The Mythology of USA Wake Up
Just as the Republican blogosphere has allowed itself to be tricked into promoting the bizarre, anti-flag, satan-obsessed, football-hating, star-fearing conspiracy theories of Celeste and Loren Davis, so too have they fallen prey to a fantasy known as USA Wake Up.
USA Wake Up (at USAWakeUp.org – no link juice for the wacko right wingers) presents a very frightening picture, just like Loren Davis Ministries does. And just as Loren Davis Ministries has fostered a frightening portrait of Barack Obama in order to achieve political ends, so too USA Wake Up has created its own frightening picture to achieve political ends.
USA Wake Up presents the following scenario: Islamic terrorists have infiltrated the United States, setting up organizations across the United States. Even a member of Congress is in league with them. Despair, America, for the terrorist doomsday is at hand!
Republican blogs have begun to repeat this message, referring people to USA Wake Up, and fretting, Whatever are we to do? The terrorists are here, all over the United States, ready to strike, and the Democrats refuse to act!
The thing is that it’s all just a fantasy. The terrorists are not here. The scenario described by USA Wake Up is not at all real. The following disclaimer is found on the web site:
“The above scenario is a fictitious representation of what could be in store for America. It is not intended to be taken as a true event (yet anyway). This fictitious representation is taken from what is actually happening in Europe, and is currently taking some root in this country. Although we have not yet reached this extreme, we could in the near future if this country does not wake up, and wake up soon.”
Apparently, Republican bloggers aren’t very good at reading. They’re spreading the “information from USA Wake Up as if it is real. Bud Simmons of the blog Thoughts of A Conservative Christian, for example, writes breathlessly that USA Wake Up, “clearly defines where the Muslims have set up Al-Queada terrorist cells in all but a few states!”
Dear me. All it takes is a calm mind to think and to read, and claims like this are easily disspelled. It’s a frightening idea to me that so many Republican bloggers aren’t inclined to think calmly about USA Wake Up, and are jumping to conclusions, accepting a fantasy as an accurate representation of reality.
Isn’t that what USA Wake Up is designed for, though? Lacking any actual sign of terrorist plots within the United States that would justify the never-ending Code Orange Alerts and the assembly of laws such as the Patriot Act and Military Commissions Act that have reduced the Bill of Rights to a zombie of its former self, these Republicans come up with a fantasy of terrorist infiltration, and then act as if it is true.
The reason they do so is that they want it to be true. They want there to be terrorists all over the United States. They want there to imminent peril to American lives.
They want it because they feel lost unless they have an easily-to-define enemy. They want it because they don’t grasp the world of complexities in which constitutional freedoms actually provide better long term security than a draconian police state. They want it because they feel uncomfortable with Americans expressing dissent from government opinions. They want to go back to the days of United We Stand. They liked it when everyone in America felt afraid, because everyone felt afraid together, and all ambiguity was gone. It was a simple way of thinking about the world, and that made them feel good.
So, they’ve invented a mythology of threats that don’t exist, from Loren Davis’s absurd visions of Barack Obama as an undercover spy for Osama Bin Laden, to the 24 TV show (which would actually be rather boring if it depicted the reality of an antiterrorist agent’s life), to the pseudoreality of USA Wake Up.
If the Republicans want to live in that fantasy land of perpetual terrorist peril, that’s their right. I think it’s unwise, however, if Americans allow the Republican fantasyland thrills to determine how they vote in the presidential election of 2008. For that reason, I propose giving Republicans a separate fantasy Election Day.
Those Republicans who thrill to the feeling of their fantasy that terrorists are hiding behind every garbage can across America can have their own Fantasy Election Day. They don’t need to turn out to vote on Tuesday, November 4th. They can go pretend to vote at pretend polling stations on Wednesday, November 5th. They can call it Wake Up Patriot Election Day, and sleep through the real Election Day.