Keeping Equality Alive and Resisting Authoritarianism

Democratic principles

As we battle 2020 fatigue, the fight is as important as ever to resist normalizing white supremacist ideology and attacks on fundamental democratic principles.  Authoritarianism resists open discussion and facts.   It will take solidifying our values and building solidarity to overcome these forces.  I encourage you to stay involved on any level you find possible.  I am working on multiple levels of effort to help you do so.  Please share your thoughts on the electoral process in America and the status of democratic principles.

Keep Facts Relevant
In a world that appears bent on ignoring truths and history, my focus has been on maintaining the narrative of those who have been marginalized and empowering those who wish to hear so that they can manifest values that relate to inclusivity and fairness (among others). My continued communication and activity is based on this notion: We must keep talking so that the appalling behaviors we are witnessing are not normalized.

Don’t Take Democracy For Granted
Many of us are going through fatigue. We’re just tired. It’s been a relentless year. I hope to provide support, insight and inspiration for issues that I believe are fundamental to our living with purpose, compassion and self-efficacy. I believe that this is essential more than ever given the authoritarian tendencies that are emerging with frightening speed. (Dozens of experts on authoritarianism, fascism and populism signed an Open Letter of Concern warning about the imminent threat to democratic processes and institutions and calling for the action of ‘ordinary’ people).

Seventy million people voted for Trump. That’s an awful lot of support for someone who continues to golf while people are dying from Covid-19 in alarming numbers. Someone who cannot tolerate or conceive of people voting for his opponent. They simply don’t matter.

Tolerating Difference
Sometimes when I write on matters such as this, I receive responses that I am biased.  Yes I am.  I favor equality, fairness and decency and am unapologetic about this.  Sometimes people think that healing divisiveness is about suppression.  This often leads to tone policing and politeness politics.  Suppressing discussion of opposing viewpoints is classic play from the authoritarian playbook.  You don’t need to suppress your identity to tolerate another or be respectful.  Biden’s response to Trump’s decision not to facilitate peaceful transition of his administration is an example of restraint.  He called the conduct “an embarrassment” without descending into vitriol or personal attacks.  This doesn’t mean that we have to hash out all of our opinions with someone who is not in agreement.  We don’t have to be provocative.  Appeasement and compliance are fawn behaviors and that is about suppressing our beliefs for another’s.  The need to dominate and silence opposing viewpoints is a sign of insecurity.  There are behavioral skills that enable us to better tolerate difference.  Stay tuned.

 

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