Disavowal and Denouncement: Political Entrapment in Contemporary U.S. Discourse

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During the presidential elections the now 45th President of the United States was asked numerous times to “disavow” the white nationalist radio host and author, Dr. David Duke. Duke is, and has been, a kind of ideological bogeyman for both the established political Left and Right in America for decades due to his former ties to the Ku Klux Klan, a group which, in the past, has resorted to terrorism and called for the racial “purification” of American society. Those pundits who poised the question, “Will you disavow, KKK Grand Wizard, David Duke?” seemingly wished to persuade their listeners into believing that Dr. Duke was still leading the Klan in some kind of burgeoning, jack-booted racial supremacist, paramilitary vanguard which would sound the clarion call of civil war and a fiery end to The Republic. Such notions were, and still are, patently absurd, as anyone without severe cognitive impairment should be able to realize.

For instance, the talking heads who constantly bombarded the president with the question, “Will you disavow,” ever failed to mention that Dr. Duke promoted non-violent protest, allowed women to enter the movement in a active role for the first time since it’s inception and consistently described the Klan under his leadership as, “Not anti-black, but pro-white.” They also never mentioned the fact that Duke left the Klan in 1980 when various chapter members ignored his peaceful reformations and took to radical and thuggish action. Duke described the subsequent Klan crimes as, “Violent and stupid.”

1980 was 37 years ago and yet the white hooded specter persists as a dominant force in political and social discourse.

Naturally, after some cajoling, Mr. Trump did indeed disavow Duke, though he had done so before as early as 2000 during a television interview with NBC news in which he called Dr. Duke “-a bigot, a racist, a problem. I mean, this is not exactly the people you want in your party.” But what absolutely no one in the mainstream media nor in almost any alternative outlets said is that he should not have disavowed Dr. Duke.

“Why?” you might rightly ask – the answer is extraordinarily simple: Trump never made a vow to him to begin with. This follows rather axiomatically, if you have not made a vow to X one can not rightly disavow X. Additionally, Dr. Duke is as much an American as me or any of the rest of the U.S. Citizenry and the president’s job is to represent all of the people of the Republic, not just the one’s whom he likes. Representation, much like free speech, is not a card game where one picks and chooses which cards are to be withheld and which discarded from the hand. America is in no classically definable way a nation (despite the currently perceived paradigm of Nationalism vs. Globalism), but rather, a Empire. This is crucial to statecraft as political annexation of whole bodies of a populace make a certain sense in nations but may indeed make a certain sense to some among the ruling class of an empire – but in an empire the toll of internecine division is far steeper given the inherently in-cohesive nature of the societal fabric. Therefore, the push-back against this disavowal syndrome should be two-fold, first morally: It is immoral to declare that the ruling class shall not represent the lower classes simply due to ideological disagreement (to the degree that such disagreements do not promote or cause one to engage in violent civil disobedience) when they have pledged to do precisely the opposite as such action is, in no uncertain terms, hypocritical.

Consider also that in no other sphere of discourse, and in relation to no other topics outside of the Klan or National Socialist or “white supremacists,” do people ask others to denounce and disavow people and groups to which no pledge has been made and no offer of allegiance given. Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sander’s presidential campaign rallies were often populated with vocal, true-blue communists (a political ideology which has caused far more havoc and destruction than National Socialism ever has or is likely to) – yet where then were the cries of disavowal? Nowhere. Such affiliations are permissible precisely because they are not so different from the established ethos. And why should this surprise anyone, after all, for decades the United States has been governed by Communistic progressive ethics and Socialist economic planning, the steps needed to descend into full blown Communism are far fewer than many might think as the recent string of college protests and resurgent and increasingly violent AntiFa vigilantism well attest. Such incidents are instructive because they show that simple pointing out the logical inconsistencies in the opponent’s arguments are wholly insufficient. Argumentation has failed utterly and it has failed utterly because those who would challenge the progressive machine all too often do so from a position of egalitarian debate, that is, the assumption that one’s opponent actually wants to have their arguments deconstructed. Reasoned discourse is simple not enough and where it fails emotional argumentation must be deployed. If one asserts something as true and it is factually so and one’s opponents, these mealy mouthed,  do-you-disavowers respond with defamatory remarks it is the duty of every sane and rational citizen to respond: You are not only factually incorrect, but morally deficient!
Shame shall be the wages of their sin.

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