MAGA thought-leaders and influencers have been advocating the idea of invoking the 1807 Insurrection Act to deploy the military to keep Trump in power. Such authoritarianism is the logical conclusion of embracing the “us vs. them” rhetoric of Fox News, GOP leaders, and conspiracy theories like QAnon and election fraud.

Fox News positions itself as the “fair and balanced” counterweight to an allegedly biased mainstream media. Their most popular hosts elevate attacking the “liberal media” and “the radical Left” to an art form. GOP leaders parrot these talking points as articles of faith. Right-wing social media amplify the “us vs. them” faith with the “truth” of conspiracy theories, like Democrats running a child pedophilia ring and stealing the election. Now hardcore MAGAs advocate an actual coup to stop an imagined one.

When you think your in-group, your “us,” is locked in an existential battle with a dangerous out-group, an evil “them,” then you’ll be willing to destroy a few democratic norms and commit a little violence to achieve the all-important victory. You’ll find any way to justify the moral trade-off.

Writer tackling faith, politics, relationships, writing, media, & other impolite topics. College Teacher. Podcaster. My newsletter:

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