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The Black Death Changed Medieval Society

We are entering the darkest time in modern American history. In the next six weeks, tens of thousands of people are going to die. We are in the second wave and are entering this from a very high baseline. Experts warned us repeatedly about this on TV, newspapers, and other media. The fact that a good number of Americans are ignoring this is troubling. Because the same experts have told us that social distancing and wearing masks will reduce the inevitable death toll. Let’s be clear here, many Americans are incapable, or unwilling, to put others before themselves. The virus reveals a culture that is sick, perhaps dying. This is one where the values of individuality have completely overwhelmed any values of a civic society. We are no longer about community and what makes us whole. This is also a culture that rejects expertise, science, or anything else that may conflict with the role of the individual. In other words, the individual is king.

it is also a dangerous view with extreme skepticism of all, including value systems. This is nihilism at its core, and the worst in this are actually members of the far-right and the religious right. They have a god, yes, and they are ultimately destructive of all they claim to believe in. Family, even life itself is at risk. Because the values we are witnessing reject expertise and science v

Not all Americans are falling into this extreme nihilism, where the only thing that matters is the individual at the expense of all else. Nor are most of us falling into the trap of the prosperity gospel practiced by many far-right Christians. Or even the very damaging, positive thinking that infects the president and his administration. But many Americans who follow the president and the current Republican Party are. This is why they chose to literally and figuratively die on not wearing a mask. The mask is a symbol of how wrong they are. Not wearing a mask is not just a symbol of false pride, but extremely destructive.

Is this something affecting most Republicans? At this point, we must say mostly. The ones who have rejected this extremely damaging value system have left the party. They either will sit this election out, or quite frankly are endorsing a Democrat in droves. Why? We are watching the collapse of a major national party. Yes, people have written this in the past. But now even retiring members of Congress are pointing to this reality. They remain conservative, but not Republicans. So after the election what will happen to the Party of Trump?

I will remind the reader that while the GOP has become more extreme in California, I expect to see this nationally. The GOP it is the third-largest party in the state. The second-largest party is not a party at all. It is the no party preference, the independent voters. California Republicans refuse to change to appeal to more Californians. While they have some strongholds, they have no hope of holding state-wide office. The level of crazy was rejected by voters.

I do not mean just during the upcoming elections. I suspect Democrats will sweep, the House, the Senate, and the White House. But this is not just about that political reality. Computer models tell us that we expect to see tens of thousands of Americans die in the next few months. The University of Washington model predicts around 400,000 deaths by the end of the year. Yet, many in the Republican Party are still acting as if this is not happening, or it is not that bad. They keep going back to the chestnut of personal responsibility but refuse to wear a mask. This is even after getting the disease. One thing President Donald Trump was correct is that Americans are tired and want to be left alone. This is part of that culture of personal responsibility that has utterly failed us. However, the only thing that matters is Donald J Trump. This, but only me matters attitude is not unique to him. We like to blame him for not modeling responsible behavior, and there is some to that. But it is not just Trump. The party only cares about the individual, not society. It is destructive to society. The Republican Party hates expertise and only loves one thing. It’s not the Church, or family. It’s the mighty dollar.

One has to wonder in what world were these people raised? A simple mask can save the lives of others. This is a fact they refuse to understand. If all of us wore masks, or at least ninety-five percent did, we could reduce that expected and horrific death rate by half. Yet. convincing many of the people who are tired to wear a mask is near impossible. Let’s be honest, many of them refused this reality from the beginning. This is nihilist at its core, and deeply destructive. We are watching this in real-time, and the president’s diagnosis and later fight for his life is instructive of this nihilism. He survived, thanks to experimental treatments not available to the rest of us. Yet, he keeps denying the reality of the virus.

if Trump was a private citizen, he would not have gotten that care. There is a good chance he would have become another statistic. Instead of understanding reality, he keeps in that deep denial. More than just the treatment, there is another marker to the selfishness of the president and his followers. We have yet to learn when was the last time he got tested before his diagnosis. I suspect he was already under the weather the day of the first debate. In the age of Trump that should be a scandal, but we have had so many over the last four years that this is only a day ending in Y at this point. But he and his people did not care about the health of others.

Trump only cares about Donald Trump. We know this not just from watching him, but also from his niece, Mary, and a slew of former staffers who have come up with all tell books. What about the Republican Party? Well, I hope the judges and the tax cuts were worth losing their soul because this is where we are. The party could very well be on the edge of a national collapse that could rival the Whigs. And to be honest, it could not happen to nicer people.

However, many in the party base may finally wake up to the manipulation in these very dark times. To people who only care about themselves, family dying from COVID might be the only thing that wakes them up. None is wishing this on any of these people. But exponential case growth in red America is where we are. Hundreds of thousands will die because the same people who want to be over COVID refuse to wear a mask.

It is time for the rest of us to shun these people. They are a minority. But they are also an angry minority, living in a highly destructive far-right media environment. We need to rebuild civil society, and they do stand in the way. They are destructive for the rest of us. People like that have always been among us. Usually, they do not gain political power because of this. Yes, our crazy uncles have taken over a national party.

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