Donald Trump’s finally gone, but if Joe Biden wants his return to normalcy to be any more successful than his predecessor’s appeal to greatness, he’ll need to take on the real issues dragging red and blue America down: economic torpor, ever increasing inequality, and policies that diminish people’s prospects of making it into or maintaining their positions in the middle class.
These pressures are felt most among the young, a third of whom suffer from anxiety disorders and who collectively have very low levels of optimism about the future—with good reason. Many express their frustration in shockingly violent ways, sometimes by dressing up as “riot ninjas.”
What we have been witnessing—during the protests this summer and after the canard of a “stolen” election—reprises the often inchoate peasant rebellions that happened periodically in Medieval Europe. More troubling still are similarities with the German Weimar Republic, evidenced by the mass support of a would-be despot in the White House, rising anti-Semitism, an out-of-control upper bureaucracy, a politicized media, and the rise of armed militant groups at both extremes of the spectrum in a modern version of the street fights between Communist and Nazi street gangs, committed to bashing each other and undermining basic civil order. Acquiescence and outright approval for looting, burning and even takeovers of urban neighborhoods were widespread among progressives this summer. The people who stormed the capital on Jan. 6 may see themselves as “patriots,” but they acted more like Nazis.