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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 3/12/21

The Real "Cancel Culture" Scheme By Republicans Revealed

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For some bizarre reason, our media has missed what's right in front of their faces

While Fox News, rightwing hate radio and Republican politicians have been all over the "canceling" of racist Dr. Seuss drawings (by the family foundation) and Mr. Potatohead (by toymaker Hasbro), they've been quite vigorous in pursuing "cancel culture" in other areas.

Over the past few weeks, for example, they have gone out of their way to try to cancel any sort of assistance to the tens of millions of Americans wiped out or thrown into serious crisis by Trump's incompetence in handling the COVID pandemic.

When the Democrats finally got legislation together to rescue America, every single Republican in both the House and the Senate used every procedural move they could to cancel it (including forcing a public reading of the bill) and, in the end, every single one of them also voted to cancel it.

And now they're trying to cancel our memory of their opposition: Republican Senator Roger Wicker just tweeted out a brag on how the COVID Rescue legislation will help restaurants in his state of Mississippi...even though he trash-talked it and voted to cancel it.

But that's just the beginning.

Republicans have been trying to cancel the minimum wage ever since it was enacted in the 1930s; more recently they've successfully canceled every attempt to increase that wage for well over a decade.

Republicans have done their best to cancel American's health care, from multiple lawsuits going all the way to the Supreme Court to cancel Obamacare, to nearly every Red state, to this day, refusing to expand Medicaid for their lowest-paid working people.

Along those same lines, Republicans have fought to cancel unions ever since the 1920s. In the 1940s they passed the Taft Hartley Act over President Harry Truman's veto, which gave individual states the right to cancel unions; nearly every Red State in the union has now taken them up on this, crashing union membership in America from about a third of all workers in 1980 to fewer than 6% of the private workforce today.

Republicans have worked hard to cancel educational opportunity for Americans, from elementary school through college. While Republican President Dwight Eisenhower built brand-new schools all across the United States in the 1950s, everything changed when Reagan came into office in 1981. He appointed Bill "You could abort every Black baby in this country and your crime rate would go down" Bennett as his Education Secretary and you can draw straight line from there to Betsy DeVos trying to cancel public schools all across America and replace them with for-profit private academies.

Republicans have been working since 1980 to cancel a woman's right to choose an abortion, and have even fought, in hundreds of legislative and legal cases, a woman's right to use birth control. Most recently, Republican State Representative Bryan Slayton introduced into the Texas legislature a law laying the death penalty on any woman who gets an abortion. He doesn't specify whether they should be killed by firing squad, hanging, or lethal injection, but when I asked a Republican candidate at CPAC some years ago which technique should be used to execute women who get an abortion, he simply said, "That's up to the states."

Republicans have also been trying to cancel the workplace, political, and social rights of women for two-years-short-of-a-century. The Equal Rights Amendment simply says: "Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex." It was written by Alice Paul in 1923, and finally passed Congress on March 22, 1972, but still had to be ratified by 3/4 of the states. Republicans in state after state fought it for decade after decade until it finally passed that threshold last year; now a federal judge says that too much time has passed and Congress needs to start all over again. So far, they've succeeded in canceling it (SCOTUS is next).

Republicans have been trying to cancel your clean air since the 1970s when the Environmental Protection Agency came into law after Congress ignored Richard Nixon's threatened 1970 veto. Every Republican administration since then has done everything they could to weaken it.

Similarly, in 1972, Richard Nixon vetoed the Clean Water Act, although Congress overrode his attempt to cancel our right to clean water. more recently, Donald Trump was quite proud that the first consequential piece of legislation he signed was a resolution that allowed coal mining companies to dump their waste directly into rivers, flooding the water supplies of downriver cities with toxic mercury, cadmium and other substances that are neurologically destructive to children.

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Thom Hartmann is a Project Censored Award-winning New York Times best-selling author, and host of a nationally syndicated daily progressive talk program on the Air America Radio Network, live noon-3 PM ET. His most recent books are "The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight," "Unequal Protection: The Rise of Corporate Dominance and the Theft of Human Rights," "We The People," "What Would Jefferson Do?," "Screwed: The Undeclared War Against the Middle (more...)

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