On Friday Twitter was all aflutter with a legal hearing regarding Marjorie Taylor Greene's eligibility to run in this year's election. Plenty of liberals and progressives were electrified by the idea that she would be disqualified for having encouraged an insurrection, a violation of the 14th Amendment. I was shocked that anyone could actually think such a thing would happen.
The past six years should have been a massive wakeup call to liberals that invoking rules and process against a rising fascist movement is a futile strategy. The Mueller Report showed that Trump's campaign got help from Russian intelligence, and nothing happened. His followers tried to overthrow the government with his coordination and Trump wasn't even removed from office. The January 6th committee keeps uncovering more and more evidence of Trump's involvement with the attempt to steal the election, and that has also resulted in, you guessed it, nothing. In the meantime, the courts so many liberals think are their friends have been stocked with Trump loyalists and conservative ideologues.
The underlying problem is that so many affluent white liberals are naturally inclined to see The Law and Institutions in a positive light because those things have always worked on their behalf. They are constitutionally incapable of seeing them as malign forces. And so they watch while red states obliterate trans rights and go McCarthy on public schools and put their hands on their hips and ask indignantly "How can they DO that?"
Well they can because that's how power operates. There is no moral arc to this universe, which is completely indifferent to good and evil. Dr King's famous lines were meant to give hope in a difficult time but so many today interpret them to mean they don't actually have to do the work because progress will somehow magically keep happening without them having to do a damn thing to bring it about.
It is a poisonous mentality, especially when democracy is under direct threat. The solution is not to "go high" but to organize and fight. This is about power, taking it and using it for good ends. When the wrong people get power The Rules become whatever they want them to be. This is a lesson more liberals need to heed. Stop wondering "how can they do this" and go out and create a new political reality before it's too late.