Fascism in America: Part 3: The Day After

When I was a boy and I would see scary things on the news, my mother would say to me, look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping. — Mr. Rogers

The day after tomorrow is unwritten. It doesn’t exist. It’s a fictional place and time, where anything — anything — is possible. We manifest it, collectively, with what we do, right now, in this moment, and every moment thereafter. There is hope. Always. Forever.

In this series, I tried to logically lay out where we are now and where it is likely to lead us: not as a certainty, but as a warning. My father taught me: “Never describe a problem unless you also have a solution.” My goal was always to bridge the gap between those two. We have legitimate reasons to be deeply concerned, but we have just as much reason to be hopeful. The day after: it doesn’t exist yet.

So where do we go from here?  How do we prevent this dystopian future? We start by accepting whatever we do, we will struggle to do it. Know this is a marathon, not a sprint, and that none of this is worth it if we stop living. Care for yourself and for one another. If it frightens you, put it out of your mind. If it angers you, use it. Become a master of your emotions: focus on the goal, and push.

If this series teaches you anything, let it be that the Republicans no longer exist as you once knew them. Donald was not a mistake. Even now, I see people expressing the sentiment that eventually the Republicans must come around. Those that would, will be pushed out. Our hope rest with the Democrats, who in large part express a similar sentiment: “Our institutions will save us, have faith in them.”

I won’t speculate why that is. Perhaps they believe it. Perhaps they’re afraid. Perhaps they don’t want to stoke fear. Who knows why? It’s our job, right now, to convince them otherwise. Our institutions are not saving us. They must be brave for us. They must be honest. We must demand much from them right now. They are our last line of defense. We need them to magnify our voices and help them to spread.

We need a peaceful movement in this country, similar to the likes of South Korea and Romania. Millions of people, protesting often. In any other country, we might not need their voices. But Americans are not used to this. Too many are still sleep-walking through life. The longer they do so, the more likely this country is transformed into a pseudo-democracy, where fascism and theocracy become the norm.

And so we must appeal to the Democrats. Share our fears with them. Plead with them. Insist, perhaps unreasonably, they do much more. We need to see them on every news broadcast, in every local paper, speaking truth to power, warning us of the dangers around the corner. We need to see our senators with a bullhorn in front of the Capitol and our representatives doing the same in all of their districts.

Donald Trump has dominated the conversation long enough. It’s time to drown out his petty, little voice and push his distractions aside.

Make your voices heard. Write your own op-eds. Join an @IndivisibleTeam. Remain active locally. Reach out to your state legislatures. Contact your mayors, your governors, your state and federal agencies in any matters related to them.

In all of this, demand they speak.

The only noise we hear now is to distract us while our rights are stripped away so we cannot use our voices when they are most needed. We need to use our voices to convince others to use theirs: especially those in power. We do this because it serves a needed purpose. They amplify our voices. They add new voices to the chorus. And eventually, hopefully sooner rather than later, we awaken our nation.

The outcome is uncertain. It would generate lots of activity in ways I can’t even begin to predict. But that is precisely the point. Americans are wonderful people. We have an indomitable spirit of goodness within us. We come together when it matters, when it counts. Drown out the voices of Donald Trump and this corrupt Republican Party. It’s time to take our country back, to make it great again.

I know we can do it. I do not doubt this at all. You should not either. Because we have something the opposition does not…

Helpers. They number in the tens of millions. And you are one of them.