Leonard Pitts Jr. recently wrote about the U.S. being under attack by right-wing terrorists. I agree with him that we have to acknowledge that homegrown extremist threat.
But we can’t just focus on the danger of gun-toting extremists. We also have right-wing radicals in our midst who don’t carry guns, but do great harm to U.S, citizens with their political agenda and budget-slashing “terrorism.”
Many of these right-wing radicals claim to have Christian beliefs, but their actions and values go against the teachings of Jesus regarding compassion, altruism and justice. Instead of serving others, they praise Ayn Rand, who idealized selfishness in her novels. Worst of all, many of these extremists are powerful players in the Republican Party and as such are a threat to millions.
The budgetary terrorism of Rand-publicans will lead to the rich getting more of everything: corporate subsidies, deregulated industries, tax breaks and political power. Meanwhile, the rest of us — the majority — will have to do with less: Less jobs, less tax relief, less educational opportunities, less health care.
Sadly, these Rand-publican extremists are generally people who have had every advantage in life (family money, good education, good health care, white skin, political power) but feel it necessary to attack funding for important government programs, particularly those that improve the lives of those who are struggling to get out of poverty or to avoid slipping into poverty.
With their budgetary violence, these right-wing radicals are taking from those with the least in order to give themselves more. They don’t care how many children die of asthma in pollution-choked cities, or how many grandmas eat cat food. They just care about their pile of riches.
Often, when we disagree with someone, we say they’re stupid. But I know that while these right-wing extremists don’t have hearts, they do have brains. They are cunning and calculating. They are strategizing how to get the most for themselves while manipulating others to support them.
To turn the tables on the Rand-publicans and undermine their greedy plans, we must be equally cunning. Among other things, we must vote in larger numbers than ever before.
Everyone has to vote, the rich, the poor, the Anglos, the Latinos, the old, the young. We have to wipe out budgetary violence with a tidal wave of compassion, cooperation and civic engagement.
Flush budgetary terrorism. Wipe out extremism. Be a voter.