From the Wilderness


By James Strauss


They’re not afraid of his bluster, they know he’s not real or tough.  They’re not afraid of his looks as he’s built like a pillow made of fluff.  His hair’s as fake as his story and his business is anything but.  So, what drives a good portion of a normally rational population to be so afraid of this man who’s risen above any and every scandal that would have taken almost anyone through all of history and plunged him down and out of any leadership role that could ever exist?  The man doesn’t care about his friends or those who do him favors or well, but he hates with a passion for violence any who go against him in any way.  His history is littered with the tattered, broken, and dead bodies of those who opposed him, interspersed with those of his retinue whom he simply didn’t notice he was ruining or killing.

Hitler succeeded so dramatically in Germany, not because of his platforms, planks, or expressed beliefs. He succeeded because all of Germany rapidly came to fear him.  Saddam did the same thing, quickly executing his friends and supporters as soon as he took over the country of Iraq. He went on to succeed mightily for many years because he was that feared.  The Sunni, the Shiite, the Sufie, and even the Christians got along simply out of fear.  The United States has fallen into a dark well of never-to-be-discussed terror.  Death threats are now portrayed about the same as if they were deaths themselves instead of threats.  The man of fear, instilling it all around him, can go on national television and say that he will execute his old enemies if elected.  He openly says he will kill immigrants of one type or another.

The people are listening and watching.  The people are afraid for themselves not all those who that man openly threatens.  The cops at Uvalde were afraid for their safety not that of the children at the school or anyone else.  Human beings, at their cores, know that they cannot do anything for anyone, including themselves if they are dead.  So, they seek, at all costs, while denying they are doing that seeking, to stay alive.  The denial of fear can’t be exposed by any of those experiencing it, instead the fearful turn to bluster and threats as well as following those who do the same.  This man who so many are following does not kill people physically, he leaves that to others.  This man kills people’s spirits while threatening to reveal that they are the same fearful child that lives at the very core of his being.  He attracts those who are exactly like him, regardless of upbringing, sex, or any other features.  Frightened people, especially in groups, know at their cores that normal, not frightened people, will quickly become afraid of those who are driven only by fear.  They know that the frightened will do anything, say anything, and believe anything that hides their own fears…and they will follow the big, clumsy, billowing windbag of irrational expression to the grave, thinking the hole up ahead in the ground is a hole that’s been dug for others yet somehow created in just the perfect dimensions to fit them.