Guerrillas in the Midst

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If you’ve taken a look at the political climate lately, you know it’s uglier than Rosie O’Donnell’s leaked nudes. We’ve gotten to the point where expressing an opposing opinion on any topic can be a dangerous proposition with what political opponents are advocating and/or condoning. We’re not talking about tearing down yard signs or TPing a house. We’re talking doxing, death threats, and even physical violence. Put another way, we’ve entered the period of guerrilla politics.

To be fair, politics isn’t a subject for the weak at heart, but in the past there was always an underlying assumption the two sides only wanted the best for the country, just differed on the way to get there, and could respect the other side’s position even if it countered their own. It’s safe to say that assumption is no longer in play, as political operatives are more concerned with otherizing their opponents than finding common ground.

Although both sides participate in guerrilla politics from time to time, the Left has mastered it. Take Joaquin Castro’s recent decision to post the names and workplaces of businessowners who donated to President Donald Trump on Twitter. Yes, this information was public knowledge as required by election law, but Castro’s purpose for posting it had only a little do to with informing the public of where businessowners stood on the President. The intent was to call out these people for “supporting a racist” (in Castro’s opinion) and trying to shame these people into rethinking their support.

After a few death threats, cases of mistaken identity, and bad news coverage, Castro’s idea backfired on him, making him look like he deserved to be one of the back of the pack contenders for the 2020 Democrat nomination for President. Good thing for him he was already there or it might have been even more embarrassing. Even though the information is public, it was combined with an unspoken accusation: the people and businesses on this list are racists because they support Donald Trump, who is a racist. If the Left would have stopped with a boycott of these establishments, that’s one thing, but it didn’t stop there. The minute death threats started to be uttered, the minute the employees of these establishments started fearing for their lives, that’s when it went from being acceptable to unacceptable behavior.

Of course, try telling Castro and the Left that. They are all about “name and shame” when it comes to Trump supporters. Of course, when it’s Antifa, name and shame goes the way of Castro’s chances of seeing the inside of the White House on anything but a guided tour. As much of a double standard this appears to be, it’s not quite one because being a Trump supporter in and of itself isn’t illegal, but assault is. But if the Left gets their way, being a Trump supporter would be grounds for expulsion from society. And soon, their sights may be on anyone else who disagrees with them, all in the name of ideological purity.

This kind of thinking is folly at best, dangerous at worse. The natural instinct is to give as good as we receive, but that’s not going to work here. In its current state, the Left is wiling to do anything to ruin people who don’t tow the line. If they can’t intimidate you emotionally, they’ll do it physically. They are acting out of pure emotion, which means they may not respond to reason. That limits what we can do in response. If we push back, it escalates the situation and forces the Left to push back harder. If we don’t say or do anything, the Left wins by default and they continue to run roughshod. There has to be something in between these two undesirable results.

And there is, but it will require a little bit of strategic thinking. Comedian Dennis Miller came up with a solution in 2014: keep your politics close to your vest, especially these days. Don’t engage the Left, don’t stick your neck out in political discussions unless you’re ready to deal with the worst possible responses, and think about what you say and do on social media, in public, and in private discussions. But there are two things you can do that will strike a blow for freedom.

Vote, and encourage others to vote.

Until the Left figures out how to spy on how you vote (and don’t take this as a challenge, Leftists), you still retain the privacy at the polling place. When it’s you and your ballot, you still have the power to think for yourselves and act in whatever way you feel will make the country better. Even if you don’t agree with Trump, this constant bullying by the Left won’t get better until they realize the power they think they hold is through force and not persuasion or reason. They are motivated by greed, hatred, envy, and any number of other negative emotions that will lead either to another not-so-civil war or to them eventually burning themselves out. The former will be a bloody end that will not be a happy ending for this country. The latter is the long game, but it is the one that will ensure we can still hold onto the tatters our country has become and maybe, just maybe, we can mend it.

Author: Thomas

I'm a small town boy living in the heart of Iowa watching the world go by with my wife and dog.