Decrying authoritarian turns is inadequate

Leading Republicans just formally condoned the use of force and violence to advance political and social aims. That may or may not surprise you, but it does make very clear that a large faction of Americans will support, contribute to, or simply be silent to future treason and coups.

The willingness to use violence to secure power is itself an abandonment of the rule of law and a violation of the rights that so many have fought to realize and encode in our culture. Demonstrations of power which strategically or tragically devolve to violence will become more common, and the Republican Party leadership believes that such a course is just and necessary to meet their goals.

Supporting this party locally and nationally is feeding into inevitable violence, as well as the notion that power and money are more important than rights, life and liberty.

But more importantly, we must realize that simply lementing and decrying such a course does nothing to stifle it. And we must recognize that outsourcing our power and responsibilities to the Democratic Party — in its current form — is unlikely to produce anything but meager and inadequate gains.

To break the gridlock of legislative inaction in Wisconsin and the obstruction of progress nationally, America needs a movement of independent populist power dedicated to representing the interests and needs of people. With support from across the social and political spectrum, and fueled by honest deliberation and in search of broad consensus, I believe such an effort can heal our society.

We have the choice — today and at every moment hereafter — to accept divisive political culture and its detrimental outcomes, or to act with intention to set common goals for the good of all people.