Liberals love to quote Sinclair Lewis’ line that “when fascism comes to America, it will be draped in the flag and carrying a cross.” Lewis was wrong. We have had the flag and Christianity for over 200 years, but we have not had fascism.
To the contrary, when fascism comes to America, it will look something like the reaction to the Tea Parties. I do not mean the lunatic rants of the netroots. That’s fine. Mockery, hyperbole, and distortion are not the exclusive province of any one political party or ideology. I also do not mean counter-protests. That is fine too.
Fascism is not the exercise of free speech, even offensive free speech. Rather, it is the attempt to silence others through subversion and physical disruption. Think brown shirts in pre-war Germany, and anarchists at almost any world economic meeting. And that is what the Tea Party Crasher phenomenon is all about.
As detailed by Michelle Malkin and others, various groups (mostly from the left, but also from the right) plan to disrupt the Tea Parties by subterfuge. Pretending to be participants to disrupt. Making inflammatory accusations not to express an opinion, but to get the Tea Parties off course or to create a video-opportunity. Co-opting the Tea Parties for another purpose. Phony ambush “interviews” by people pretending to be journalists merely to elicit a reaction. Conduct on the streets similar to the trolls on the internet, who create havoc for the purpose of creating havoc and disrupting the free speech of others.
When fascism comes to America, it will not be wrapped in the flag or carrying a cross. It will look like it always has looked: Ugly and intolerant.
UPDATE: See what I mean?
UNC-CH police released pepper spray and threatened to use a Taser on student protesters Tuesday evening when a crowd disrupted a speech by former Colorado congressman Tom Tancredo opposing in-state tuition benefits to unauthorized immigrants.
Hundreds of protesters converged on Bingham Hall, shouting profanities and accusations of racism while Tancredo and the student who introduced him tried to speak. Minutes into the speech, a protester pounded a window of the classroom until the glass shattered, prompting Tancredo to flee and campus police to shut down the event.
Here’s the video (h/t Paul Chesser). Things get crazy at the 2 minute mark when protesters take over the podium with a large banner “No One Is Illegal,” and again at the 7 minute mark as the organizers leave. Marching under the banner of “No Human is Illegal,” the students chant “shut it down, no racists in our town.” I didn’t see a single flag or cross.
Here is another video from the hallway outside the room (h/t Gateway Pundit):
UPDATE No. 2: Michelle Malkin has more video and links.