Letter: Xenophobia crumbling democracy – Times UnionJune 15, 2022
Xenophobia is the fear or hatred of strangers or foreigners or anything foreign or strange, according to the Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology 1966. We hear on the news that some in the Republican Party are xenophobic. Their behavior exhibits xenophobia including fear of the immigrant. As we know, our country is becoming more diverse every year. In the not too distant future, people of color will outnumber white people.
Looking at xenophobia, I wonder if some Americans feel fear of the Republican Party. I do. The xenophobic behavior of former President Donald Trump, Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, Sen. Lindsay Graham of S.C., Ginny Thomas, Fox News host Tucker Carlson and more are aggressively trying to take down our Democracy.
Kneeling at the altar of Trump are men and women, some listed above, who are greedy for power and have become foreigners to democracy. Xenophobia has come full circle. The Republican Party is afraid of losing power and many Americans are afraid of losing our Democracy.
Trump’s charisma draws people into his cult. As James Rothenberg pointed out in his letter “More to answer for with American exceptionalism,” March 27, “The founders were frightened by the idea of democracy and took pains to ensure that ordinary people —far outnumbering the elites — were constrained into a passive role.”
Today the ordinary still outnumber the elite and still have limited power. We live in a world governed by fear. In America, the rich fear the ordinary and the ordinary either join Trump’s cult and drink his poison or feel powerless in the face of the rich. Abraham Lincoln said, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” Is the infrastructure of our democracy beginning to crumble?
Mary Perrin Scott