It’s a very sad commentary on a very different world. When leaders appeal to the basest aspects of our nature, encouraging us to let loose the hounds of hell we thought we’d tamed, it forces us to choose. Do we believe that resistance is vital or that resistance is futile?
Resistance created this country, but it also has threatened its survival (the Civil War, the labor union movement, McCarthyism, the Vietnam War, and now terrorism — home-grown and foreign). I’d like to think that there are enough people left who want to fight for the greatest good for the greatest number. But maybe Mark Twain and Will Rogers were right.
Twain said, “It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there’s no native American criminal class except Congress,” while Rogers observed that “We have the best Congress money can buy.” Yet if our representatives don’t provide a bulwark against truly un-American activities, we may have to adapt Hamlet’s counsel and take up arms against a sea of troubles and, by opposing, end them.