There is an unsettling element of our society that’s always been present. However, it’s one that’s kept its true nature and intentions partially hidden under the guise of seeming normality. Individuals within that element were seen as somewhat manipulative, authoritarian, overly critical and intolerant of others, and self-righteous, but relatively harmless. In recent times this side of America has emerged as an arrogant, domineering force that is determined to reshape this entire society to fit its own demented ideology.
This is the dark side of America; it’s that select element in which morality, ethical behavior, integrity, empathy and honor, among other principles and values, are no longer considered to be of great import. This special breed of Americans no longer even try to hide their true sociopathic nature as they brazenly embrace a doctrine of greed, selfishness, corruption, hatred, a penchant for violence, and a love of war.
But, who, specifically, are these people? How many and what percentage of this nation’s population are to be found on this dark side? Well, for starters, when polls are taken on a variety of issues involving important social, economic or political matters it seems as if about 70% of Americans generally are in agreement and there is always somewhere around 30% that favor an entirely opposite view; one that is exemplified by an aggressive, unrelenting, ultra-conservative view of how all American people must live their lives.
We might try to make the case that this 30% of Americans who occupy the dark side are largely Republicans, but that would not really be fair or totally accurate. Based on Gallup and other polling, Republicans make up about 27% of the total electorate. And to be totally fair not all of them should be accused of being on the dark side because a good number of them are simply misguided, misinformed, politically mind-conditioned people who blindly accept whatever the GOP leadership, Fox News hosts, and Rush Limbaugh tell them.
So this dark side is comprised of a large portion of Republicans but also contains Americans who call themselves independents and, yes, there are more than a few Democrats who fit that category. So, let’s get more specific and try to identify those individuals, those groups and organizations who occupy this dark side of America. They are those:
Who manage the machinery of war and the military empire. In this group are those who generate massive profits from war; those who manufacture the weapons of war that are used to invade and occupy other nations and are sold to nations around the world. Those who make the drones that rain hellfire missiles and death down upon suspected terrorists and innocent civilians alike. To them war is not something that should be engaged in as a last resort after all attempts to settle conflicts peacefully fail. No, war is in their blood, they thrive on it and it is what drives and motivates them.
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Who are destroying our manufacturing sector, our plants and our workforce. If Corporate America is allowed to have its way we will, over a period of time, see the entire American manufacturing sector become a permanent part of China, India and other overseas nations. These highly profitable mega-corporations have no loyalty to this country or its workers. While they would vehemently deny it, their primary objective, in the long run, is to have this nation’s entire workforce, at least what’s left of it, working for the minimum wage — or even lower.
Who pose as objective journalists but are really in the business of conditioning the minds of Americans to remain passive and silent even as they see their nation in a state of deterioration; pseudo-journalists on TV, radio and in newspapers who are experts at twisting and manipulating the news to promote the agenda of those who want to control this nation by destroying its democracy. While there are still some respected, objective journalists in America, the profession of journalism has now been contaminated by the few mammoth media empires that control it and use it to spread the doctrine and propaganda of the corporate world.
Who work to eliminate vitally important social programs such as Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and others that are in distinct danger to be absorbed and controlled by the political and financial sectors of the dark side. The vast majority of Republicans, joined by some Democrats, together with the masters of corporate finance, are anxious to convert the resources that support and maintain these programs into a part of the gambling operations that go by the name of Wall Street, the stock and bond markets and their speculators.
Who stir up hatred, bigotry, racism, to create deep divisions among the American people. When has America been so very divided by so many opposing elements and factions? Racism, bigotry, homophobia, chauvinism and other manifestations of disdain or hatred of others, instead of being eliminated by a positive evolution of this society, are rapidly increasing. If the news organizations of this nation had acts of hatred and violence removed from their agenda, they would have nothing of real importance to report and they would slowly dry up and wither away.
Who use religion to promote and spread their own brand of polluted political ideology across America. One of the worst terms that I have ever heard is a “sociopathic Christian.” Obviously that’s not only an oxymoron but it is also a complete possibility because the two words are diametrically opposed. But the term is often used to describe sociopaths who call themselves Christians. And what do we hear from the religious leaders of America, from those should be preaching the message of peace and “do unto others as you would have them do unto you?” Nothing but silence and more silence.
Who shamelessly take corporate $ to keep their political jobs. Pity these weak-kneed, corrupted politicians who have reduced themselves to no more than slaves and facilitators of Corporate America. They live on the dark side of the Congress where funds for the war machine are continuously approved with no discussion or debate, where laws to regulate the financial sector are either watered down or are never even considered; where Corporate America rules with an iron fist, and where this nation’s most critical problems have been erased from the Congress’ useless agenda.
Who have decided to insult and disrespect the women of America. This is one of the dumbest, most irrational acts in political history. These GOP agents of gender bias and domination have really gone off the deep end as they are in the process of trying to destroy the rights that have taken the women of America so long to obtain; they want to take down Planned Parenthood, eliminate a woman’s right to choose, ban the use of contraceptives, and eliminate laws granting equal pay to women, as was recently done by Governor Walker and his Wisconsin GOP controlled legislature. When these political hacks and fools decided to declare war on the women of this nation, they may have committed political suicide; at least we can hope so — but could America be so very fortunate, so very lucky?
Who blindly support Israel’s brutal, overly aggressive military actions in the Middle East and who accept, condone and applaud Israel’s cruel and inhuman actions against Palestinians; especially, the barbarous attacks on the people of Gaza. Those who have no sense of empathy or mercy for the Palestinian people who have, for decades, been the victims of suppression and oppression by the government of Israel. Those who relentlessly beat the drums of war against Iran and will do everything in their power to make it happen.
This dark force is a menace to this nation and our democracy; it has the potential power to destroy this nation from within if its twisted ideology is allowed to run rampant and unchecked. If it succeeds in gaining full control over this government then America will become a living hell. It is a force that poses an extreme, imminent danger to the future of America; it is a force that we must combat and take down.
Michael Payne is an independent progressive activist. His articles concentrate on social, economic and political matters as well as American foreign policy. He is a U.S. Army veteran and a graduate of Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois. His (more…)