The “Spirit” of America?

Roaches and Roaches

When the summer nights are hot and it's dark in the south, the roaches crawl out of the cracks. I remember one time walking outside without a light and hearing the crunch of the roaches under my feet as I walked across the side of the yard.

It seems that when it gets dark and hot morally in this country, the roaches begin to come out. We have an idiot child for a leader who openly proclaims racist and sexist beliefs and supports those who are racist and sexist. Why would anyone be surprised at the results?

If we have any leaders who have moral courage, where are they? Will he not stand up against this Nazi wannabe? We are going down the same path that Germany went down with Hitler yet no one seems to care or seems to believe it anyway. Here is an earlier analogy.

A Slow Death

While in college, we had a black widow spider in a gallon glass jar on our desk. We would feed her crickets and one day, we decided to watch as the spider ate her meal.

Much to our surprise, and unexpectedly, the widow came slowly from the top of the jar down to the cricket, tossed a silk lasso around one of its legs. The cricket did not move, unaware of the impending danger. She repeated this process until the cricket was nothing more than a silk cocoon. She then slowly hoisted it to the top of the jar, where she drained it of all its fluids, leaving a dried-up shell.

A Shell of a Country

Since the founding of the United States, politicians and pundits have warned that partisanship is a danger to democracy. George Washington, in his Farewell Address, worried that political parties, or factions, could "allow cunning, ambitious and unprincipled men" to rise to power and subvert democracy. More recently, many political observers are concerned that increasing political polarization on left and right makes compromise impossible, and leads to the destruction of democratic norms and institutions.

  • A new study, however, suggests that the main threat to our democracy may not be the hardening of political ideology, but rather the hardening of one particular political ideology. Political scientists Steven V. Miller of Clemson and Nicholas T. Davis of Texas A&M have released a working paper titled "White Outgroup Intolerance and Declining Support for American Democracy." Their study finds a correlation between white American's intolerance, and support for authoritarian rule. In other words, when intolerant white people fear democracy may benefit marginalized people, they abandon their commitment to democracy.* --Noah Berlatsky

Are we the crickets?

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