Hiding from the truth
A gallery owner in San Francisco is getting harassed because she dared to show artwork that depicted the truth, that American soliders have been torturing Iraqis. Alas, a Blog has the story. Her property is not only under assault, but she has also been physically attacked for not respecting people's desire to hide the truth about torture from themselves:
After displaying a painting of U.S. soldiers torturing Iraqi prisoners, a San Francisco gallery owner bears a painful reminder of the nation's unresolved anguish over the incidents at Abu Ghraib -- a black eye and bloodied brow delivered by an unknown assailant who apparently objected to the art work.
The assault outside the Capobianco gallery in the city's North Beach district Thursday night was the worst, but only the latest in a string of verbal and physical attacks that have been directed at owner Lori Haigh since the painting, titled "Abuse," was installed there on May 16.
Last Wednesday, concerned for the safety of her two children, ages 14 and 4, who often accompanied her to work, Haigh decided to close the gallery indefinitely.
I try not to be one of those leftists who cries fascism at the slightest injury. But this is incredibly worrisome. That people feel justified in lying to themselves about the Iraqi war and justified in assaulting people who simply tell the truth is a big fat goosestep in fascism's direction. I mean, how else are we to describe hoardes of people motivated by extreme right-wing beliefs to squash even the hint of dissent with violence? If that doesn't convince you, let me remind you that the right wing message being broadcast across our country regarding this torture--that it's fine, necessary and even fun to torture Muslims (Limbaugh, etc.) and that since Muslims are sub-human animals, then torture is the only way to get through to them (San Francisco's own Michael Savage).
One of the reasons that fascism took hold in Germany is quite simple. The Nazis took a bunch of complex political issues, folded them up and buried them under a simple solution. The problem was not X and X and Y and Y and difficult and complex. No, the country of Germany was in trouble because the Jews were plotting against the superior Aryan Germans. Period. Simple! And if anyone has a problem with it, they can go to the chambers with the Jews.
I am really, really, really afraid that's where we're heading.
Anyway, like it or not, those of us who are resisting the direction this country's taking are going to have to educate ourselves on fascism, because it is a growing political attitude nowadays. While I find it rather inconcievable that fascism might overtake this country, there are many months until the election and many more vile things about this war that are going to come out and polarize people. In the meantime, Karl Rove is going to be upping the "hate" factor in the Bush campaign. Fish gotta swim, birds gotta fly and Rove & Bush gotta fan the flames of hate in order to scare people into voting for them. The realm of possibilities is open at this point.
David Neiwert is a good place to start getting educated and fast on American fascism.