November 16, 2016 10:00 AM
The appointment of Breitbart’s Steve Bannon, the Farrakkan of the far right, in a role once held by Karl Rove has landed with as much approval as wearing a Klan hat would at Confederate flag rally. People who were pissed off are bound to be more pissed off. Others who wanted distance from unquestionably racist symbolism are left sputtering.
Locally, calls to the offices of U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson and David Perdue objecting to a man the Washington Post is openly comparing to Joseph Goebbels has been overwhelming, staffers handling the phone load say.
And, reflecting the tone of things to come from the left, Congressman Hank Johnson released a strongly-worded statement in opposition.
“After running a vicious, racist and xenophobic campaign, President-elect Donald Trump is now putting a white nationalist anti-Semite as his chief strategist in the White House. It’s a troubling sign that the 45th president intends to further sow the seeds of hatred and bigotry than bring the American people together. There can be no accommodation, no collaboration – only resistance. I’m calling on all my fellow Georgia congressional colleagues to stand with me in condemning this appointment and demand that it be withdrawn.”
Personally, I think this makes up for Johnson’s “termites” comment from earlier this year, which was interpreted to be anti-Semitic. It’s hard to put up a stronger rhetorical marker than to frame cooperation with the Bannon appointment as an act of “collaboration.”
Writers are likening Bannon’s appointment to a political Milgram test of sorts. Bannon’s appointment is one more act in a series of escalating acts of horror. Our ability to recognize and react strongly against it diminishes with each successive act. The prior horrors become more acceptable as newer ones emerge. Eventually, we’ll push the button that shocks people to death, because we’ve been progressively inured against defiance.
Resist. Now. While there’s time.