Fred Reed, whom we've met in these pages many times before, puts his finger on the pulse of much of the nation in his latest column. I think he's very accurate in his summation. Here's an excerpt.
The furor over the Confederate flag, think I, has little to do with the Confederate flag, which is a pretext, an uninvolved bystander. Rather it is about a seething anger in the United States that we must not mention. It is the anger of people who see everything they are and believe under attack by people they aren’t and do not want to be—their heritage, their religion, their values and way of life all mocked and even made criminal.
The talking heads inside Washington’s beltway, in editorial suites in New York, do not know of this anger. They do not talk to people in Joe’s Bar in Chicago or in barbecue joints in Wheeling. They are cloistered, smug, sure of themselves. And they are asking for it.
We are dealing with things visceral, not rational. Confusing the two is dangerous. Hatreds can boil over as syllogisms cannot.
. . .
What is the anger about? Most visibly, but far from uniquely, race: the illegals, the Knock-Out game, and Washington’s protection of both. The racial hostility that pervades the country today is largely the doing of the talking heads and its perverse social policies. The rancor is unlike anything I have seen.
. . .
It wasn’t this way, but it is now. It is getting worse. But there is far more than race. We now are compelled to live in a national sexual-freak show. Day after day after day the media are full of trans-this and trans-that, of homosexual marriages, all thrust in our faces, a parade of prancing peculiarities demanding and demanding and demanding. People who dare not say so are sick of it.
. . .
And crime is out of control, protected by a President and Attorney General with whom we, so many Americans, have nothing in common, who dislike us, and who want to disarm us and flood our country with illegal and incompatible aliens.
. . .
Then there is the de-Christianizing of the country. Religion, both historically and currently, is a potent thing. Play with it at your risk.
. . .
Stoking the flames under the pressure cooker is the unending, ever-tightening control of every aspect of life by Washington. People inside the city’s beltway, a venue I know well, do not understand what they are playing with. They are sure that they know best, and they are going to make us toe the line.
. . .
What if one day we don’t?
There's much more at the link. Highly recommended reading.
I think Fred is on to something very important. I've seen similar reactions from many people I know and like - a growing determination to do as they see fit with their lives and their children's lives, to simply ignore Washington DC's dictates and spit in their eye if they try to insist. I know individuals who've said to me openly that they're ready to start shooting if any Federal government bureaucrat tries to intrude any further into their lives. Admittedly, these are people who've had to deal with such intrusions on a far larger scale than most of us (farmers, small business owners, etc.), but their anger and frustration are palpable. The thought that a business can be punished because its owners insist on running it in accordance with their religious principles is anathema to them. They've reached a point of refusing to go along with Big Brother any longer.
This is the basic difference between statists and libertarians. Statists believe that government is the answer. Just pass more laws, more regulations, more administrative measures, and you can sort out society. Libertarians regard government as the problem. They want to minimize its invasiveness, regulate only what's absolutely necessary, and let people make up their own minds about the rest. Statists believe that what is not explicitly permitted, is forbidden. Libertarians believe that what is not explicitly forbidden, is permitted (which is how our constitution is written, if you take a careful look at it). I find myself far more in the libertarian camp than the statist.
What if Fred's right? What if a growing groundswell of popular opinion and emotion is saying, "So far, but no further!"? Frankly, I don't know that we have any alternative if we're to stop the Washington mafia from forcing yet more unacceptable measures down our throats. Even more than debate over the Confederate battle flag or gay marriage, I suspect the current push for immigration reform (which might be better described as "surrender to illegal aliens") may be a turning-point for many. I'm a legal immigrant myself, but when I see our infrastructure overwhelmed by illegals, their crimes multiplying like weeds, their pressure on our society disrupting normal everyday existence . . . I say "Enough!" A lot of people do. I think this may be the "trigger issue" that finally galvanizes people into action.