walking on thin ice, i'm paying the price...
A good speech, but I think it would be wrong to associate racism with fascism - even if the 'left wing' identifies with the downtrodden who comprise most minorities while the 'right wing' tends towards the status quo and therefore is inherently against minority interests. I've found trying to show racists why racism is wrong is fruitless. Anybody who believes their own superiority comes from the color of their skin isn't too bright to begin with. I'm sure on the other hand that this problem will slowly recede over time. The spectacular rise of fascism in the States, however, has me alarmed. "First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out because I was not a communist; then 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; and then they came for me - and there was no one left to speak out for me."-Pastor Martin Niemöller, 1945
I agree with you completely.I think my title was misleading. I was not trying to say that racism = fascism, because I agree with you that it is more complicated than that. Like you, I am afraid of the rise of fascism here.I was thinking about the Woody Guthrie song (from 1942), more recently recorded by Billy Bragg and Wilco, entitled "All You Fascists." The speech--about race but in a union context--made me think about this song--a labor song, but which also takes on race-hatred. Anyway, the song goes like this:I'm gonna tell all you fascists you may be surprisedThe people in this world are getting organizedYou're bound to lose, you fascists are bound to loseRace hatred cannot stop us this one thing I knowYour poll tax and jim crow and greed have got to goYou're bound to lose, you fascists bound to loseAll of you fascists bound to loseYou fascists bound to loseAll of you fascists bound to loseYou fascists bound to loseYoure bound to lose! you fascists!Bound to losePeople of every colour marching side by sideMarching cross these fields where a million fascists diedYou're bound to lose, you fascists bound to loseI'm going into this battle, and take my union gunWell end this world of slavery before this battles wonYou're bound to lose, you fascists bound to lose
After reading those lyrics I can only say he must have had quite an experience living through the fifties. He's right, eventually fascism drops its mask and cannibalizes its own supporting masses and dooms itself, but history has shown the cost to remove them from power is horrific. The possibility of a depression is bad enough, the costs of a depression and social uprising simultaneously: my mind just refuses to go there.
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