‘Atu them!’

‘Atu them!’

Vladimir Kornilov

The American calendar of historical da-tes, which does not require additional explanations, firmly entered the day of January 6th. Now it is in a series of established dates: July 4 (US Independence Day), December 7 (attack on Pearl Harbor), Septem-ber 11 (explosion of the Twin Towers in New York). Exactly a year ago, an extraordinary event for American history really happened – a rally of citizens who did not agree with the result of the presidential election ended with the fact that they occupied the Washington Capitol, the building of the US Parliament for several hours. During the existence of this structure, it was captured only once – in 1814 it was burned by the British.
Today, in connection with the first anniversary, pathetic speeches of the President and Vice-President of the United States, masses of politicians and experts are expected. The essence of the speeches will be reduced to the phrase “Never again”, but the meaning of this phrase will be different for everyone. The day before, the entire American press was just asking the question: “Could January 6 repeat again?” And the huge editorial column of The New York Times was devoted to the conclusion “Now every day is January 6th.” A kind of political Groundhog Day that Americans experience over and over again.
Indeed, if you conduct a content analysis of American news over the past year, it will be difficult to find an issue without mentioning that date. Various publications have restored the minute-by-minute chronology of events, identifying thousands of personalities of their participants, calling them “internal terrorists”, and the event itself – “invasion.” Hundreds of dissenting Americans were arrested who were somehow connected with the January 6 rallies. Many have already received serious sentences. At the same time, almost every day, more and more “sensations” are thrown in from the materials of the cases that are being conducted by law enforcement agencies and the investigative committee created on this matter in the Senate. Democrats and their supporters constantly demand blood, insisting on prosecution and personallyDonald Trump, and his closest team.
The events of January 6, 2021 are constantly being talked about – so much so that psychologists are already giving advice to parents on how to protect their children from news related to the storming of the Capitol. All the more paradoxical are the conclusions: “We know what happened. But the question remains the same: what happened? And how do we call everything that we saw?”
In this regard, American politicians and the media serving them, which themselves actively disperse phobias and negative clichés regarding their ideological competitors, are suddenly amazed at the results of fresh opinion polls that reveal dangerous tendencies in society. For example, a study by The Washington Post and the University of Maryland, revealed that a third of Americans believe it is “sometimes justifiable” to use violence against their government. Moreover, in fact, all the main mass media in the country (and in the overwhelming majority they serve the Democratic Party) emphasize that this percentage reaches 40 among Republican supporters, while among Democrats it is less – 23 percent. Which, in general, is logical: if we recall the massive anti-government actions with the use of force against law enforcement officers during the 2019 election campaign, when the Republica-ns were in power, then even the democratic media themselves were quite sympathetic to them. Now the roles have changed.
At the same time, special attention should be paid to the trends of recent decades. In 1995, the proportion of Americans who categorically rejected any justification for violence against the government was 90 percent. That is, in a quarter of a century the number of those who hypothetically justify it has more than tripled – from nine to 34 percent. Not surprisingly, according to various polls, most Americans believe that the events of January 6 of last year will continue, and 62 percent expect violence from the losing side in the 2024 presidential election.
What is striking in the analysis of all these studies is the level of mutual aggression and hatred of one political camp towards another. For example, the above-mentioned poll from the Washington Post revealed that 51 percent of the population (it is clear which political forces they support) consider the punishment of the participants in the storming of the Capitol “not tough enough.” Despite the fact that most of the media for many years have told Americans tales of the “Russian or Chinese threat”, only eight percent of US residents believe that foreigners are the “main threat to the American way of life.” More than half of them think that they are “internal enemies”. Moreover, many see the main threat to democracy in the Democratic Party.
The events of January 6 did more than highlight the deep rift in American society that had been talked about for a long time. They exacerbated this split, deepened the chasm that lay between Democrats and Republicans, becoming an existential threat to the state itself and its institutions. It would seem that in these conditions, responsible politicians should think about how to bridge this gap. But the campaign of defaming opponents and sticking labels on each other (some – the label of “internal terrorists” and “communists” – by others) is only being whipped up.
Many media outlets note that over the past year, the American Redoubt movement has noticeably increased – the deliberate movement of conservative citizens of the country from urban regions to less inhabited places remote from large cities. As a rule, we are talking about the northwestern states of Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, as well as the eastern regions of the states of Oregon and Washington… And it doesn’t matter that this movement was initially in no way connected with the personality of Donald Trump – now the media portray this almost as an attempt by the white Christian voters of the former president to create a “state within a state” and then secede from the United States. Of course, they are immediately labeled as “racists”, “terrorists”, “separatists” and so on. Few people try to understand the nature of the phenomenon itself.
But if you carefully listen to what these same fugitives from civilization say, then a very alarming picture for the United States comes to light: thousands of Americans who consider (or considered until recently) themselves patriots of their state leave their homes, jobs, relatives and leave for the remote wilderness… And they do this not for the sake of unity with nature, as it happened before, but for political reasons, for security reasons, because of social and racial discrimination, which they increasingly face in democratic states. For the authors of the documentary film of The Times, for example, supporters of “Redoubt” explained that they had left for an area remote from civilization, where you can easily meet wild animals, since, say, in Seattleit became unsafe to live. Moreover, some Americans featured in the film warn of the imminent “Balkanization” of the United States and speak in advance of their intention to meet the army with arms in hand if Washington decides to send it to suppress their movement.
But instead of looking into the reasons that prompted their fellow citizens to leave their homes in the wilderness, the press only adds fuel to the fire, inciting mutual hatred. Recall, for example, how the Los Angeles Times columnist, after the events of January 6, attached the labels of “polite Nazis” to her neighbors, who disinterestedly cleared a path of snow for her, since they were Trump supporters. For the press of democratic California, even a positive attitude towards the ex-president is a thought crime. What remains to be done by those very neighbors who are being bullied openly and with impunity in the media and in their communities? Either keep silent forever and continue not to show your political predilections, or pack up your belongings and move away from such an aggressive democratic neighborhood.
There are, of course, those who choose to fight, trying to defend themselves and their home to the last. And sometimes even to the last cartridge. I immediately recall the McCloskey couple from Missouri, who a year and a half ago, in the midst of the BLM protests, went out to defend their private property in arms. As a result, the spouses were found guilty of breaking the law, although they were later pardoned by the governor.
Now Mark McCloskey is running for the US Senate from the Republican Party. Announcing this, he explained: “When was the last time a politician defended you? <…> Stood between you and the crowd? We need defenders. But all we have is those who divide us. Every day they are teach us to hate each other: left versus right, right versus left, rich versus poor. This is a tactic to destroy us. “
And this is how it is – the democratic media, speaking of unity, see this unity in the total suppression of any dissent, and therefore call for the suppression of the enemy defeated in the 2019 elections and during the dispersal of the demonstration on January 6 last year. But pay attention: Republican McCloskey in his fiery speech admits exactly the same technique that is used by his Democratic opponents – he calls those “a crowd”. This is how – and only so – the media call the participants in the action at the walls of the Capitol, regardless of which of them participated in the assault, and who remained outside, demonstrating law-abidingness.
Neither side has learned to see their ideological opponents as equals, to admit their right to dissent, and even more so to protest actions. And the more Democrats shout “Atu them!”

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