Letter: Silent conservatives need to speak out or death of democracy will be on you

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To The Editor:

This is not about Donald Trump.  It’s not even about the sad souls seduced by him.  The insurrectionists who stormed the Capital to prevent the peaceful transfer of power were primarily guilty of being gullible.  They fell for the big fraud.  They did not do the defrauding.  Many have been held accountable for their actions.  Most of the ones who fooled them have not.  Yet.

I refer to Republican Party leaders who cashed in their moral courage to ride a demagogue’s coattails to power.  They learned from their adored leader how to spew out coded calls to mob mentalities eager to vent their resentments.  I used to believe people had to be taught to hate.  Donald taught us you only have to invite people to hate.  Let them know it’s OK.  Normal.  Join the gang.  Have some fun.

Who would you like to hate?  It doesn’t have to be a race, religion, or immigration status.  People really want to hate “Elites.”  Who are elites?  Anyone who may know more than they do.  People want to feel like they know more science than scientists; feel more righteous than the devout.  What better leader could they have than one who tells them what they want to hear.  Someone who claims to “know more about the military than all the generals.”  That injecting bleach might cure Covid.  Forget evidence.  Forget knowledge.  Too time consuming.  Too boring.  All you have to do is what Donald does.  Just “feel” you’re right.  Personally, I’d rather lose with honesty than to win with lies.

They call themselves something they are not: “Conservatives.”  True Conservatives value character, civility, and intelligence.  Trump-pets reward arrogance, anger, and self-delusion.

“Alternative facts” is an oxymoron.  Except in the minds of those who can’t face an uncomfortable truth.  They’re just opinions masquerading as facts.  Using partial truths is not just a way to fool others.  It’s how we fool ourselves.  If you embrace Donald, you embrace his lies and self-delusions.  You become what he is: a fraud.  You’ll make excuses, find scapegoats, and rationalizations.  But in the end, you will be a mere follower of a pathetic, narcissistic bully.  I would rather be dead than that.

If you are one of those silent conservatives who still respect the Constitution, Democracy, and the rule of law, but allow yourself to be intimidated by Trump Trolls, the death of our democracy will be on you.

James Tweed,

Ocean City, NJ

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