Students Demand Action have called a national student walk out April 5. If you are in school or have a child in school, join them. If you are a teacher or know one, support them by walking out yourself or calling in sick.
One organizer said that if Tennessee lawmakers “actually cared about protecting kids” they would “address what kills kids every single day” instead of banning books and drag shows. Gun violence is the leading cause of death for U.S. children. But Florida just quietly legalized concealed carry for everyone without any permit or training.
The second amendment was originally written so that state militias could respond in defense of democracy if the government turned into a tyranny as England had done. Now the second amendment has been perverted to give individuals a right to guns so they can overthrow the government and create a tyranny.
The culture wars attacking CRT, LGBT, drag, and women’s reproductive autonomy are an excuse to use violence to destroy our democracy. These wars are being fought at the legislature but also on the street. Recently the Bridge, a small religious cult in Tucson supported by the Proud Boys, waged a campaign of intimidation against Bookmans because of a scheduled drag story hour. Because of the threat of violence to individuals, the story hour was cancelled.
A trans event in Washington, D.C. was cancelled last weekend due to threats of gun violence. The dog whistle was that the shooter at the religious Covenant School was allegedly trans. In the last 41 years, 98% of the mass shooters have been men. At least 51% were white with 10% unknown. But you never once heard the white supremacists crowd suggesting we keep guns away from white men.
But of course none of this – banning books, prohibiting language, refusing to teach about racism, prohibiting women and LGBT people from determining their own health care, or having people in costume (other than a clown) reading to kids – is about protecting children. The same legislature that banned abortion banned fetal medical care. The same legislature that bans books bans free lunch for hungry kids. Their goal is not to protect children but to control society and force us all into their dystopian view of the 1950s.
In response to this violence, our federal and state law enforcement look to the left rather than the right. During the 1960s when the left was protesting the Viet Nam war, the FBI instituted a decades long infiltration of social change organizations (COINTELPRO) ranging from the National Organization of Women to the National Lawyers Guild to Martin Luther King Jr. and SCLC. They found nothing of note. We know today they are doing the same; inserting agents into protests and creating the very violence they then blame us for.
I participated in many a protest since the 1960s. Some of them were against businesses like gun shops and pornography stores. But three things are different from the actions today by the white supremacist groups.
If members of our group decided to break the law i.e. do civil disobedience, we knew it was against the law and expected to be held accountable. Those threatening and using violence today have no respect for the law and believe they can violate it with impunity. They are often correct.
We took great effort not to harm individuals but only to target property. This group is just the opposite. Their aim is to harm individuals.
We protested actual events – the Viet Nam war, Jim Crow, beating women. The white supremacists are protesting lies – lies that they make up and then use as the backdrop for their manufactured outrage. Elementary and secondary public schools never taught CRT. Yet they seek to ban anti-racism curricula because of their own lie. Drag story hour never sexualized or groomed children. Priests, pastors, coaches, child beauty pageants, pornography does that quite well. Yet they use their own lie to threaten harm to others.
The federal authorities have known for decades where the threat is now as then – white supremacists’ groups then called the KKK and White Citizens Council, now called Proud Boys, Oath Keepers, 3Percenters, and various religious cults like The Bridge. But law enforcement continues to focus on the left. Anarchists, Black Lives Matter, and Students Demand Action are not threats to democracy – they are working to create and sustain it.
This is the second Civil War. By the use of street violence white supremacists intend to overthrow democracy as the Brown Shirts did in Germany. We must maintain our democratic principles while using the institutions of democracy. But we realize that some of those institutions of democracy are already thoroughly corrupted, and we have to battle that as well. We are all called to the ramparts. Join the student boycott April 5, support Bookmans, oppose our legislature.