♬ I must not think bad thoughts
I must not think bad thoughts
I must not think bad thoughts ♬
— When the dream police execute their no-knock warrant on your dirty mind, will they find you out of your head?
Your rarely temperate Weekend Politics Thread host has thoroughly lost his cool over newly installed Republican Virginia Gov. Glenn1 Youngkin’s launch of a snitch line for thought crimes and apostasy from the ruling party.
No, really. That happened. And you, too, can join the cavalcade of Mrs. Kravitzes who already availed themselves of this state-sanctioned opportunity to engage in domestic terrorism against truth-telling teachers. Simply fire up you email machine, point your peevishness at email@example.com, and ensure an expedition evolution of Elois.2
At best, this inflammatory inbox builds a contact list of committed racists and activist anti-intellectuals for the GOP to grift each election cycle. In a fantasy of Uvular’s most fervid imaginings, FBI agents monitor the messages for murder threats and other dangers to persons and the public.
In actuality, Youngkin intends to do four things:
- Scare teachers off of mentioning truths about the evils of race-based chattel slavery, the pernicious persistence of systemic racism, the naturalness of gender and sexual identities other than cis-het, the existence of non-fundamentalist Christian faiths, and the actual cause of the American Civil War.
- Build dossiers on “dissenters and troublemakers.”
- Establish a clippings file of (most likely untrue) outrages to cite while undermining traditional public school systems and pushing sectarian charter schools and vouchers for religious education.
- Turn the commonwealth into a Communist-era police state where each resident lives in fear of a neighbor informing on their unorthodoxies and heresies.
Youngkin and his henchpeople disavow all that, of course. The governor swears he wishes only to provide parents an outlet for expressing difference over curricular content. Pressed for actual details, administration officials refuse to disclose “who monitors the account, what steps are taken after reports are received and whether the governor’s administration plans to contact schools or educators mentioned in complaints.”
Uvular has lived in Virginia nearly his whole life. A vestigial form of Massive Resistance survived into his pre-K and kindergarten years. Pat Robertson’s outfit headquarters not but a few miles from Uvular’s boyhood and current homes. Uvular knows from reactionary politics and the toutings of theocracy. The Old Dominion has returned to the former in Richmond, and the later appears closer to coming to term than ever before.
A razor-thin majority of Democrats in the Virginia State Senate has thwarted the worst3 of the Republican agenda through the halfway point of the current legislative session. Pray, in a non-theocratic way, this Blue Wall holds until some sanity can prevail in 2023, when the out-of-sync Virginia state elections calendar flips once more. And, ye gods, take a Uve seriously the next time he raves on about a last stand for democracy itself in a Virginia election.
What happened in your state or country this week?