Donald Trump—Not a Fascist Dictator

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Commentary

by Daniel Nardini

I have been hearing it since he was elected president. I hear it from the political left and from the extreme political left that U.S. President Donald Trump is a dictator and that we are now in a “fascist era.” I have seen huge demonstrations from all stripes of people on the political left, and especially those parties, groups and associations that are part of what has become known as the Antifa (short for “anti-fascist) coalition, who are marching and demonstrating in all of our major cities against what they see as the new fascist era. What disturbs me is that Antifa has employed violence, intimidation and destruction of property as well as vicious attacks on individuals and their homes and families for the express purpose of “fighting fascist oppression.” But it seems, in Antifa’s view, that this fascist oppression is not just limited to neo-nazis and Ku Klux Klan groups or white supremacists, but also encompasses conservatives and anyone who simply disagrees with Antifa.

Let us be clear that I am not a member of the Republican Party. I do not support the Republican Party, nor do I support the more extreme right wing sector of the Republican Party or any extreme right wing parties or groups out there. I did not, nor do I support current U.S. President Donald Trump or many of his policies. This all said, I do NOT see him as a fascist dictator, or a dictator at all. Yes, he is a very personable man who rewards loyalty to those who have stuck with him (even if they may not be qualified for the positions in government they are placed in), he suspicious of, and does not like much of the U.S. news media (this is nothing new among presidents. This was also true of Richard Nixon and George W. Bush), and he can be arrogant and likes to run the U.S. federal government as if it is a corporation. But, this does not a dictator make. He is definitely right of center in politics, but he does not have from what I can tell a desire to have unlimited power nor does he wish to trash the U.S. Constitution.

We must remember that his presidency, like all presidents before him, has legitimacy under the U.S. Constitution he has sworn to uphold, and from the voters who put him into office. And that same constitution limits what he can do as well as the other people in the government who have sworn their allegiance to the U.S. Constitution. For those who believe that we are in a fascist era………..they have no idea what they are talking about. I lived in a neo-fascist state, and I know only too well what that all entails. In such a state there is no free and independent press. The press might be “private,” but the ruling party had an important share in the private news media and it had established clear rules what the press can and especially cannot say. Demonstrations—what few there were—were heavily monitored and all those involved were arrested, threatened and jailed and tortured.The government made clear what subjects were completely taboo, that no one could criticize the current leadership or even past presidents and rulers, and that there were NO constitutional safeguards or protections. Innocent people could and were easily taken away in the dead of night and were never heard from again. The families of dissidents equally suffered, and in some cases were murdered as a deterrent from anyone speaking out. This was the reality I knew, and all I can say is that for all the problems the United States has we are simply not in a fascist era. If we are ever in such a period then I will tell you to panic.

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