President Joe Biden has made a cottage industry out of talking about political unity. His inaugural address was full of it; in a 21 minutes speech, he repeated the word 8 times, at least. “With unity we can do great things. Important things … For without unity, there is no peace, only bitterness and fury … This is our historic moment of crisis and challenge, and unity is the path forward,” and on, and on, and on. Despite how often he repeated the call for “unity,” however, it was hard to ignore another powerful current that ran through the speech.
President Biden is not really seeking unity as much as he is uniformity.
The President’s speech was ridiculously lauded by the insufferable Fox News host Chris Wallace, who claimed it was “the best” he has heard from any president, including President John F. Kennedy’s “ask not what your country can do for you” address in 1961. Certainly, Wednesday’s address contained some rhetorical flourishes, maybe even some decent moments, but ultimately, it isn’t worth its weight in paper money.
Maybe that’s because President Biden is not really seeking unity as much as he is uniformity. The President can talk about unity, but what he really means by the word is the absence of debate and silence from his critics. That’s called uniformity, and it’s the sort of political culture endemic to one-party, totalitarian states, where there is only one revealed political truth, and everyone else is on the wrong side of history.
Biden, in both action and word, refuses to address the growing hostility towards those embattled supporters of his predecessor, President Donald Trump—who are daily being compared to hapless victims of a cult, badly in need of “deprogramming.”
DEMOCRATS CALL ON BIDEN TO “DEPROGRAM” TRUMP SUPPORTERS
Deprogramming is a word that is less familiar these days, but was very much in vogue in the 1970s, when Joe Biden entered the Senate and cults like the Moonies and Hare Krishna were attracting the dedication and free labor of jaded youths. Now, it has been revamped to become the latest Democratic demand that 74 million Trump supporters need to be carted off to a re-education camp, severed from their psychological bondage to Trump, and exiled to contemplate their decrepitude.
Listen to Biden wax poetically on January 20th: “Today on this January day, my whole soul is in this. Bringing America together. Uniting our people. Uniting our nation. And I ask every American to join me in this cause.”
“Uniting to fight the foes we face: anger, resentment, and hatred, extremism, lawlessness, violence, disease, joblessness and hopelessness,” he continued.
“With unity, we can do great things, important things. We can right wrongs. We can put people to work in good jobs. We can teach our children in safe schools. We can overcome the deadly virus. We can reward—reward work and rebuild the middle class and make health care secure for all. We can deliver racial justice, and we can make America once again the leading force for good in the world.”
“Racism, nativism, fear, demonization.”
You can do all of these things without any sort of unity—history is evidence of that. The American republic has successfully survived for 245 years, despite there always being differences of opinion in the country over who should be running the country and how they should be doing so. Those ideological differences—at times, outright conflicts—have fostered political innovation in the United States, and our republic is all the stronger for it.
True, those divisions are more pronounced today than they have been in recent history, and President Biden acknowledged that ideological cleavage in his speech, but he did so not by describing a competing political party or productive civic opposition in the Republicans. Instead, Biden referenced his dissenters by invoking a dark vision of Americans apart from mainstream society, at the fringes of political debate, something recalling the “deplorables” that former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton still loves to hate.
“I know speaking of unity can sound to some like a foolish fantasy these days. I know the forces that divide us are deep, and they are real, but I also know they are not new. Our history has been a constant struggle between the American ideal that we are all created equal and the harsh, ugly reality that racism, nativism, fear, demonization have long torn us apart. The battle is perennial, and victory is never assured,” the President said, edging closer to his real message that day.
“Racism, nativism, fear, demonization.” Even if he wasn’t explicit in his castigation of Trump supporters, that woebegon lot is clearly his intended target. Just weeks before, then President-elect Biden dismissed his predecessor as “unfit to govern.”
Unlike the President, the Democratic machine, which now controls the mainstream media, Big Tech, and large corporations, has not been so subtle. According to the latest intelligence gathering from Project Veritas, PBS attorney Michael Beller suggested the children of Trump undergo some form of ideological training in a re-education camp: “We go for all the Republican voters, and Homeland Security will take their children away. And we’ll put them (Trump supporters’ children) in re-education camps,” Beller was recorded as saying. to “re-education camps” and forced to watch public television shows till they can stand no more and have absorbed the political message.
Washington Post columnist and MSNBC analyst Eugene Robinson also suggested that Trump supporters should be “deprogrammed,” and described them as “members of a cult” earlier this month. In conversation with Nikole Hannah-Jones, lead writer of the “1619 Project,” Robinson outlined the clear and present danger that all these “white people” pose to American democracy.
“We have, there are millions of Americans, almost all white, almost all Republicans, who somehow need to be deprogrammed,” Robinson asked. “It’s as if they are members of a cult, the Trump-ist cult, and have to be deprogrammed. Do you have any idea how we start that process, much less complete it?”
These words are alarming. Many dictatorial regimes have both started and completed that very process—in the concentration camps of Nazi Germany and the Gulags of Soviet Russia. Communist China is continuing to perfect this process, in fact, in Xinjiang.
On Friday, former news anchor Katie Couric also voiced the need for “deprogramming,” condemning Trump supporters and House Republicans who voted against impeachment alike. Coming from someone who was once one of the most prominent journalists in America, it was more than a bit shocking, not to mention shoddy, to suggest that people who didn’t support her preferred candidate are nothing but mind control victims.
“I mean, it’s really bizarre, isn’t it, when you think about how AWOL so many of these members of Congress have gotten,” she told talk show host Bill Maher. “But I also think some of them are believing the garbage that they are being fed 24/7 on the internet, by their constituents, and they bought into this big lie. And the question is how are we going to really almost deprogram these people who have signed up for the cult of Trump.”
Of all left-wing pundits, however, Steven Hassan probably stole the show when it comes to deprogramming. Hassan is the author of The Cult of Trump, and had previously suggested that the former President had his followers in an iron grip of mental control. Hassan (whose other claim to fame was his enchantment with the Moonies during that cult’s heyday) argued during a January 19th appearance on CNN’s “New Day” that Trump’s malevolent personality was so powerful that it wasn’t just Trump supporters psychological adjustment, but “all of America” that needed to be deprogrammed from its heinous influence.
If these comments were coming from crackpots with little to offer but bellicose language and a political ax to grind, they would not be given the spotlight on network television. Instead, they represent an ongoing political smear campaign to dismiss political support for Former President Donald Trump as evidence of psychological sickness. This agenda manifests in the commentator class and the ruling class of Democrats, as the new administration is making moves to exorcize Trumpism from the masses.
THE WAR ON TRUMP SUPPORTERS
So this is the rather bizarre backdrop to Joe Biden’s lugubrious plea for unity and tolerance. Democratic supporters are openly calling Trump supporters crazy, and calling for a “deprogramming” of their political opponents. Meanwhile, White House press secretary, Jen Psaki, announced on Friday that President Biden has ordered Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines to compile a threat assessment of domestic terrorists.
“The Biden administration will confront this threat with the necessary resources and resolve.”
“The rise of domestic violent extremism is a serious and growing national security threat,” Psaki said, adding that, “The Biden administration will confront this threat with the necessary resources and resolve.” The press secretary then went on to describe an “NSC-convened process will focus on addressing evolving threats, radicalization, the role of social media, opportunities to improve information sharing, operational responses, and more.”
The target of these investigations is, of course, unambiguous—President Biden has already identified the Trump supporters who stormed the Capitol Building on January 6th as “a riotous mob” and “domestic terrorists.”
.@PressSec says that President Biden has sent a task to the ODNI "requesting a comprehensive threat assessment, coordinated with the FBI and DHS, on domestic violent extremism." pic.twitter.com/ZUlNocbNtD
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) January 22, 2021
With all the talk of “deprogramming,” it takes very little to see a world where Biden’s new campaign on domestic “terror” begins to label all Trump supporters and popular conservatives as domestic terrorists. That’s exactly where Biden’s surrogates in the media are going with this. There is already a bill sponsored by impeachment-happy Rep. Adam Schiff (R-CA) that would allow “domestic terrorists” to be prosecuted in the same manner as foreign terrorists. The problem with creating such a label is that it is subject to broad political interpretation. Were Biden only intent on identifying and prosecuting the mob who attacked the Capitol as “domestic terrorists,” why hasn’t he not explicitly stated that not all Trump supporters—even those who questioned the results of the presidential election—are domestic terrorists.
When the United States began its war on Foreign terrorism, President Biden’s predecessor was quick to declare that ‘not all Muslims’ are terrorists. Just seven days after the deadly attacks of 9/11, Former President Bush held a press conference to assure American Muslims that they would be treated with respect because “the face of terror is not the true faith of Islam.” President Biden’s silence here, meanwhile, speaks volumes about his intent to allow anti-conservative and Trump-supporter sentiments to flourish under his administration.
Former congresswoman and Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard (D-HW) made this point about finding new enemies of the state: “It’s so dangerous, as you guys have been talking about, this is an issue that all Democrats, Republicans, independents, Libertarians should be extremely concerned about, especially because we don’t have to guess about where this goes or how this ends.”
“What characteristics are we looking for as we are building this profile of a potential extremist, what are we talking about? Religious extremists, are we talking about Christians, evangelical Christians, what is a religious extremist? Is it somebody who is pro-life? Where do you take this?” she asked. “You start looking at obviously, have to be a white person, obviously likely male, libertarians, anyone who loves freedom, liberty, maybe has an American flag outside their house, or people who, you know, attended a Trump rally… A targeting of almost half the country,” Gabbard noted.
She also noted the comments of former CIA Director and avid Trump critic John Brennan who described the enemies of the states as an “unholy alliance of religious extremists, racists, bigots, he lists a few others and at the end, even libertarians.”
And if you think it’s just the Proud Boys potentially affected, 135 civil rights groups would disagree with you. A January 19th letter that included signatures from LGBT organizations and the NAACP urged the Biden administration not to start a domestic war on terror because they’re afraid where it might end.
Biden is playing a dangerous political game of seeming to talk like a moderate while governing like a rabid left-winger. While he talks about unity, he is systematically burying a huge portion of former President Trump’s legislative agenda under an avalanche of executive orders. If he really wanted to stimulate political unity, he might find something in the previous administration to commend, salvage, or at least tolerate. But instead, he is telling Americans to join the parade and accept the inevitability that the Trump legacy must be disgraced and excised while the Democratic agenda must be celebrated and disgraced.
Biden is leading a party that is much more radical than he has ever been.
Who knows how much of the once conservative Democrat remains in Biden’s soul and how much he has relinquished in his lifetime quest for the presidency. He may actually believe that he is just rallying Americans around the flag and not really insisting they endorse the Democratic vision. But a president can legitimately ask the country to unify when threatened with war; he cannot expect them to jettison their political ideas in order to promote some kind of artificial national community.
That’s uniformity and blatant political conformity.
Biden is leading a party that is much more radical than he has ever been. He has done his job in securing the presidency for the Democrats and is now completely expendable. There is something chilling about watching Biden sign all those executive orders in the Oval Office while Vice President Kamala Harris and coronavirus king Dr. Anthony Fauci stand behind his back and ensure that the old man is proceeding as required. Biden looks like he is under house arrest with a gun to his back. There is no more telling description of his presidency as he attempts to reconcile the competing objectives of convincing his political opponents that he wants to make peace with them while he plots to have them politically and perhaps legally marginalized.
It is also a fitting depiction of uniformity: we may be all in this together, but someone is in charge, and please do not question where he (or she) is taking us.
Biden may desperately yearn for unity in America, but it’s a unity forged entirely on his terms, and as long as he is governing in a democracy, it is a pipe dream. Instead, he seems resigned to pursue uniformity, and to do that ,he has to destroy everything that Donald Trump created in four years, excoriate his followers as wicked white supremacists and reduce the former president’s legacy to a ruinous experiment in irresponsible governance and authoritarian control. (Have you noticed how even a mediocre former governor of California like Arnold Schwarzenegger can now claim that Trump was the worst president in American history, despite his many achievements on the economic and foreign affairs front?)
It’s more than just gross hyperbole; it’s crass nonsense. But it’s all meant to define Trump and his dreadful supporters as emissaries from the political underground that can either get with the Biden parade—or else. Of course, Biden can only achieve his goal of uniformity when he has also extinguished the last embers of free speech in America. Still, as long as its citizens rebel against a Soviet-style system that insists we all think alike and are a threat to national security, as long as we share the same fear of the secret police coming for you in the night, he will very likely fail.