America is in a state of decay.
The images from Charlottesville this past weekend showed us some of the darkest rot.
Nazi flags amidst shouts of “Heil Trump”.
Angry white men screaming in the name of confederate patriotism.
A white supremacist plowing his vehicle into counter-protesters, murdering one local American and injuring many others.
Is this what America has become?
Perhaps the most irrefutable indication of America’s decay is the lack of condemnation from its President.
For a President who has spoken so freely of “fire and fury” when it comes to a potential nuclear war with an unstable state, Donald Trump was carefully selective with his words when asked to denounce the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville and claimed that “many sides” were to be blamed for the violence.
Although several Republican leaders have spoken out condemning the white supremacy and violence displayed in Charlottesville, too many are still too silent.
When the former KKK leader invokes the name of the President of the United States claiming that this rally is “fulfilling the promises of Donald Trump”, when the police show up in riot gear at Black Lives Matter rallies but are idly on standby during a white supremacist rally, when there is an intensifying investigation into the finances and presidential campaign of the President of the United States - there is no doubt – America is in decay.
There are, of course, deep roots of decay in American history. Slavery and racism have played an integral role in shaping American identity.
But the putrefaction intensified when the words “Make America Great Again” were first uttered. When these words unleashed the fury of closeted bigots frustrated by the boundaries of political correctness. When Nazis and white supremacists saw that they could have a platform in America – unhooded and openly proclaiming their hatred in broad daylight.
President Trump is already carving out a special legacy in history with his anti-immigrant vision and policies. But as I’ve written before, history has never celebrated the likes of Donald Trump.
Nazis were defeated before and will be defeated again. Indeed it was the fight against the Nazis which unified the world like never before and formed the creation of the United Nations.
The decay of America is on full display right now. We may not be able to stop the decay but this may be the very opportunity we need to unite, to speak out, to fight against what we know to be wrong. At the very least we need to be outraged.
As Heather Heyer noted, if you’re not outraged, you’re not paying attention.