves “American Patriots” that want to do the same here. We all saw what these “patriots” did on January 6th—in spite of Tucker Carlson’s ludicrous attempt to whitewash the violence and death of that event as a tourist excursion.
Recently there was an unusual obituary in the Guardian for a woman named Traute Lafrenz who passed away at the age of 103. Traute was a member of the White Rose, one of the most renowned anti-Hitler movements in Nazi Germany. Its most distinguished members, leaders Christoph Probst and Hans and Sophie Scholl, were beheaded for treason at the Stadelheim prison in Bavaria in 1943. She somehow escaped the fate that overtook her compatriots. Her “crime” was distributing pamphlets that used quotes from German philosophers to call out the mass murder of Jews as the atrocity that it was.
Traute Lafrenz stood up against a murderous regime at a time when it could have meant her life to do so.
Meanwhile back in present day, at the recent far-right CPAC meeting, commentator Michael Knowles said that “for the good of society…transgenderism must be eradicated from public life entirely—the whole preposterous ideology, at every level.”
Again, from Heather Cox Richardson, “Make no mistake: this attack on transgender people represents a deadly attack on the fundamental principle of American democracy, the idea that all people are created equal.”
How do we counter this constant drumbeat of hatred? We take the example of Traute Lafrenz, and others like her, and speak out. Remember that our ability to so is unfettered because of our unique Constitution and its First Amendment—which the far right ironically invokes to protect their hateful rants.
We need to confront and call out the far right’s march toward genocide for what it is, relentlessly. We need to counter their ploys designed to invite the hatred they fervently desire that others adopt.
It is not easy to confront evil. But it has to be done because the consequences of not doing so are far, far more dire and deadly. This is not an opinion. This is a historically demonstrated fact. And it is one of the reasons the far right hates history lessons almost as much as it hates equality.
Marty Kassowitz is co-founder of Factkeepers. As founder of Interest Factory and View360, he brings more than 30 years experience in effective online communications, social media management, and platform development to the site. He is a writer, designer, editor and long time observer of the ill-logic demonstrated by too many members of the species known as Mankind. After a long history of somewhat private commentary on a subject he totally hates: politics, Marty was encouraged to build this site and put up his own analyses as well as curate relevant content from other sources.