The closer we get to election time the more the lurking communist-left vs. nationalist-right undercurrent in American politics is going to assert itself. But as new as that might seem, the truth is America has been the battleground in a war between these two revolutionary collectivisms since our founding.
A consideration of the cause of liberty and the efforts to secure and preserve the idea of America in the context of that war opens up a whole new understanding of how that cause and effort is, and has been, undermined by not only the collective left and right, but by the war between them itself.
Unlike in Europe, American politics did at one time embody the struggle between the freedom of individual liberty and the slavery of collectivism, and maybe that’s where the hope for liberty lies. But even as America was declaring her independence, there were those who wanted to keep some of the king’s dictatorial powers over others, in the form of slavery. Their mission to keep these powers spawned their hostile interpretation of the Constitution as a pro-slavery document.
This has always been antithetical to our Constitution and the cause of liberty, as the Civil War would eventually prove.
Transcendentalists and homegrown communists such as Fourier, Owen, and Noyes were preaching their anti-Constitution, anti-God family and property utopianism by the early 1800s. And Henry George, whose land value tax is the emerging darling of the progressive left and right, wasn’t far behind.
By 1917, the progressive-right was rounding up the communist/anarchist-left for deportation via the Wilson administration’s Palmer Raids with famed revolutionary anarchist Emma Goldman being among them. The race riots during the Red Summer of 1919 killed hundreds and injured thousands more. The progressive-right was just as quick to blame communist agitation as the left is today when they blame the Constitution and our founding principles. Nevertheless, such revolutionary violence was indeed being instigated by communists worldwide.
In 1979, the Greensborough Massacre was the tragic result of a violent confrontation between Nazi/KKK nationalism and communism at a “Death to the Klan” rally of the Maoist Workers Viewpoint Organization.
More recently, similar deadly violent clashes between identitarian/Proud Boy nationalists and Antifa communists/anarchists have been making news from DC and NYC all the way to Portland, OR. And as the left itself will tell you, the right is also instigating revolutionary violence worldwide. If there is a World War III, it could very well be a fight between these two collectivisms.
Overt racism — denying certain people personhood and creating protected vs. unprotected classes of people — is generally associated with the nationalist-right. Yet the human/civil rights laws of the communist-left are defined by their denial of personhood to our unborn and their creation of protected classes.
“Positive” collective rights are justified only because of the left’s own interpretation of the Constitution as, once again, a pro-slavery document that establishes only an inherently oppressive and racist capitalism, white supremacy and privilege. This comes from the same narrative of America where the fundamentally Marxist disparate impact, implicit bias, and structural racism accusatory is derived. And it’s where most of contemporary criminal justice/prison reform is premised — from the left and the right.
It’s been recognized that the only reason any of the left’s progressive policies — New Deal, Great Society, Roe v. Wade, etc. — have been allowed to stand is due to a leftist populist extra-constitutional judicial supremacy overruling the Constitution in favor of them. Likewise, the right’s progressive policies — Dred Scott, free reign of the KKK, Jim Crow — would never have stood without the same extra-constitutional populist judicial supremacy doing the same for them.
Is it a coincidence that as a result of this war, liberty and our Republic have been compromised while both the collective-left and right have become stronger and even more entrenched? Slavery, structural racism, and denial of personhood are all part of American history, not because of liberty, our Constitution, or our founding principles, but because of the progressive-left/right’s identical hostile interpretation of them.
For the sake of the peace and liberty of us all, it’s time we get that straight!
Joe Marshall was born and raised in the Finger Lakes Region of Upstate NY. He is a married father of two grown sons, an outdoorsman, a landscape contractor, a former stock car owner and driver, a certified 4H firearms instructor, and a retired New York State corrections officer.
Joe is the author of the book, Last Call for Liberty