In the early '80s the mid 1940s were popular--big shoulder pads, pencil skirts, tailored suits, and so on. (See BladeRunner, Xanadu, and popular print artist Patrick Nagel.) Novels and films set in the '40s were popular too. As a result, I read quite a bit about WWII in my early years. Some of the questions I had were, "How did the Nazis gain power?" and "What would I do if I were in Germany at that time?" Of course, everyone said they wouldn't have allowed the Holocaust. It's unthinkable that anyone with any awareness would be okay with it. However, me being me, I suspected there was more to such things. This is, in part, what motivates me as a Humanist and a Feminist. Mind you, no movement is perfect (see previous posts about humans and mistakes) but from what I've read and experienced, authoritarianism is where things go horribly awry. Which brings me to the article I read yesterday: The Rise of American Authoritarianism. It's long, but I recommend reading it all the way through because it does a mindful job of explaining.
From the article: "Authoritarians are thought to express much deeper fears than the rest of the electorate, to seek the imposition of order where they perceive dangerous change, and to desire a strong leader who will defeat those fears with force. They would thus seek a candidate who promised these things. And the extreme nature of authoritarians' fears, and of their desire to challenge threats with force, would lead them toward a candidate whose temperament was totally unlike anything we usually see in American politics — and whose policies went far beyond the acceptable norms." Y'all, Trump scares the shit out of me. Yes, I take him seriously. I feel he should be. (I've seen posts on FB where democrats ended up at the wrong polling place on Tuesday actually voted for Trump in a misguided attempt at 'strategy' or humor. That makes me angry. Voting is serious business. Your vote counts. If it wasn't powerful, members of the GOP wouldn't be systematically trying to remove that right from people who disagree with them. In any case, Trump may be the first of many and if that happens, democracy is utterly doomed. Because, as the article states, "...when non-authoritarians feel sufficiently scared, they also start to behave, politically, like authoritarians." Yeah. Remember when I said neither point of view was perfect? That. So, if you ever wondered how it is that dictators get into power...the answer is not "Well, the people in that situation were stupid. We're smarter than them." The moment you declare "Any means to an end." I suspect you're headed off the rails.
Next, have two links revolving around the issue of open carry and police in schools. First, Texas Academics Told to Avoid 'Sensitive Topics' if Gun Law Goes into Effect. If you were wondering why permitting concealed carry on school campuses is a bad idea, there's one of the best arguments against. It limits access to education--not merely because some students will not feel safe, but because teachers will be afraid to teach. Second, a story about how the training of campus police may have contributed to brutality toward, and in one case murder of, students. Again, there is a distinction between soldiers and a police. These two groups do not have the same function. When the mix them up, we tend to get into trouble.
is a Science Fiction and Fantasy author living in Texas.