The spirit of lawlessness
By D. Paul Thomas
For America’s obdurate ideologues, it has always been an intellectual challenge to connect the historical dots. Inexorable as these connective dots may be, the ideologues’s ability to parse language, compartmentalize issues, and rationalize destructive behavior allow them to move seamlessly from one cause du jour to another, with little reflection on what preceded and influenced the current crisis at hand.
In the 1930’s, our domestic socialists and communists lauded Stalin even as he sent millions to their death in the Gulags. While condemning Hitler publicly, Roosevelt quietly refused port of entry for the S.S. St. Louis that was carrying 937 Jewish refugees, many of them children escaping the Nazis deathcamps. Recently, one of the most glaring examples of historical cognitive dissonance was the 9/11 attack on America, which was peddled as a natural “blowback” to America’s imperial hegemony, not a continuum of a centuries-old jihad against the West. Such myopic, historical revisionism is endemic to the Left, and has spread through academia, the press, entertainment, and the progressive church as fast as the inferno that ingulfed Paradise, CA. And, like that tragic town’s name, the cost of life and liberty is irrelevant to the purging and deprograming needed to achieve the Left’s distorted vision of its “paradise on earth.”
Presently, as police departments are defunded, the Left either denies or justifies the soaring crime rates, blaming it on systemic racism and its frontline operatives—racist cops. Our cities are occupied, vandalized, and burned with impunity throughout the summer months, but it is not until a massive crowd’s volatile vanguard penetrates the chambers of the U.S. Capital that we finally hear the urgent cries for the National Guard, all the while being fed by the media that the lawlessness of the summer has no bearing on the lawlessness of January 6. And even if it does, one dare not compare the riots of the summer to the riot at the Capital: the former consisted of “peaceful protestors,” demanding social justice; the latter were white-privileged “insurrectionists,” seeking power over the oppressed. And if you don’t embrace this leftist version of history, you are labelled de facto—a racist.
Fortunately, millions of Americans saw with their eyes and heard with their ears what was happening, and they weren’t buying the “mostly peaceful protests” media-spin while witnessing their cities boarded up and lit ablaze. And, unlike Nero, they weren’t playing a fiddle as their cities burned. They knew in their sinking hearts that the spirit of lawlessness had been let loose upon the land, condoned and abetted by a liberal elite. They were fearful for their nation, fearful for their businesses, for their homes, and for their lives. And they couldn’t help but ask themselves that unmentionable question—don’t all lives matter?
The truth is, all lives don’t matter for the zealous Left and its dupable acolytes. When I asked a prominent clergyman in my city what he thought about the senseless death of retired police Captain David Dorn (murdered by a looting protestor while protecting a friend’s pawn shop), the good Reverend responded, “Who’s David Dorn?” Evidently, the minister was too busy procuring a “Black Lives Matter” banner for an inter-faith “peace march” than to be aware of the toll on human life that the “peaceful protests” were already taking across the country.
Tragic as the siege on the Capital was, “Lee’s Pawn and Jewelry Shop” in North St. Louis was as important to its owner and Captain Dorn as the U.S. Capital is to our self-important politicians. While frowned upon by many ruling elites, these pawn shops provide a week-to-week lifeline for thousands of Americans. At the risk of transparency, 2016 was an annus horribilis for my wife and me. Medical bills and two years of unemployment as an actor/playwright drove me to some desperate measures: my local pawn shop was more than accommodating, taking in a diamond heirloom, a Tiffany watch, and a 16th century icon (their first!) for a few cents on the dollar, providing us with essentials for a couple of months. While the interest was outrageous, so is the 25% on a Capital Card that actor/activist Samuel L. Jackson promotes so gleefully on TV. Here’s the bottom line: sadly, it may be poverty, pain, a pandemic and death that now unite this country. The days when Lincoln wrote, “Both (North & South) read the same Bible and pray to the same God” are essentially gone. Yet thousands of those January 6 protestors are God-fearing, hard-working, Rust-Belt, often unemployed and impoverished citizens in contrast to the affluent, privileged, white-supremacists the media characterizes them as. They share the same hardships with millions of everyday Americans, and, remarkably, regardless of their neighbor’s skin color or sexual identity, they live in peace without the government’s interference.
Neither the rhetoric of President Trump’s “fight like hell” nor Chuck Schumer’s “the country will reap the whirlwind” move our nation closer to unity and tranquility. It’s up to us. And in the process, may we not forget the torched Wendy’s in Atlanta, the fearful, jewelry store owner in Santa Monica, the “City Kicks” store in Kenosha, Wisconsin, the Lake Street Liquor Store in Minneapolis, and, yes, the pawn shop in North St. Louis and ensuing death of Captain David Dorn. And may we never forget the brutal death of George Floyd.
Connect the dots, and you will find there are sacred people and sacred places everywhere in the eyes of God and treating them all accordingly will be the only way to quell the spirit of lawlessness that has been let loose upon our land.
D. Paul Thomas is an actor, playwright and essayist. Currently, he is Creative Director of TGA Productions - tgaproductions.org. Reach him at: firstname.lastname@example.org.