A List to Remember
For reasons which are now irrelevant, I kept aloof of the Elian Gonzales affair - resisting, even, questions by journalists and radio talk show hosts. The circumstances and images of his arrest have changed all that.
When I was eight years old, an enormous hand gun was held to my head by a member of Hungary's Nazi party. (He suspected my mother of hiding food.) Earlier that year, and then again when I was twenty, I woke to dawn raids on Sundays by various socialist forces, first German then Russian.
A gun pointed at a child is a gun pointed at a child. And the Easter weekend in America is easily the equivalent of a Sunday in Hungary.
An American network, CNN, reporting merely that "Elian has been reunited with his father" is not much closer to the truth than Radio Moscow announcing in November 1956 that "counter-revolutionary elements in Hungary financed by the American imperialists have been beaten back by the progressive forces of the Peace Camp."
I shall therefore devote this column to an enumeration of other manifestations in today's American vocabulary and practices that remind me of socialist-occupied Hungary. May it awaken millions of decent, ordinary Americans who promote socialism unbeknownst to themselves - and may it expose those who do it deliberately.
We have adopted labels such as reactionary, progressive, capitalist, working people, exploiter, the oppressed, imperialist, racist (to which we added sexist and homophobe), warmonger, peace...(anything), private sector, politically correct, sensitivity training (read: indoctrination), social justice, economic justice (to which we added environmental justice).
We have recast our system of education by accepting that "It takes a village..." (which, rather than in some obscure African proverb, has its origins in the works of Anton Semionovich Makarenko, Lenin's education specialist), by introducing federal funding of public schools, dumbing down the curriculum, constantly changing terms of evaluation, and by introducing School-to-Work. The concepts that the state, rather than parents, decides what is best for young people, and that the young ought to inform on their parents were ultimately embodied in the Pioneer and Komsomol organizations of the Soviet Union and the Hitler Youth of the Third Reich.
We have created all sorts of new occupations such as judicial inquiry officer, affirmative action officer, sensitivity counselor, civil rights this that and the other - all of which has nothing to do with rights in the American mold, and everything to do with the position known as "political officer" where I grew up.
And where political officers roam, political crime is not far behind. Renamed "hate speech" and "hate crime," the utterly un-American concept of political crime has been successfully introduced in the land of the free.
We have begun to change the names of our streets, the names of our holidays, the days on which holidays are celebrated and, if the authors of National Standards for U.S. History have their way, we will change our calendar altogether by replacing B.C. and A.D. with "before and after common time."
We have introduced affirmative action and attendant preference quotas, originally conceived in the Soviet Union to manipulate admission to schools and hiring based on the class of the applicant's parents, as in "worker," "peasant," "capitalist." We have abandoned the quality standard and tolerate, increasingly, persons in positions for which they are not qualified. The cumulative damage to society has been devastating everywhere else, and even a country with America's vast reserves cannot long maintain standards in the face of fewer and fewer qualified people carrying more and more unqualified people.
We have traded our nationhood for an old German mirage, proposed two centuries ago by the poet Friedrich Schiller and confirmed by Karl Marx. It is called "One World," and is about as likely as the sun rising in the West, and as desirable as the United Nation's control of our armed forces.
But the worst comes from an invention of Josef Goebbels, introduced initially in Adolf Hitler's Third Reich. He called it "Gleichschaltung" (pronounce glike-shaltung), which means switching to parity.
The first American incarnation arrived as "multiculturalism." Disguised as an invitation for all "to be proud of their heritage," it elevates sets of habit and custom to the level of culture, and reduces true cultures to sets of habit and custom. It calls literary masterworks "texts," and the greatest music merely "sound in space." It deprives all who need to and desire to rise by eliminating heights to which to rise.
Gleichschaltung in America then proceeded to declare all beliefs and religions to be equivalent, and went on to propose that all forms of cohabitation were essentially the same. First came the elimination of illegitimate children as a category, then the "naturalization" of the one-parent family, finally the denunciation of mankind's entire past history during which marriage had required two adults of different sexes, so they might procreate.
After its success in changing domestic designations, Gleichschaltung has also been applied to those coming from other parts. For the longest time, persons arriving without proper papers were called illegal aliens. Recently, they turned into "undocumented immigrants."
That is, until the Saturday before Easter.
Apparently, Elian Gonzales was found to be an illegal alien.