Saturday, August 27, 2016

Fear is a Manifestation of Ignorance, the Fearmongering of Donald Trump and David Horowitz

Donald Trump and David Horowitz
David Horowitz states, “The Communist Party is the Democratic Party.”

Communism is an inflammatory word. That’s why Horowitz uses the word. He knows to the older generation Communism drums up hysteria of the “Red Scare” and McCarthyism. To have a better understanding of Communism, Socialism, Capitalism, and the free market system, it’s important to understand there are differences, variations, and adaptations in economic systems. If Horowitz’s followers take him at his word, believing that Democrats are Communist, their ignorance—lack of knowledge—will lead to unfounded fear and hate of Democrats.

Likewise, Donald Trump knows hateful speech towards Muslims influences those who lack knowledge of Islamic culture and religion. The result is unfounded fear and hate of Muslims. The danger is that Donald Trump's fearmongering is the Red Scare of our time. If we don’t put a stop to it, it will turn lives “upside down by false accusations and blacklists; political repression that walked all over freedom of expression and association,” just like McCarthyism did in the 1950s.

“Fear is not the result of ignorance,” one Trump supporter exclaimed, “When an animal senses fear, they aren't ignorant, it is their instinct for survival, and I truly believe this is what people like me sense if Hillary Clinton were to become the President of our country. We are fighting for survival.”

I believe that kind of reasoning is a result of inadequate knowledge of the factual differences between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Capitalist Donald Trump because they have been influenced by the fear propaganda spread by conservative media, Trump, and writers like Horowitz, who mislead, misinform, and consistently lie.

For political reasons, statements like Horowitz’s, just like the hate speech of Donald Trump, are meant to create fear and paranoia.

It works because fear is not taught. How we respond is taught. If your mother is afraid of spiders chances are you will be too. But, the more you learn about spiders, then you know what kind of spiders should be avoided or approached with caution, what spiders are safe, and you know a spider’s value to your environment. Your fear then has been transformed from ignorance to being informed. Therefore, you can make better decisions.

When an animal senses danger, they fight or flee because if they don’t do one or the other they know the consequences of inaction. That’s not out of fear. It’s out of experience that brought knowledge of the danger.

Like Socrates, I believe fear is a manifestation of ignorance. Ibn Rushd, a twelfth century Islamic philosopher, wrote, “Ignorance leads to fear, fear leads to hate, and hate leads to violence.”

Trump is a demagogue. He exploits the dark side of human nature, exploiting popular desires, nativism, fear, prejudice, hatred, violence, and even exploits human misery by mocking a reporter's disability. His “The Apprentice” reality show, like all reality shows, exploits schadenfreude, in this case finding put-down and humiliation pleasurable and entertaining. The success of “The Apprentice” became Trump’s model for how to conduct his campaign.

“A number of civil-rights organizations have spoken out about the rise of hate speech and violent threats by groups and individuals who support [Trump].”

Robert Reich writes, tragically Donald Trump’s “legacy of hate, paranoia, nativism and xenophobia will live on. He has legitimized bigotry. He has fueled scapegoating. He has coarsened America. Immigration reform will now be far more difficult to achieve. The Justice Department reports a spike of hate crimes against Mexican-Americans and Muslim-Americans. The Southern Poverty Law Center reports schoolchildren bullying their Latino and Muslim classmates. White supremacists have been let loose upon the land. Even former Klan leader David Duke is now running for the Senate.”

My vote in November will be for Democratic Party congressional candidates because I put great value on the issues they address, and for Clinton, because if nothing else, she will simply continue with the status quo. She is a known quantity, and I know—to the extent I can know—the consequences. I will not vote for Trump because he will bring to the presidency all behaviors I abhor and ideas that I don’t support. He will bring to the presidency all of what America should not be. It’s not that I fear a Trump presidency, it’s because I have a good idea of what the consequences of his presidency may be.

Copyright © Horatio Green 2016