We liberals are doing far worse than destroying our shoes

I keep seeing liberals mocking some conservatives for destroying or discarding their Nike branded merchandise due to Nike’s Colin Kaepernick ad campaign. Destroying something you paid for doesn’t harm Nike in any way. Only your future purchases make a difference.

But it’s symbolic. Wearing a brand in times of controversy is often an act of defiance when you agree with them. Shunning the brand is the same way when you disagree with them. It doesn’t make sense economically, but it makes sense emotionally.

Liberals, on the other hand, seem to be shunning guns in defiance of fascism. I suspect because I see either real or imagined connections between the two topics. Some, but not all of the shootings were done by right-wing individuals. The rest were left wing.

Some of the shootings weren’t political in nature, and their leanings really don’t factor in. They might correlate in some way.

They did have something in common though. They were sure enough of their beliefs that they were willing to cross any line, up to and including murder. Conservative, liberal, fascist, communist, but mostly just a self-centered asshole.

I’m not saying all people in those groups are like that. I’m saying that they’re definitely in there. On all sides. Our society creates them in all droves.

Trump is an extreme example. Most people are just unwilling to accept that they may be wrong. Their mind just shifts past the piece of evidence that doesn’t make sense. Even when you point it out repeatedly. It is an accepted core value. You don’t question those or your sense of truth crumbles. Learning to push past that fear is surprisingly hard to do, but worth it.

So, Trump is more extreme. But is he fascist?

Here’s what some experts said in 2015.

I asked 5 fascism experts whether Donald Trump is a fascist. Here’s what they said.

Is Donald Trump a fascist? It’s becoming a common question, with figures like neoconservative columnist Robert Kagan… www.vox.com

I’m currently reading Anatomy of Fascism by Robert Paxton. It has been enlightening. In that article he said:

Trump definitely attacks the current government as “weak,” which Paxton says might be termed a “borrowing” from fascism. But it’s a far cry from the outright support for ending democracy that characterizes true fascists.

In American Duce in the May 2017 issue of Harper’s magazine, he provided a more detailed statement where he differentiates between Trump and his regime.

The second strand of the Trump regime is those Americans who were repelled by the cultural experiments of the 1960s. The inhabitants of deep America who are offended by feminism, abortion, gay rights, and racial integration are often the same as those left behind by Obama’s technology-driven economic revival. Trump’s electoral campaign appealed successfully to the bitterness of this unskilled white working class, which feels itself both economically and culturally besieged.

Here, arguably, there is some overlap between Trump and the fascists. The Nazis, too, denounced the social and cultural experiments of Weimar. The surge in racism under Obama also recalls the gathering of French antirepublican forces in 1936. Much of this opposition was aimed at the Popular Front of Léon Blum, the first socialist and first Jew to become prime minister. In a sense, Obama was an American Léon Blum, elected in euphoria and then hamstrung by adamant domestic opposition.

Compare that to his description of Trump himself:

The third strand is Trump himself, holding the whole system together at the top. Donald Trump is an opportunist concerned exclusively with his own celebrity and wealth. He acts on any momentary impulse that seems to favor those ends. He is an authoritarian personality devoid of any commitment to the rule of law, political tradition, or even ideology. He has given his officials an implicit green light to act arbitrarily, as the eminent French historian Henry Rousso learned when he was detained at the Houston airport in February and almost deported.

His assessment of Trump matches what I have seen as well. His argument about that segment of Trump’s regime makes sense to me, but more importantly, I trust his experience as an expert on Fascism to make that assessment.

It is clear to me that there is a force that resembles fascism gaining power within our country. They like guns and they like Trump, and some of us are threatening their second amendment rights while planning on removing their Democratically elected President.

Even the people I typically agree with regularly conflate our problems with Trump’s ideology with our problems with Trump’s methods. Cutting taxes for the rich is an ideology I disagree with. Manipulating the rules of government to implement changes in policy is unacceptable for any reason.

I understand the impulse to want to remove guns from our country. If we could remove all the guns, there would be no gun violence. But how can we disarm when facing this form of threat? They’re not going to willingly disarm, and our attempts to force them to disarm is violating their constitutional rights, providing them with enough justification to ignore their own form of oppression.