Despite the doom surrounding the American empire, the people of this country are nothing if they aren’t boastfully optimistic. Such exaggerated self-worth appears throughout U.S. history.

The classic example is Custer’s Last Stand. It’s romanticized and glamorized so that we know all about George Custer, the loser. He was an Army colonel who elevated his own rank to general, and who died in the encounter the Lakota, Cheyenne and Arapaho Plains Indians called the Battle of the Greasy Grass.

We know a lot about the braggadocious loser who died with all his men — even his horse was slaughtered — but we hardly know anything about the victors led by Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull, who was the greatest of Native warriors.

Another example is what was referred to as “The Lost Cause,” the antebellum campaign to maintain chattel slavery in this country which led to the miserable defeat of the Confederacy in the bloodiest of all of this country’s wars — the Civil War. There’s hardly a cowboy movie from the period which doesn’t depict the lonely former Rebel soldier, wandering through the West, seeking a new life.

And today, the alt-right QAnon has made the slimy, low-life, whore-mongering, twice-impeached former President Donald J. Trump the leader of the Republican Party — or this country’s avowed White Tribe. They have morphed from being the Tea Party Caucus, to the Freedom Caucus, to the Proud Boys, to the Three Percenters, to violent insurrectionists who tried to overthrow the government of the United States on Jan. 6 in order to “stop the steal” — the legitimate certification of the election of Joe Biden.

In fact, a majority of the Repugnikkkans in Congress voted in favor of what Democrats call “The Big Lie.” Indeed, a majority of GOP voters (white folks) believe that the grifter who was turned out of office really won the 2020 election. They are so loony that every one of those 100-some-odd Congress members who voted to overturn the election, despite no evidence of election irregularities, were themselves elected on those same ballots.

To call those jokers “delusional” is a kind description of them.

They are once again wagering everything on the myth of whiteness. In every sphere, they are digging in deeper and deeper. They’re trying to banish the truth. They ban books and lessons which teach that The White Man enslaved millions of souls stolen from the African continent to build this nation on land stolen from the indigenous people, and then committed genocide against them.

They have the nerve of then boasting of their “American exceptionalism” as though a righteous and just Supreme Being has ordained their wicked conquest, and promised them rulership in the land in perpetuity.

They flaunt the words of the Declaration of Independence, and will (if they can get away with it) trash their Constitution in order to hold on to their power, never dreaming they will be held to account for their wicked behavior.

What’s so frightening about all of this is that so many political observers are reckoning that these disagreeable politicians may just very well win back control of the Senate and take control of the House of Representatives in the 2022 elections. This after cannibalizing their own members like hawkish conservative Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).

They believe that circumstances will continue to favor their wrongdoing and permit them to rule forever. Like Custer, and the leaders of The Lost Cause, they are, however, sadly mistaken.

The worst thing that is likely to grow out of this scenario is fascism, sooner or later.

“Well perversely, ironically, and paradoxically, and unfortunately, one of the things in our favor is that the white tribe, as you put it, routinely overestimates their strength,” said Dr. Gerald Horne, professor of history and Africana studies at the University of Houston.

“I think that lesson needs to be repeated because [antebellum] history could repeat itself, they could lose everything,” he said. “And sadly, and unfortunately, their loss, considering that they’re at the helm of this ship, USA, this ship of fools, also could mean that [Black people], the low-paying passengers aboard the ship of fools, could also lose everything as well.”

This white supremacist “emperor” literally has no clothes today, but few are prepared to acknowledge that these are the end times.

Askia Muhammad

WPFW News Director Askia Muhammad is also a poet, and a photojournalist. He is Senior Editor for The Final Call newspaper and he writes a weekly column in The Washington Informer.

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