LaClair: Is our country heading toward fascism?

To the Editor:

Kudos to Andrew Miller on his letter on personal responsibility and the natural environment. Though I disagree with him on policy details, his commitment to the environment and to a sustainable future are refreshing — tragically so.

Eighty years ago, our fathers, grandfathers and great-grandfathers were fighting to defend our country and the world from Nazism and fascism. Today, a major political party is trying to turn the country into a fascist state.

Part of their mantra is that it’s all about individual rights. Yet they are the first to deny religious freedom to people like me, and personal freedom to women — and everyone to control their own bodies. They are the first to express outrage when someone speaks the truth about our country’s history of racism and genocide, and have even gone so far as to ban books.

How can the history of book-banning escape them? Do they really want our country to turn to Nazism, fascism or white supremacy? Do they really wish that the South had won the Civil War?

Tragically, the answer appears to be yes.

Mr. Miller is far kinder that I would be about these issues. My religion says it isn’t all just about me. My opinions and beliefs are not only my concern, because they shape my actions. I am part of something greater than myself. We all are. Yet we have a political movement gaining power in our country that would deny that, whenever it is convenient.

Ironically, our country’s dominant religion formally endorses the idea that it isn’t just about us individually. But too many of its adherents do not live it.

We are in a cultural civil war. I hope it does not turn into a civil war like the one of the 1860s. However, if fighting a war is what it takes to preserve, or restore, a commitment to ideals like liberty and justice for all, then so be it.

What is wrong with the people who do not see this?

Paul LaClair

Learn more about the writer ...

Paul L. LaClair | Kearny

Paul L. LaClair is a Kearny resident and is a frequent contributor to The Observer's opinion page.