We are living in dangerous times now in America. We have a government who is willing to separate children from their families. To keep those crying and distraught children passive, the government is even willing to administer powerful antipsychotics to these children to keep them docile and more manageable. Heaven forbid they hire childcare workers for these children to make things as humane as possible given the circumstances. Instead, we are giving drugs to children that are typically given to people with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Think about that for a second.
What’s perhaps more distressing is that a lot of individuals just don’t seem to care about the fact that our country is committing these atrocities. Millions of people appear content to go about their daily lives and keep their heads in the sand, pretending none of this is happening. How could the country that they grew up in and love do such things? They cry fake news because they refuse to believe it. For many, what is going on in this country is anything but fake; it’s very real. People of color and LGBT individuals are actively thinking about leaving the country.
Are these people being alarmist, paranoid, or being snowflakes? Hardly. According to individuals who study genocide, there are eight stages. Many believe we are already in the sixth stage. Genocide Watch describes the sixth stage as:
Victims are identified and separated out because of their ethnic or religious identity. Death lists are drawn up. Members of victim groups are forced to wear identifying symbols. Their property is expropriated. They are often segregated into ghettoes, deported into concentration camps, or confined to a famine-struck region and starved. At this stage, a Genocide Emergency must be declared. If the political will of the great powers, regional alliances, or the U.N. Security Council can be mobilized, armed international intervention should be prepared, or heavy assistance provided to the victim group to prepare for its self-defense. Otherwise, at least humanitarian assistance should be organized by the U.N. and private relief groups for the inevitable tide of refugees to come.
These days, I have been thinking about Tiananmen Square a lot. I feel it is a significant event because the Chinese government used lethal force to suppress dissent. I wonder how far away we are from doing so in our own country. We have already begun the process of vilifying those who disagree with the dominant White narrative. Colin Kaepernick is still unemployed and the Department of Justice is actively investigating “Black Identity Extremists.” How long will it be before the Trump administration begins mass murdering Latinx individuals and telling everyone it was because they were part of MS-13? How many White Americans would be content with such an explanation? When lethal force is used to suppress dissent so publicly, we are at a point of no return. If we get to that stage, the government can only be removed by force. We cannot let that happen in this country.
For us to save democracy, we need to get our act together as a country. We need people to stop being apathetic. We need White individuals to stop living in their white privilege. If we are to resist fascism, we need individuals to not be content to go about their daily lives as usual. This is particularly true for White individuals for a number of reasons. Many of them would be the last to be targeted by the fascist state; they would be the last to have their freedoms taken away. Currently, many White individuals quite frankly, don’t seem to care about what happens to the rest of us. Fox News aired a segment today where they said literally “like it or not, these aren’t our kids, show them compassion, but it’s not like he’s doing this to the people of Idaho or Texas.”
The responsibility is also on White individuals because they are primarily the individuals still supporting Trump. We would not have Trump without White America. A majority of White Americans, both men and women, voted for Trump. That can’t be said about any other racial/ethnic group. The fact of the matter is, democracy cannot be saved unless millions of White people fight against White privilege. Democracy will not be saved unless millions of White Americans start caring about what happens to people who are not like them. They need to start caring about what happens to Black Americans, Latinx Americans, LGBT Americans, Asian Americans, disabled Americans, Muslim Americans, and more. Trust me White Americans, you need to do this as well. If the rest of us are gone, who will fight for you when the fascist state comes after your freedom?
At this rate, I don’t know if we can wait until the midterms or 2020 to vote out this fascist regime. Furthermore, I honestly believe that voting is not enough. We must dismantle the factors that created Trump in the first place. Conservatives are right, undocumented people and asylum seekers were not treated fairly under Obama as well. Obama wasn’t perfect. People of color, LGBT Americans, Women, and Muslims were all persecuted under his watch. We cannot be content to return to a time when the persecution of non-White individuals was less obvious. We need more White people like Cynthia Nixon (she’s running for governor in New York) who are willing to call for the abolishment of ICE and label it a terrorist organization. She has removed her White lens and taken things from the perspective of Latinx individuals. She recognizes that although ICE does not target her or people who look like her, it is targeting others, and that, she will not abide.
I want to have hope in White people, but they’ve let me down so many times in the past. I’m trying so hard to have hope; I want to believe that White people are better than this. White Americans, now is the time for you to define your narrative; begin to rewrite what it means to be White. Do you want Whiteness to continue to be something abhorrent in this country? Fine, do nothing. If you want to be respected and accepted by people of color, fight for us now as if it was your lives on the line.