It Didn’t Work 50 Years Ago


The rhetoric never changes. As I looked through some of the almost 50-year-old material, I kept from my battles with the John Birch Society it is interesting how similar the focal points are compared to the Reich Wing proponents of extremism of today.

Back in the day it was Sex Education and all who supported it.  Organizations such as SIECUS (Sex Information and Education Council of the U.S.) were seen as the instruments of the devil. The NEA, the National Council of Churches and leaders in many of the mainline denominations were seen as and presented as enemies. Woven through all of the rhetoric was the “Communist Conspiracy” that every institution and organization espousing ideas and planning programs that were focused on social justice and advancing solutions to societal problems had been infiltrated and were being controlled by “known communists.” It doesn’t take much imagination to see the similarities in what Fox News Corp. and Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck promote and the lunacy of the JBS.

Never mind that “Communism” is an archaic and irrelevant idea, never mind that the hysterics of the Birchers has long since been proven misguided and just simply wrong. Never mind that, as a society, we have made great strides toward a more perfect union and a more inclusive society. The aim, the goal of the Reich Wing is still as it was then, dismantle all social programs, discredit and exterminate all progressive ideas from society, eliminate liberalism by whatever means necessary.

My hope is this. It didn’t work 50 years ago. There is no reason to assume it will work today. If we, progressive liberal citizens of these United States, get up off our collective butts and stand for what is right, just and inclusive.

Don Nelson

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