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The Name Game Is Another Blow to Our Republic


That’s one more medallion to add to my string of honorable and not-so-honorable titles.

Semi-fascism is the label President Joe Biden slapped on Donald Trump’s MAGA philosophy in a late August speech. Supporters of Trump are now apparently enemies of the state who despise the Constitution. Which means that about half of American voters qualify as a goose-stepping gang of Nazis.

Writer Jeffrey Barg mocks the outraged conservative response to Biden’s label of semi-fascist in an article for The Philadelphia Inquirer, insisting that Republicans are “feigning the same outrage they mustered for Hilary Clinton’s ‘basket of deplorables’ and Barack Obama’s ‘clinging to guns and religion’ comments.”

Near the end of his essay, Barg delivered a remark that made me burst out laughing:

The word fascism has trended for days on Merriam-Wesbster.com, which defines it as ‘a political philosophy, movement, or regime … that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition.’ Sound like anyone you know?

Why, yes, Mr. Barg. It sounds exactly like someone I know. It sounds like Joe Biden.

With one exception.

No one would ever accuse Uncle Joe of exalting our nation. After less than two years in office, he and his administration, aided and abetted by Congressional leaders and federal agencies, have allowed millions of illegal immigrants into the country, rendered the economy a shambles, made a debacle of our nation’s retreat from Afghanistan, and severed the bonds of an already divided nation by their rhetoric and embrace of critical theory. They’ve increased federal regulations, demolished our fossil fuel industry, politicized federal law enforcement agencies, and suppressed information on social media.

Then came El Presidente’s Sept. 1st address on the soul of the nation in which he expanded on his earlier diatribe. I deliberately avoided watching this speech, figuring I’d catch the highlights in the morning. When I first saw the photo of him at Philadelphia’s Independence Hall flanked by two armed Marines, all set against a red backdrop that looked like the gateway to hell, I laughed, thinking some angry conservative had created a meme. But the photo, of course, was real, and so were Joe’s bitter words as he denounced Republicans and MAGA Americans as storm troopers bent on driving the country into dictatorship and servitude.


In a word, as semi-fascists.

In one way, however, Joe Biden’s rhetoric inspired me. I’ve long had difficulty finding an appropriate name that would describe the president and his supporters. Liberal doesn’t work anymore—I think leftists themselves long ago pitched that word into the trash can—and progressive, given our present economic ruin and cultural decay, is ludicrous. But if I’m to be a semi-fascist, then I think semi-Marxist would do nicely as a descriptive catchall for this crew.

Plug that name into the news, and you might come up with headlines like these: “Semi-Marxists in Congress Pass the Inflation Reduction Act,” “Semi-Marxist Vice-President Kamala Harris Delivers Another Word Salad at the Border,” and “Semi-Marxist President Joe Biden Again Denounces Semi-Fascist Americans.”

Enough of my buffoonery.

President Biden, his speech writers, and all those cheering on his radical rhetoric have overnight turned a gully of separation between Red- and Blue-State Americans into a canyon. Rather than reminding all Americans of their common heritage, of the beauty and truth of such documents as the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, and of the vital need to solve our problems as one people, his hate-driven words have instead magnified our divisions. A leader who labels half the citizens in our republic as “semi-fascists” no longer represents the American people.

This bombastic hysteria should appall all voters: Republicans, Democrats, and Independents. It is a call for civil war, perhaps not with guns and bullets, not yet anyway, but with ostracism and prejudice toward “the other.”

United we stand, divided we fall” dates back at least to the time of Greek storyteller Aesop. In 1858, Abraham Lincoln took this precept from the biblical book of Matthew and in a speech to the Illinois Republican State Convention declared, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”

The Biden administration along with its supporters, including some members of our mainstream press, seem more than willing to test the parameters of this ancient wisdom.

Image Credit: C-SPAN


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