Surely Not Here, the Ominous Final Night of the RNC


Edwin Hammond, Staff Writer

National conventions on both sides of the aisle will usually hold the trademark pageantry, consisting of fireworks, a copious amount of flags, and sorely staged anecdotes from voters.  However, like anything with Trump and the Republican party since Obama, this convention was far from conventional.  Never have I seen so many lies packed into four days of speeches from such esteemed guests as Lou Holtz, Mark and Patricia McCloskey (the couple charged with a felony for threatening protestors with a handgun and rifle), and Nicholas Sandmann, the student notorious for the Lincoln Memorial confrontation in 2019.  As I watched Trump and his speakers go on about Joe Biden being a “trojan horse for socialism” who wants to defund the police and make America’s national language Mandarin, I wondered how many people out there actually believed the false information being spread. The republican party relies on populism for the evangelical, deep south and consistently red states.   A key motif throughout the four nights was religion, and as I pieced together the rhetoric clinging to symbols like the flag or the bible or the second amendment with the recent events that seem all too familiar of a fascist state (just check in on the USPS if you are confused) I think of It Can’t Happen Here, a dystopian novel by Sinclair Lewis about a not too far off fascist America.

I know, you have probably heard it thousands of times, but really the prevalence of false information that has given way for the Qanon conspiracy, nationalism, and propaganda scarily mimics a democratic society gone autocratic.  Ironic seeing as that America is a nation founded on principles of liberty and justice.  Sinclair Lewis explores this, hence the title “It Can’t Happen Here.”  He characterizes people that I am sure we all know in our own circles who repeat the phrase “it can’t happen here,” as a tyrannical candidate takes office, more notably a wealthy quarry owner repeats the phrase.

The novel describes a Senator Berzelius Windrip winning the presidency over FDR.  After he begins sitting in office he encourages dissent, imprisons enemies, and even begins to dissolve congress.  I think it is obvious as to how our current president mirrors Windrip.  More recently, imprisoning political enemies.  In the wake of George Floyd, protests and even riots often aggravated by the police, have brought on unprecedented to Anti-Fascism, better known as Antifa.  However, controversially Trump has labelled Antifa a terrorist organization.  Ironic because by extension it means he is now anti-anti-fascism, but also dangerous seeing as it is a belief, any of his political enemies can be labelled as antifascist and be thrown in prison.  As is the case in Portland, New York, and other parts of the country where the protests erupted and have not ceased.  People are being thrown into unmarked vans with officers without badges for the President’s gain.  Anyone in support of the first amendment should recognize the danger in that fact.

Other than Trump’s administrative measures to ensure that his political enemies are quieter than his allies, the RNC was also full of Republican lies.  I already mentioned the ludicrous smears on Biden, but some facts were just str

aight up wrong.  Here are a few: “We shipped hundreds of millions of masks, gloves, and gowns to our front-line workers;” claiming Joe Biden will defund the police; using the Los Angeles mayor shutting off power for houses hosting parties as evidence of power shortages and a scapegoat for increased oil and gas production; and my favorite “The United States has among the lowest case fatality rates of any major country in the world.”

I can understand bending the truth and light propaganda.  They are both tools that are as old as politics itself, but it gets to a point where you bend the truth too far, and your base becomes a corrosive acid to the sanctity of democracy.  This turn to autocracy we are all witnessing first hand can only happen if we allow it to.  We allow our president to classify a belief as an organization, abduct people in unmarked vans, and curb the availability of mail-in voting, on top of encouraging supporters to vote twice.  Our country is very stupid to not hold our own commander-in-chief 

accountable for the infringements on our democracy.  If this does not cease, it would not be inaccurate to predict an America awfully similar to the one portrayed in It Can’t Happen Here.

Fact checking of the RNC: