The impeachment trial was not about the President himself or his alleged wrongdoings. It was not even about his shortcomings. It was about the vision of America that he represents.
The bizarre impeachment drama is over, and most Americans still cannot make sense of it. The exhausting proceedings took America on an emotional roller coaster ride providing an experience that was, to paraphrase Shakespeare, “full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”
Thus, most people blocked the hearings out of their lives. They hoped the issue would go away, and life could return to normal. As the trial ends, some naively assume that there might be some rest from the vitriol before the grueling new election cycle begins.
However, this sinister drama is not going away. There are many reasons to believe that this insanity is here to stay.
A Vision of America on Trial
It is not the case to judge the merits of the impeachment trial. It has already been decided and is not going to change. However, the partisan outcome indicates that this was a political, not legal decision. The two sides coalesced around differing visions of America that cannot be reconciled.
Thus, the impeachment was not about the President himself or his alleged wrongdoings. It was not even about his shortcomings. It was about the vision of America that he represents.
This vision is far from ideal since it includes many elements of the decadence that has brought the country to its present crisis. It will not solve the moral crisis that is now far advanced. However, this vision of a prosperous, materialistic American way of life still resonates in vast regions of the nation.
This vision does not resonate among liberals who want a different America. Those who are obsessed with abortion hate this first vision. Those who follow the religion of climate alarmism deplore this prosperous, carbon-friendly America. This vaguely moral vision of America does not resonate with Drag Queen Story Hour activists calling for the destruction of all moral barriers that restrain the disordered passions.
Beyond Normal Politics
This clash between these two Americas has long existed. What makes the present episode different is that it has now reached a breaking point with conservatives precariously in power. The liberals see that the victory of President Trump’s vision of America must be defeated by any means possible. Its mere existence cannot be tolerated.
This clash explains the intolerance and vitriol that is found in the policies of the liberal left since the last general election. It explains the constant obstruction and hype that have surrounded this administration. In light of this clash, so much fake news and commentary of liberal media make sense. All stops must be pulled out to play this painful cacophony.
Tragically, these tactics extend far beyond the normal disagreements that are part and parcel of politics. They now threaten the future of America as a nation.
Making America Ungovernable
The present debate represents something very different from anything that has come before. It is no-holds-barred politics. It is a free-for-all out there.
The twisted liberal logic of the present moment is that if this vision of America cannot be immediately defeated, then let the nation be made ungovernable. Dissect every word and telephone call. Let agencies and functionaries sabotage and leak information. Exploit every scandal. Destroy protocols and institutions. Let the government be “Antifa-ed” by the “Resistance” within.[*]
This has been the consistent policy of the liberal left; the impeachment is only the latest act in this macabre tragedy. Making America ungovernable should be recognized for what it is: sedition, and where national security is harmed, treason.
An Irrational Debate
What makes this clash so alarming is its almost irrational nature. It is as if the major characters no longer think it important to convince public opinion to take up their cause. The goal is not to persuade but to impose, not to reason but to emote.
Those engineering the impeachment, for example, didn’t seem to care if they appeared deplorable; they welcomed it. Every step of the way seemed designed to provoke and stoke passions against them. The proceedings were illogical, secretive, arrogant . . . and exhausting.
This new radical left makes no effort to please the other side. It shows an Antifa-like disregard for those structures of order and civil discourse that have long preserved the American union from chaos. In its desire to destroy, everything must be sacrificed.
A Dangerous Situation
Some might object that such an analysis is unduly biased against the left. However, it is hard not to come to this conclusion based on the wild drama the nation just witnessed.
The debate has given rise to something rarely seen in American politics. A large sector of the public seethes with hatred for the opposing one. It labels the opposition as racist and intolerant. This sector is willing to break any rules to achieve its ends, goading and provoking the opposition to respond violently. Since it is denied government, it seems determined to set fire to the nation.
The key to opposing this destructive behavior is to control the narrative. Those who love and defend order and the rule of law must see the left’s psy-war clearly, and avoid it like a tar-baby. They should recognize the real clash between two visions of America. They should sidestep the provocations, and peacefully and legally denounce the “Antifazation” of government that makes governing impossible.
Above all, they must have the courage to think beyond a materialistic vision of America. They should return to the perennial moral values that will make America virtuous and once again governable.
Republished with gracious permission from Return to Order.
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[*] James R. Bascom, “Not ‘Resistance,’ but Subversion Against God’s America,” The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property, January 23, 2020.
The featured image is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic. The photo has been slightly modified for color and is attributed to Gage Skidmore (who does not necessarily support the views of this essay, nor the views of The Imaginative Conservative), courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.