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The cover story of the Christian Science Monitor this week really addresses the foundations of the violence of America. They pride themselves on being moderate and unbiased, but this article was really hard for them to write. They are committed to telling the truth, and this is a harsh reality of America. "America has a violence problem...America is the most homicidal rich country in the world... "

https://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Society/2023/0602/Untangling-the-roots-of-violence-What-can-we-learn-from-the-South

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About the guns: your piece explains that perfectly, as well. It now has nothing to do with the NRA. The perceived Leftist threat to the White hierarchy, and the need to quash it, is so compelling that any collateral damage - even to family members - from the accumulation of weaponry is worth the price. There will be no massacre too large. What I'm still not quite grasping is the lengths to which they will go to try to maintain plausible deniability -- that, no, the shooter was not a white nationalist! We're protecting the children! Why the fig leafs?

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Thank you for another immensely clarifying piece, Dr. Zimmer. As Ms. Reil notes, I, too, was so pleased to see you on the Reidout and, frankly, surprised that we've not seen you more often (at all?), as your clarifying message deserves to be aired weekly if not daily.

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Sorry some of my first comment is disjointed. Workman here today, correcting a serious problem....much banging & clanging...& queries from those I'm grateful are fixing things.

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Those who use religion, whatever incarnation, to manipulate, mislead or enslave others with its tenants, are truly depraved.

What such as these, there is no conflict, no damage, to their souls nor to others. The truth is, they are the most terrified people on earth. And the most lazy. They refuse to learn about other ways of believing or being. If they bothered to do that, they would discover that Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, indeed all the world's religions, differ only in the object of devotion & its rituals. Whether you attend a church, mosque, synagogue or other place of worship, chant, or pray in private or go into the woods & marvel at the wonders of the universe, you are pausing to acknowledge & be grateful for our lives & the abundance that the universe.

Every one of these ways of considering the world, the universe beyond ourselves & have the same imperative, the same ultimate command---to love one another with kindness of thought, word & deed. The Ten Commandmants tells us what constitutes failure to uphold that ultimate command. I am no religious scholar, but I know the Koran, the Torah, the teachings of Shakyamuni Buddha contain instructions for us for living in peace & abundance. Different words, yet the same end ---love one another.

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I ride the NY subway and you are way off base. Some street people terrify you and this is bound to happen again. I am no right winger but I will protect myself from ANY aggression. THIS WAS NOT A LYNCHING. This is NY on a bad day.

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By "protect yourself from ANY aggression" it sounds like you mean you'd kill someone for yelling. I'm going to guess that the same cowardice that makes you terrified by people yelling will continue to keep you from doing anything about it, thankfully.

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Yeah, and it's hard to express this without coming across as a "sky is falling" hysteric. You did a good job.

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Thank you so much for your knowledge and hard work. Whenever I get an email alert that you’ve submitted a writing, I get immediately excited to read it.

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If we are going to confine ourselves within our borders for references, we are looking at a summer of 1919 cycle. Right wing groups are organizing for political power across the nation. Local violence against a despised social class is a key butress of the strategy. They are tuned in to and spurred on by a new media format that has allowed for mass communication and propaganda proliferation. The pump is further primed by loosening carry laws while adding more disarming felonies for normal political activity the left has prefered.

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May 15, 2023Liked by Thomas Zimmer

I am glad this piece is getting some attention. Nice to see you on Joy Reid’s show tonight.

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I’ve gotta check that out!

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Your mention of US history (in the passage about Weimar vibes) brought to mind the way "race riots" -- that were really white attacks on Black neighborhoods - functioned as vigilante enforcement of segregated housing patterns (in northern cities) during the first half of the 20th century.

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From my perspective, it seems clear that we've passed the point of 'no return'. State-sanctioned vigilantism is the final red line, which has now been crossed.

The lack of legal accountability for members of Congress who enabled or encouraged the insurrection, Trump, Trump's inner circle and Cabinet appointees has allowed the right-wing narrative to be cemented such that it's now impervious to facts.

Nothing that Garland or Willis does at this point will change the calculus.

Millions of people will continue to opt out of the voting process because they're unaware of the stakes, in no small part because Democratic leadership continues to downplay the extraordinary danger, MSM largely continues to deny the perilous abyss we face, and corporations seem to have missed every history lesson of the power shifts under dictatorships.

Many grassroots organizations are working extremely hard to preserve pockets of democracy, and many lower courts still function as a bulwark against fascism, but we haven't seen the societal protests/strikes that are prevalent in other countries.

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May 15, 2023Liked by Thomas Zimmer

Excellent piece. I may not be fully able to articulate the “what” of your closing question, but the “how” is crystal clear: the right wing media machine stokes fear of the left and other out groups by activating the amygdala; convince people their way of life is at stake & that they must become soldiers to defend it; put lethal weapons into their hands; sow chaos & fear.

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