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What We as a People Must Do About Anarchy

This is the last of my posts inspired by Adrienne La France’s article The New Anarchy published in the Atlantic. Today we will consider what we must do as a nation. You may have noticed that I have not mentioned Trump yet. Let’s do that now and get it over with. La France has this to say: Political violence in America unfolds with little organized guidance and is fed by a mishmash of extremist right-wing views. It predates the emergence of Donald Trump but Trump served as an accelerant. Trump made tolerance of political violence a defining trait of his party. No commentary is necessary. In periods of decivilization, ordinary people fail to find common ground with one another and lose faith in institutions and elected leaders. We are a very diverse population. In my opinion, we have benefitted from our diversity. To a large extent we have incorporated the strengths of divergent immigrant populations and forged a new culture of our own. Yet there are still people from various races and beliefs some of us have trouble incorporating despite our best efforts. There are no simple or easy ways to respond to political violence. LaFrance suggests developments which might lead to less violence:
  1. Holding perpetrators to account is critical.
  2. Improved economy.
  3. People getting tired of living in terror.
  4. Facing down those who use the language of democracy. to weaken our democratic system.
  5. Rebuking the conspiracy theorist who uses the rhetoric of truth-seeking to obscure what is real.
  6. Unmasking the terrorist who claims to love freedom.
These are a few of the specific developments we can bring about which will give us a healthier society and weaken the power of false promises made by those who propose violence in society. The reality is that violence is a way to crumble democracy or to gain revenge by those who seek power for their own ends and try to trample anyone who gets in their way. There is much more in this article about the challenges and opportunities awaiting a society coming together for our mutual benefit. LaFrance points out that this is not an easy process and will take generations to fully incorporate. We have met many challenges since the founding of our country but we still have more challenges awaiting us. I highly recommend this article to all who hope for resolution to our troubled times.