Old: Resistance is cool and patriotic.
New: Resistance is ignorant and deadly.
Remember when resisting an authoritarian megalomaniac who through his elected office would infringe on your constitutionally protected rights and freedoms was really cool and celebrated by pop culture and the mainstream, legacy media? Yeah, that’s not a thing anymore.
To be honest, it wasn’t really a thing when it was a thing. More on that later.
Since the 2016 election, poor, sad souls who believed the baseless promises of professional political analysts who assured them that Hillary Clinton would shatter that glass ceiling and be the 45th president have routinely taken to the streets with horrifying costumes, profane chants and tragic acts of pathetic desperation. And they were seen as heroes to the thought-leaders on cable news and in Hollywood.
So protesting and resisting oppressive government was the really cool thing to do, right? In fact, if you don’t resist the tyranny, you’re not a real patriot, we’ve been told.
That is until patriots took to the streets this weekend to protest the arbitrary, illogical and heavy-handed restrictions imposed on their basic freedoms by certain governors using the coronavirus pandemic to justify their egregious use of executive power. That kind of resistance is downright unlawful and is going to kill people.
Let’s be clear, Americans are not protesting because they’ve been directed to stay home and only travel for “essential” reasons. They are not protesting because they’ve been forced into dire economic conditions due to the social distancing protocols. They are not protesting because they’re “greedy” and prioritize their paycheck over human life, as many critics have said.
The protests didn’t really start until governors started flexing their power in unreasonable and confounding ways.
On Easter Sunday, Christians were issued citations for attending church services in their cars. In Southern California, skateboard parks were deliberately filled with sand so kids couldn’t play even though it is literally impossible to skateboard and be in contact with another person. In Michigan, purchasing seeds was outlawed.
None of these protocols make sense. They are heavy-handed and have no real basis other than serving as an exercise in an elected official flexing their temporary muscles to keep their subjects in line.
And, here in America, we the people don’t play that game.
But journalists who believe the First Amendment is only about them (and performance artists who scream and rub chocolate on their naked bodies) are outraged. In fact, some journalists are actively working to stop citizens from peacefully assembling and voicing their opposition to their state governments.
On Monday, ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos grilled Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg over the platform being used by organizers of the protests.
“How do you deal with the fact that Facebook is now being used to organize a lot of these protests to defy social distancing guidelines in states?” the “Good Morning America” anchor asked Zuckerberg. “If somebody trying to organize something like that, does that qualify as harmful misinformation?”
“We do classify that as harmful misinformation and we take that down,” Zuckerberg said. “At the same time, it’s important that people can debate policies, so there’s a line on this, you know, more than normal political discourse. I think a lot of the stuff that people are saying that is false around a health emergency like this can be classified as harmful misinformation.”
By the end of the day, journalists were celebrating the fact that Facebook, at the direction of governors, removed the protest posts.
Anti-quarantine protests being organized through Facebook in California, New Jersey, and Nebraska, are being removed from the platform on the instruction of governments in those three states because it violates stay-at-home orders, Facebook spokesperson @andymstone tells @donie.
— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) April 20, 2020
Journalists are celebrating a corporation acquiescing to an elected official who demanded that plans for a political protest be removed from a public website. Everything’s fine! Nothing to be concerned about here!
We truly have come full circle and not for the better.
Sure, we laughed at the ridiculous, pink-hat marchers over the past several years, they were hilarious! But we never thought for a second that these protests should be shut down. Yet here comes the “silence the protesters we don’t agree with movement” and it’s on steroids.
Here’s the sad irony… these protests really are resisting authoritarian megalomaniacs bent on infringing basic rights and freedoms and the anti-Trump resistance never really was.