The Republican Party at this point does not exist. There is a point where common decency says you step in and stop something that seems out of control. You have the knowledge and foresight to think through the critical process and realize you are inflaming a cause that you will not be able to control.
There is a psychological theory called “herd mentality” where at the encouragement of others, a group can get swept up in action and do things they would normally not engage in, simply because the push of others around them leads them to think it is the expectation.
In 2020, Andy Borowitz wrote a piece as satire speaking about Republican herd mentality:
Researchers at the University of Minnesota believe that Republican members of Congress have obtained “extremely high” levels of herd mentality, a new study shows.
According to the study, the researchers found that, in obtaining herd mentality, the G.O.P. lawmakers have developed “near-total immunity” to damning books, news reports, and audio tapes.
That was September 2020, and it dealt with officeholders, not just the potential candidates of the future. In almost every way imaginable, the Republican leadership have become enablers of the worst of all possible theories. State after state, proposals have hit statehouses to remove books, to ban policies, to hit the environment or to promote false science.
Ten years ago, I would tell you that there are Republicans who do these things out of fear of their own base. Whether they believe it or not, they are committed to get elected so they pay lip service to some issues for votes. I’ve personally known of cases where this was absolutely true. Today, though, the situation is very different. Elected Republicans are actively enabling this kind of attitude and pushing it to their voters.
We talk a lot about what is said on Twitter, at school board meetings, and even in now Nazi rallies on highways in Florida.
Let me assure you, with the pushing and the attitude of Donald J. Trump, and the newly found, empowered attitude that screams “we don’t care” from the Republican base, you can nearly guarantee what is said in private spaces where there is no fear of getting caught is growing more and more egregious every day.
I sometimes wonder if social media is the downfall of society. Don’t get me wrong—I believe every day that the long arc of history tilts toward justice. The more and more radicals who are able to find those who will reinforce their beliefs online, no matter how out of control, the harder it is to bring people back to reality.
No, Republicans do not have the excuse of mental illness. They are not intellectually impaired or intellectually divergent. I will not use slurs in my attacks on them. They have made an active choice. They have chosen to be radicals. They have made decisions in their lives as to who they associate with every day and how they share their beliefs. They have chosen at every step to indoctrinate others.
For Republicans avowing how much they love God, they own what they are creating. I remind them of these notes:
- Jesus Christ said: “Love each other as I have loved you.”
- Buddha said: “In the end, only three things matter: how much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you.”
- Muhammad said: “Be kind, for whenever kindness becomes part of something, it beautifies it. Whenever it is taken from something, it leaves it tarnished.”
Watching what Republicans are busy doing to America and their own belief systems right now? They are enablers. Every one of them.