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As I watch the growing chaos, I am beginning to conclude that progressives are making a big bet that the best way to lever President Trump out of the White House and seize power for themselves is to promote anarchy. They seem bent on achieving the two-way win: if they succeed — great; if they fail, they are simply creating evidence for their true believers that even more chaos is required.
I hope the NeverTrumpers now see what it is that they are aiding and abetting by making common cause with progressives in wishing that President Trump was not … well … President. No, I am not asking that NTs swear fealty to President Trump; I have not so sworn. But civil society requires that people abide by our public compact. And progressives have no desire to do so and are pleased to make law fit desires rather than make desires fit law.
I am not a conspiracy nut. I tend to think things happen based on opportunity. Progressives have been sowing discontent for decades because that gave them political power. Creating identities and division was the path. In the process they were able to cover their actions with Newspeak, making words mean the opposite of what they had always meant. So today “riot” means “protest” if it is for a progressive cause, and “protest” means “riot” if it is for any other cause.
From this toxic brew, discontents can flare, as they are doing now in Minneapolis and several other places, as they did in Ferguson, as they did in Detroit, as they did in LA. Bad things are going to happen, and when they do, it takes good faith and common decency to sort through it, assign responsibility, and make changes as required. But when an opportunity for progressive power is to be had, good faith and common decency become the enemy, not the pathway.
The danger here is not simply the property damaged, lives taken, or disrupted. It is the sense that problems can only be solved by central authority and not local resolutions. And that is the goal of this latest chaos: to promote violence that local and regional authorities cannot deal with, to promote a heavy federal hand. If the heavy federal hand does not come, progressives will claim that, just like with the pandemic, President Trump is not up to the job. If it does come, progressives will claim that their persistent labeling President Trump as an authoritarian was correct. Either way, according to progressives, President Trump must be removed. If this were just about President Trump, that would be all fine and good. But it isn’t.
I wish I knew what to do. I am glad it’s not my call. But “law and order” will come into fashion again, because the alternative is just not acceptable. The only question is who will be holding the reins. Pray it is not the progressives.