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A Nation Armed to the Teeth but Living in Fear

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(Article changed on October 25, 2012 at 13:41)

By Dave Lindorff


Americans are a people living in fear by ThisCantBeHappening

A new study by researchers at the University of Illinois in Urbana, showing that young children who are fearful in childhood are likely to be conservative when they grow up got me to thinking.

           It's not just that a whole generation of kids who get regularly belted by their parents, who are warned that if they behave in a certain manner they'll go to hell, or that their faces will freeze in some horrible contorted way, or that they will be thrown out of the house, are becoming Republicans. It's that virtually the whole country is populated by adults who have been raised in a climate of fear by a media and a government that are hell-bent on scaring the sh*t out of everyone.

The result is that a nation that once, for better or worse, was full of people who could strike out for unknown regions to stake a claim on land when they didn't even know how to farm (land admittedly belonging to native Americans who could understandably be expected to react with aggressive hostility to being expropriated), who could weather brutal winters with nothing to get them through but a musket and a store of root vegetables in the cellar, who could stand up to the mightiest military of its day and throw off a colonial yoke and boldly create a new country, now cowers in fear at the imagined threats of a landlocked group of uneducated and incredibly poor people living in a country that is a throwback to the 16th century.

America is supposedly the "Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave," as our unsingable national anthem puts it at its most unsingable point, but to tell the truth, it is no longer either of those things. Just try telling a cop who stops you for standing off the side of the road with your thumb out says you are breaking the law against hitchhiking, that he is wrong and that the law does not bar thumbing, and he will threaten you with arrest. Argue (which is your right), and you're likely to be slammed against his vehicle, cuffed, and dragged off to the slammer. Never mind that the cop is wrong about the law, and that your charges will be tossed later. If your resist, or mouth off further during this process, you might even be tased. In the end, you are busted, probably bruised, too, and you'll be detained for a couple of hours until your family can come spring you by paying an extortionate bail. You're not free, and the cop is certainly anything but brave...

For the rest of this article by DAVE LINDORFF in ThisCantBeHappening!, , the new independent Project Censored Award-winning online alternative newspaper, please go to:www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/1397

 

Dave Lindorff is a founding member of the collectively-owned, journalist-run online newspaper www.thiscantbehappening.net. He is a columnist for Counterpunch, is author of several recent books ("This Can't Be Happening! Resisting the (more...)
 

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