It is clear we are on the verge of authoritarianism that might well find us at the mercy of a vocal minority that has no problem with suppressing liberties and honest discussions.
Our country as we have known it might be disappearing.
It can happen all too easily. After all, it has occurred over and over on the world stage. Recently, Naziism became known to some of us, and Putin is becoming known to all of us.
So what can we do? We can try to stop this plunge. Given our history, we naturally think we can vote the rascals out. I still cling to that hope, but with ever increasing voting restrictions, the proliferation of guns in the hands of democracy deniers, the formations of “election police,” and the support of millions of rabid followers, I fear the day of honest elections may be ending.
Are we doomed to become vassals? Perhaps. But wicked leaders disappear in time. It’s important the world learn eventually the truth of what those leaders have done.
How can the world preserve that truth?
Well, with the help of future historians who can turn to newspaper articles and recorded media broadcasts. If they still exist. Current dictators are becoming ever more adept at suppressing honest news and eliminating any previously reported news. And even if such records are available, they reflect only what is felt to be the significant news of the day. But not the news of how you or I feel. Our fears, our attempts to overturn the disaster. Our sadness about losing our country.
I’ve read many biographies. Mostly about famous people. Mostly on people who lived more than 100 years ago. The biographers must love the life of those earlier days. Because people kept diaries. I don’t know how busy individuals had the time to record the day-to-day activities of their lives in the detail they did. Perhaps because no TV stole their minds. Anyway, diaries were common. These diaries became the source of much of the information that later appeared in biographies.
I began to wonder about keeping a diary. Not the normal kind where I describe the day’s activities and the people I met and the love I felt. Rather, more of a journal that reflects observations on the destruction of our country and the feeling each step brought out in me.
What if we all did that?
We could describe our worries as freedom after freedom was wrenched from us. How each step made us feel. Or our frustration as a single party methodically eliminated all opposition and cemented control over our supposedly protective three branches of government. Or the gut-wrenching devastation of Supreme Court rulings.
In this way, if enough people recorded it, future historians would have a multi-source record of how the dictatorial faction took over and then governed.
In this way, maybe we could feel just a little that we were “sticking it” to the regime that had ruined our country.
Of course, many of us are doing that already via social media or blogs. The problem with this is it’s all electronic in the public domain and can be attacked and destroyed by dictators.
We’ll have to figure how to keep our thoughts in a place that is safe today but can be found tomorrow. Maybe thumb drives hidden in our homes?
If anyone does keep such records, I thank him or her. I hope future historians will find these thoughts and share them with the world.
And I hope the world will learn a lesson from them.