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Josh Shapiro, Obama, Biden, and Fetterman at a rowdy rally Saturday in Philadelphia. Photo by Ed JONES / AFP via Getty Images

Everything We Could

Abby Zimet

Arghh. Talk about fear and loathing. We are so paralyzed by pre-election dread we can't seem to focus on anything else except urging everyone to VOTE! like your and many others' lives depend on it, because...yes, it could, though damn what a puny, lonesome, fragile weapon we've been handed to battle a rising tide of fascist Christian theocracy. Choir-preaching, we know, but here are some random reminders from the recent past of who the creeps are we're fighting, what kind of crap they pull so regularly we've now alas grown somewhat inured to it - shock is exhausting - and why it matters.

A report made public by Dem. Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon details "twisted efforts" before the 2020 election to bolster "baseless conspiracy theories" about an imaginary "terrorist" "organization" of "Antifa." Though they didn't exist, that didn't stop the former malevolent clown and his slimy acting-because-he'd never-get-confirmed head of Homeland Security Chad Wolf from amassing secret dossiers on perhaps thousands of people peaceably protesting after the murder of George Floyd, with agents collecting info on subjects' pasts, friends and "interests," including dangerous "First Amendment activities." 

In Wisconsin, meanwhile, righteous culture warriors are going after the evils of "Marxism" in multiple school districts, where okay maybe "some students, because they're colored or whatever," are getting bullied, but that doesn't make it ok to talk about CRT, "micro-aggressions," "power structures," "restorative justice" or "systemic racism." Those concerns prompted a GOP-controlled legislature to pass a bill banning teachers from referencing "multiculturalism," "social justice" or "equity" - which is "where things start being a little bit sticky" - but the Dem governor vetoed it, because elections matter

Speaking of: In this week's frenzied run-up, Herschel Walker said he read that people who got student loans forgiven were "spending their money," though of course they didn't actually get any, on buying video games, going on vacation, gambling and drinking; little coked-up Donnie Jr. screamed that John Fetterman has "mush for brains," which Dems like; his bro Eric told a Nazi rally Dems want to destroy Christianity, our families, our children and our history: "Guys, this is a cognizant (sic) war in this country." But he is def not "a tinfoil hat-wearing guy," he told the tinfoil hat-wearing crowd.

Finally, Meidas Touch recalled all the times all these thugs threatened violence, though they and their media mouthpieces keep insisting they don't, and Ron DeathSantis' wife shared an unhinged, obscene ad claiming that on the 8th day God needed to save America and so "God made a fighter" - "I love you, Ron" - also a power-mad fascist who uses vulnerable migrants as pawns, passes bills denying health care to trans kids, terrorizes multiple "others" in the name of "freedom" and "will take the arrows (and) stand firm" because his white-guy arrogance and chutzpah have no limit.

In contrast, there was a Philadelphia rally, raucous and joyful, for good guys: Josh Shapiro, John Fetterman, Obama, Biden. A huge crowd, no hats, no hate. Good will and competence and actual ideals: "It's about the values we grew up with, who we are." And the  vow, "We won't go back." And a terrific ad, schmaltzy to be sure, but with apt nods to the Underground Railroad, Standing Rock, Stonewall, Selma. Resolutely focused on freedom for all, not just the few, and vitally recognizing we're far from there. What did you do to save our freedoms, it asks. Hopefully, desperately, everything we could. Have at it, please.



Abby Zimet

Abby Zimet

Abby Zimet has written CD's Further column since 2008. A longtime, award-winning journalist, she moved to the Maine woods in the early 70s, where she spent a dozen years building a house, hauling water and writing before moving to Portland. Having come of political age during the Vietnam War, she has long been involved in women's, labor, anti-war, social justice and refugee rights issues. Email:

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