Monday, March 27, 2023

"What Is Wokeness?"


A concerned reader, or just someone I irritated, decided to respond to my previous post "CRT and Woke", and inform us “Wokeness is Marxism in the 21st Century”. Despite the mysterious origin of this screed, I’ll take it as the best argument the radical Right can muster on the topic.

I’ll post it for all to review, then give my response. 


There are those on the "woke" left who seem to believe conservatives cannot define what wokeness is. Well, let me help by taking a swing at it.

Karl Marx and his early followers often referred to "class consciousness." Since Marxism holds that all human relationships are class based, "class consciousness" referred to propagandizing the people to make them "conscious" of these class distinctions as the root of all their problems. "Woke" is just another word for consciousness. There's more to it, so if you're interested, read on.

Marxists like all tyrants, always want to control language because they know if they can control what people can say, they can control how they think and eventually how they behave. This all began with "political correctness." Look where that's gotten us. Certain words are effectively banned. But not all banned words are banned for everyone. We now accept a double standard and believe we continue to have freedom of speech. Certain words are off limits to some, while others use the same words and earn a king's ransom. Odd, isn't it?

After the 2nd World War, the Marxist use of the term "class consciousness" seemed anachronistic and dated. Then came Herbert Marcuse of the Frankfurt School. He, along with many others refined Marx's class consciousness theory with a tool called "Critical Theory". This theory proposed to raise "consciousness" or more colloquially, "wokeness", by applying Critical Theory to societal institutions. Marx believed all existing institutions had to be destroyed in order for socialism and communism to be realized. He reasoned that all existing institutions served the status quo interests controlled by the dominant capitalist class who subordinated, exploited and enslaved all other classes.

Critical Theory is the overarching term applied to a panoply of Critical Theories applied to different institutions Marxists target for attack. Therefore, Critical Gender Theory is actually an attack on the nuclear family and heterosexuality, by making people conscious or if you prefer, "woke" and supporting of the systematic degradation and deconstruction of the traditional family as a foundational institution. That's what "woke" means in that sphere. The appeal to rights for transgenders is only the vehicle employed for the destruction of women, motherhood and the traditional nuclear family.

Critical Race Theory is also an attack, but simply based in race. All the different Critical Theories endeavor to control speech and actions through suppression of any alternative views. We see examples of this on college campuses every day where the neo-Marxist chant "speech is violence." This is upside down. It can be said that violence can be a form of speech, but it's absurd to suggest that speech itself is violence. This is how the suppression of speech becomes justified in the minds of these militants.

Each version of Critical Theory has its own version of "wokeness". It's just dishonest to suggest it defies description. Anyone familiar with Marxism and the Frankfurt School and Herbert Marcuse in particular understands this. This isn't ambiguous. Wokeness is Marxism in the 21st Century.

It attempts to distance itself linguistically from the classic Marxist terminology, making it appear different in form only. There is no difference at all in substance. The important point here is this: all of this was enabled by accepting the cancer of political correctness.

The day is coming soon when political dissent in America will be driven underground if people don't stand up to this right now. Do not comply.


The author’s take on the question “What is woke” leads us to ask our own questions. How will we ever know who asks, and declares, “What is Wokeness?”

The anonymous troll didn’t credit his copy-and-paste white nationalist “definitions”.

Who is the “me” who is “taking a swing at it”?

Why won’t he have the integrity to put his name to that piece? I suspect it’s because he lacks the ability to compose it. Then there’s the additional apparent lack of integrity in withholding the name of the actual author.

This lack of integrity and honesty sets up our case and obviously weakens his.

Everything the radical Right hates is “woke” “CRT” or “Marxism” because they will ALWAYS unilaterally redefine anything they hate as “woke” “CRT” and “Marxism”.

I thank him for proving my point that they need to disregard or dismiss any definitions they don’t like and make up new ones to suit their prejudice and hate. 

Make no mistake. Hate and bigotry are at the core of this nonsense, expressing moral panic, bitter grievances, and paranoia through the manufactured horror of the  “destruction of women, motherhood and the traditional nuclear family”. This expresses the fear, anger and resentments fomenting within the reactionary FEELINGS of the radical white Right. In fact, this tirade would resonate with every American white supremacist and neo-Nazi. 

Hundreds of armed radical Right bigots, including "Sieg Heil" chanting neo-Nazis, joined by right-wing Christian groups, converged on a park in Ohio where parents were and children had gathered to enjoy a drag queen story event. (Hint: Idiots with guns kill children, drag queens do not.)

Let’s remember on February 1, 1933, Hitler proclaimed, “The National Government...regards Christianity as the foundation of our national morality, and the family as the basis of national life."  

Every white nationalist fascist ideology must also embrace a false sense of victimhood. Hitler was a “victim” of the Jews. Trump and his cult are “victims” of the “Marxist radical Left”, aka “racist” Black prosecutors, the “deep state”, Democrats and “RINOs”.

The election was “rigged”. Justice is “weaponized”. These are just two of their bitter projections to deflect from Trump’s efforts to interfere with states’ election counts by fake electors, strong-arming a Secretary of State, and his efforts to have his DOJ  “just say the election was corrupt and leave the rest to me and House Republicans” 

Of course, they see no “political correctness” in parroting Trump’s fascistic swill of lies, lest they fall into their Dear Leader’s disfavor. “Disloyal RINOs” beware.

The other blatant projection is Marxists “want to control language because they know if they can control what people can say, they can control how they think and eventually how they behave”. And there’s their reason for redefining terms to fit their prejudice and hate.

The other big giveaway of this racist “definition” is glaring.

Notice the “definitions” of woke and CRT completely ignore the existence, history and effects of slavery and racism, the essential roots of the original meaning of woke and CRT. This is why the radical white Right insists they alone have authority to whitewash racism, woke, and CRT.

“The Life of Rosa Parks,” a biography of a civil rights hero who fought segregation, is one of 176 titles that schools in Duval County, Florida, removed from classrooms for review, per Business Insider. According to nonprofit PEN America, the books in review have been in storage for months “with little indication of when they might return to classrooms."

A textbook publisher used in 45,000 Florida schools recently removed any reference of Rosa Parks’ race in a draft lesson plan, per The New York Times. The publisher, Studies Weekly, said this was done to comply with Gov. Ron DeSantis’ (R) “Stop WOKE Act."

“In Florida we are taking a stand against the state-sanctioned racism that is critical race theory,” said DeSantis in his 2021 proposal of the law. “We won’t allow Florida tax dollars to be spent teaching our kids to hate our country or to hate each other.”

One more radical Right projection, deflecting from THEIR efforts to teach kids and adults to deny white American racism and hate others who see it for the reality it still is.

When they tell us it’s all a “commie plot to destroy America”, they really see a "plot to threaten white supremacy".

Friday, March 10, 2023

CRT And Woke


Merriam-Webster - Woke: aware of and actively attentive to important societal facts and issues (especially issues of racial and social justice)

Conservative writer Bethany Mandel: “It is sort of the understanding that we need to totally re-imagine and redo society in order to create hierarchies of oppression.”

As they’ve shown over the years, the radical Right notoriously refuses to discuss or debate in good faith. Every high school debate team learns a debate depends on mutual agreement on definitions of terms.

This becomes a problem in today’s political discourse. The Right will often reject accepted meanings of terms to suit their bias, dishonesty, bigotry, racism, and political agenda.

They have usurped the unilateral authority to redefine terms. It's one of their primary propaganda tools. An early example is their suppressing the accurate term “Estate tax” and redefining it as the “death tax”. Estates are taxed, death isn’t. Patriotism itself was twisted into loyalty to Trump and seeing progressives and Democrats as "communists who hate America". Anything tinged with fear and anger is useful for their purposes. They know fear and anger motivates uninformed and uneducated Americans to support them.

More recently radical Right white Republicans have been relentlessly redefining and demonizing terms like Critical Race Theory and “woke”. Their goal is to use these terms as emotional triggers to frighten and infuriate white conservatives into racial resentments and to inflame bigotry. That’s what wins elections for them. Their duplicitous culture war must be vehemently challenged.

Now we see almost everything that annoys conservatives is "woke".  Every academic discussion of the history and effects of slavery and racism is “Marxist CRT”. It forces white children to be "uncomfortable" and teaches them  "America is racist and you are to blame".  

In their propaganda, only white conservatives are allowed to define woke, CRT, and even racism. This has gone to the extreme absurdity that conservative white Americans are being told by their leaders THEY are now the “real victims” of racism.

On the other hand, there’s the fringe on the Left that do no favors for their concept of woke. Protesting racist police brutality is woke. Rioting and destruction isn’t. It is criminal, and it will be falsely branded as “woke” by the Right.

Desecrating or tipping over statues of Lincoln or the founders who owned slaves isn’t woke. It’s vandalism and a crime. It dishonors the legacy of their own wokism of their time. Abolishing slavery and establishing a democratic republic were their responses to systemic injustice.

When Blacks and educators dare discuss CRT and the real history and effects of slavery and racism, they are smeared as promoting “wokism”, as if they are the “evil commie racists”. Behind their howls about CRT lurks the stench of racism. Behind their howls about “woke” lies bigotry.

It is woke to understand members of the LGBTQ community have been victims of bigotry and abuse. But when some of them demand special accommodations and conformity to their chosen pronouns, they should understand this can confuse and upset people who never had exposure to their culture and lifestyles. They might want to consider whether they are forcing too much on other’s beliefs and sensitivities. Most Americans aren’t comfortable with teens or their parents deciding on transgender surgeries.

Many are uncomfortable with trans kids in school sports, or what bathroom they use.

Vandalism and demands for conformity become counterproductive. What happens next is any criminal and aggressive behavior will be what the Right calls “woke”, only to result in more bigoted and racist reaction. Progressives shouldn’t let the radical Right bigots and racists define woke, CRT, and racism. It is not their right to do so.

The sole purpose of these deceptions and outright lies is to fuel division, racism, anger, and hate in their white conservative base. All to get votes so they can have power. This reveals them as basically sociopathic con artists. If they can’t have power, they are more than willing to tear the country apart. Some Texas Republicans even want a vote on secession.

Woke originated as a term for conscious awareness of injustices against Blacks, and efforts to address it in good conscience. These have never been valued by the power seeking Right, so they need to dishonestly distort and redefine woke, CRT, and racism.

The good news is most Americans don’t seem to be buying into the Republicans’ distorted politicized definition of woke:

Republican presidential hopefuls are vowing to wage a war on "woke," but a new USA TODAY/Ipsos Poll finds a majority of Americans are inclined to see the word as a positive attribute, not a negative one.

Fifty-six percent of those surveyed say the term means "to be informed, educated on, and aware of social injustices." That includes not only three-fourths of Democrats but also more than a third of Republicans.

Overall, 39% say instead that the word reflects what has become the GOP political definition, "to be overly politically correct and police others' words." That's the view of 56% of Republicans.

Why would Florida’s Gov. Ron DeSantis pass a “Stop WOKE Act”? So he can demonize and redefine it to his political advantage. The same is true for the entire Republican Party.

When DeSantis’ lawyers were forced by the court to define “woke”, the lead lawyer correctly described it as “The belief there are systemic injustices in American society and the need to address them.”

The founders, abolitionists, Lincoln, Native American leaders, suffragettes, Martin Luther King and civil rights advocates, as well as the voting rights and civil rights acts were all “woke” by this definition. Many of these Americans were murdered for what the Right now calls “wokeism”. Even Jesus was crucified for his “woke” compassionate teachings about loving your neighbor, welcoming the stranger, visiting prisoners, feeding the poor and healing the sick, the “least of my brothers”.

What did they all have in common? Contemporary conservatives hated them all.

Saturday, March 4, 2023

GOP Fascism

"We are in an epic struggle to rescue our country from the people who hated it, and want to absolutely destroy it."

Trump or Hitler? What's the difference?

Not every Republican is a fascist. Some may even have a modicum of conscience, but it’s never their primary concern, as they primarily coddle the rich and deprive the sick and poor. (And they think they’re being Christians.)

The Republican Party isn’t the American Nazi Party. Not yet. But they are being taken over by the same fascist fringe ideology that spawned Hitler’s regime. 

Some people are annoyed  by any comparisons I’ve made. “But Republicans aren’t putting people in camps”, I’m told.

This is correct. But that’s not where German Nazis started in their path to power, either. It was from the same roots of racism, lies, extreme nationalism and will to dominate. 

Only Republicans fly the Confederate Flag. That alone should tell the story.

History has supplied ample evidence of what fascism is all about. Banning books, demonizing and scapegoating minorities and educators, boasting of their superiority, and endless lies and hatred are all elements of a toxic authoritarian political cult.

They would dictate what can be taught in schools. They would demand purges in academia for those who do not conform to their ideology.

They would frame their racism to fit their twisted definitions of terms. Every time Republicans invoke “CRT” and “woke” they barely conceal their racism, an essential foundation of historical and current Nazi ideology.

And Nazis of the past and present will ALWAYS falsely accuse their opposition of being “Marxists” and “Communists” who “hate” their country.

In reality the hate is their projection. 

Their goal is one-party rule, and inflicting as much suffering as possible on anyone who stands in their way.

Radical Right neo-Nazis and white supremacists now see all pro-democracy advocates as "Marxists". Who else did that? Adolf Hitler. And like Hitler’s Nazis, they feel the same false sense of victimization. In fact; too many white nationalist bigots believe THEY are the "real victims" of racism. "More than half of Republicans think minorities are favored over Whites in the United States".

Hate, vengeance and white identity grievance have infected today’s Republican Party to frightening levels.

Another fair comparison is the fact Trump and Hitler both incited a Putsch to seize power. Trump even praised his thugs for their violence, saying, “You’re very special. We love you”. That day alone should cement his evil into the historical annals of fascism.

One more direct comparison between Nazis and Republicans is this: On October 10, 1936 Heinrich Himmler created the Reich Central Office for Combating Homosexuality and Abortion. In this assault on freedom and equality there is no distinction between them.

We see this fanaticism growing like a tumor in the Trump Cult, the US Congress, and in the states controlled by Republicans.

The catalog of radical Right extremism has become too vast to document here, so I’ll just focus on a few more examples of their fascistic war on democracy, truth and decency.

In one raging neo-Nazi diatribe Marjorie Taylor Greene called Ilhan Omar, Maxine Waters, Ayanna Pressley, Adam Schiff, Joe Biden, Rashida Tlaib, Nancy Pelosi, AOC, and Elizabeth Warren, “Communist Democrats who hate America, hate God, and hate our way of life.”

This enemy of truth decency and democracy howled, “You can’t allow it, to just transfer power ‘peacefully’ like Joe Biden wants.”

“We need to be the party of nationalism and I’m a Christian, and I say it proudly, we should be Christian nationalists.”

Ranting further about her failed coup on January 6, 2021, MTG boasted, "I want to tell you something, if Steve Bannon and I had organized that, we would have won. Not to mention, we would've been armed."

And of course what neo-Nazi would be worth their swastika if they didn’t project the evil darkness within their authoritarian amygdala? "I am not going to mince words with you all. Democrats want Republicans dead and they have already started the killings."

This insanity is from the newly empowered and profoundly nasty QAnon Queen of Congress. There’s so much more, but let’s move on to examples from the most extreme state of the Union.

A Florida Republican state senator proposed a bill that would require bloggers who write about DeSantis, his Cabinet officers, or members of the legislature, to register with the state.

Another authoritarian Florida fascist proposed outlawing the Democratic Party.

Per Orlando’s Spectrum News 13:

A new proposed bill could pave the way for the official removal of the Democratic Party from official voting information if passed in this year’s legislative session in Tallahassee. The bill, currently titled SB 1248, calls for the state Division of Elections to cancel the “filings” of a political party, to include party registration and approved status in any and all elections if that party’s platform had previously advocated for slavery, or involuntary servitude. 

Although not explicitly listed, the Democratic Party, which was popular in the nation’s South during Reconstruction, would fit the description. Economics and civil rights fueled significant changes in both parties in the years since. The bill includes language that would require any voter currently registered as a member of a canceled party to be notified by that political party to update their voter registration to an approved and active political party. 

The bill was filed by Florida state Senator Blaise Ingoglia.

Finally I present the latest neo-Nazi bile from the man the Republican Party cannot stop from running for president again.

"This Animal Prosecutor that they stuck on me over the Boxes Hoax is trying to TORTURE my people into telling lies. It’s all for political reasons, and the fact I’m leading big, in all the polls. He’s flying people from all over and throwing them in front of a D.C. Grand Jury. They are confused and scared – they’ve never done this before. These Democrat Marxist Pigs should be the ones that are investigated. The nice guy prosecutor in the Biden documents case hasn’t even started yet!"

Along with the perversion of justice, the victim card, the commie card, and the projection card are all there, lifted directly from Hitler's playbook.

If not for our fragile Constitution and weakened democratic institution of fair elections and representation that allow us to vote them out, these monsters would be even more destructive. How can anyone doubt what horrible violence and bloodshed they would inflict if they thought they could get away with it?

Past warnings are forgotten at our own peril.

"I could hire one half of the working class to kill the other half." – “Robber Baron” Jay Gould 

Fascism is definitely and absolutely opposed to the doctrines of liberalism, both in the political and economic sphere. - Benito Mussolini

“Three great forces rule the world: stupidity, fear, and greed.” - Albert Einstein

“There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.” - Isaac Asimov 

Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the bitch that bore him is in heat again. - Bertold Brecht 1941

First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a socialist.

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out— because I was not a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

- Pastor Martin Niemöller’s words at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum