March 3, 2021
Democrats’ control in Va. produces sweeping changes
Photo/Ned Oliver, Virginia Mercury
Gov. Ralph Northam, flanked by incoming Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw and House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn, outlines Democrats’ priorities for the 2020 legislative session.
By Ned Oliver,
Fauquier’s State Legislators
and Kate Masters
In 2019, voters handed Democrats unified control of Virginia government for the first time in 21 years, guaranteeing the party at least two years of unfettered lawmaking before the next election.
This year’s House of Delegates elections and race for governor will be a debate largely over whether Democrats delivered what most Virginia voters wanted or changed too much too fast.
Fauquier remains a GOP stronghold. Republicans hold three of the four Virginia General Assembly positions that represent all or part of the county. For the most part, those Republican legislators have opposed the Democrats’ changes in state law.
Here’s a look at the consensus agenda that emerged as lawmakers worked to squeeze a generation’s worth of pent-up legislative desire into a few short legislative sessions.
Elections and voting
Making it easier to vote was a top priority when Democrats took control, and the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the pace of change to Virginia’s once-strict election laws.
Democrats passed bills to open absentee voting to anyone who wants to cast a ballot early or vote by mail, not just those who have an acceptable excuse. That change came just as the virus arrived, bringing with it a massive spike in absentee voting (almost 60 percent of voters cast absentee ballots last year) that have transformed how Virginia elections work. Legislators also approved ballot drop-off boxes, prepaid postage for ballot return envelopes, and a formalized process allowing voters to correct errors with absentee paperwork.
The new majorities have taken significant steps on voter access, repealing Virginia’s mandatory photo ID rule, making registration near-automatic through the DMV, and passing a state-level voting rights law that creates a stricter review process for any local election changes that might discriminate against racial or linguistic minorities. Legislators also teed up more sweeping reform in the future by giving initial approval to a constitutional amendment that, if passed again next year and approved by voters, would automatically restore felons’ voting rights upon release from prison.
More election reforms originally passed in 2020 will be coming online in the future. A bill allowing ranked-choice voting in local races takes effect this year, and legislation allowing same-day voter registration is scheduled to begin for the 2022 general election.
Republicans have repeatedly said the election-law overhaul has sown confusion and opportunities for fraud. Democrats have dismissed those claims, saying they perpetuate baseless theories that the voting system is susceptible to widespread manipulation.
Before Democrats regained power, the state had passed no significant laws aimed at addressing climate change. In short order, policies began bubbling up just as surely as tidal floods in a Hampton Roads storm sewer.
In 2020, they passed the landmark Virginia Clean Economy Act, which sketches out a roadmap for the state’s two largest electric utilities to go carbon-free by 2050 and sets binding annual targets for renewables adoption and energy efficiency. And in conjunction with the Clean Energy and Community Flood Preparedness Act, it commits Virginia to participation in a carbon market known as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.
In 2021, efforts shifted to transportation, which is responsible for roughly half of Virginia’s carbon emissions. Lawmakers committed to more stringent transportation emissions standards set by California and shared by 14 other states, as well as a requirement for a certain percentage of vehicles sold in Virginia to be electric. Other laws that have passed begin studying and building out electric vehicle infrastructure, although legislators failed to provide any funding for a rebate program. And a little-noticed bill will create a task force to examine the potential of carbon sequestration.
Some members of the more progressive wing of the Democratic caucus in the House unsuccessfully pushed their colleagues to go further, criticizing the Clean Economy Act for not moving fast enough and faulting the chamber’s leadership for blocking consideration of a Virginia version of the Green New Deal in favor of an approach they view as overly deferential to electric utilities.
When Democrats took control of the General Assembly, they pledged to increase funding for education — touting it as a priority for the 2020 session.
A year later, investments have increased while falling short of the nearly $1 billion that the state’s Board of Education says is necessary to fully fund public schools. This year’s compromise budget includes close to $50 million for school divisions to hire additional support staff such as counselors, nurses and social workers. It improves the ratio of support positions to students, but falls short of fully meeting the board’s recommended Standards of Quality — the minimum guidelines for staffing, instruction and other areas of accreditation.
After deferring teacher raises at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, legislators capped this year’s session with a 5-percent pay increase for educators. But analysts at The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis, a nonprofit Richmond think tank focused on how policy affects low- and moderate-income people, says the language gives local school divisions the flexibility to reduce their share down to 2 percent, which would then decrease the state’s match.
“In practice, it means that not every teacher is going to see a 5-percent raise next school year,” said Chad Stewart, TCI’s manager of education policy and development. Overall, per-pupil funding increased under the state’s Democratic majority — especially unusual given an anticipated budget shortfall, according to Mr. Stewart.
“But the issue at hand is the level of investment still doesn’t come close to the level of funding our state experts say is necessary,” he said.
In higher education, Democrats delivered on one of their biggest priorities — free community college for low- to middle-income students. This year, the General Assembly nearly unanimously backed a bill to fund tuition for students in high-demand fields. It was a campaign promise for Gov. Ralph Northam.
Virginia expanded Medicaid before Democrats took control of the General Assembly, allowing hundreds of thousands of previously ineligible Virginians to gain coverage. But in the two years since, they’ve made significant changes to the state health care exchange in an effort to stabilize enrollment and lower the prices on premiums.
Last year, lawmakers voted to establish a state-run marketplace that would reserve more funding for outreach and enrollment efforts. The goal of the exchange, scheduled to debut in 2023, is to bring on new consumers who would diffuse the cost of premiums.
This year, the General Assembly also approved a reinsurance program funded through federal waivers, state revenue and a small assessment on insurance companies. Recommended by the same workgroup that suggested a state-run exchange, the program aims to offset claims from high-risk patients, lowering the costs for other consumers.
“Reinsurance is really targeted at that demographic that’s struggling,” said Sara Cariano, a policy specialist for the Virginia Poverty Law Center, in an interview last month. “Right now, it’s really expensive to get insurance when you don’t get any help.”
Even as Democrats have bolstered the exchange, they’ve avoided more drastic changes to the state’s insurance landscape. A bill filed this year by Del. Ibraheem Samirah (D-Fairfax) directed the state’s Joint Commission on Health Care to contract a study on the cost of universal insurance. But the legislation died in a Senate committee with bipartisan opposition.
Abortion is one area where Democrats have made sweeping changes. In 2020, lawmakers repealed the state’s mandatory ultrasound and 24-hour waiting period. This year, they voted to repeal a ban on abortion coverage for plans offered through state exchange.
Democrats voted to raise the state’s minimum wage to $12 an hour over the next three years — the first increase the state has seen since 2009, when the federal minimum went up to $7.25 an hour.
The agreement represents a substantial increase — with the first bump to $9.50 an hour scheduled to go into effect in May — but it falls short of the $15-an-hour minimum many Democrats campaigned on.
Democrats in the House and Senate found themselves at odds over the proposal, with the House pushing for $15 and the Senate worrying the figure was too high for businesses, particularly in rural areas, to pay.
They’ve agreed to revisit the issue in 2024.
The two chambers have also disagreed over which categories of workers should be included, with the House pushing to include agricultural workers and the Senate twice refusing.
They were similarly divided over other labor issues, with the Senate scaling back a bill that will allow public sector unions for the first time, but only at the local level and only if approved by local elected officials.
One area where House and Senate lawmakers found agreement was an unwillingness to repeal the state’s right to work law, which bars compulsory payment of union dues as a condition of employment.
The impasse led to one of the more dramatic moments in the House of Delegates this year when Del. Lee Carter (D-Manassas) unsuccessfully attempted to use a procedural maneuver to force a vote on the House floor.
Before winning their majorities, Democrats made it clear they wanted to pass tighter laws to prevent potentially dangerous people from having access to guns and allow firearm bans in more public places. They mostly delivered on that front, but they’ve stopped short of outlawing specific types of weaponry.
They made background checks mandatory for all gun sales in 2020. Legislators built on that step this year by lengthening the amount of time the Virginia State Police can take to complete a background check from three business days to five business days, leaving more time for vetting without purchases going through by default due to paperwork delays. The legislature also sought to limit access to firearms by passing a red flag law, which allows authorities to temporarily seize guns from people deemed a threat, and reinstating the one-handgun-a-month rule.
Democrats have also pushed for gun bans at places like government buildings, parks and at events like political rallies and protests. A law passed last year gave local governments more leeway to ban guns at public events, and legislation approved this year codified gun bans for Capitol Square, state buildings and polling places.
A proposed ban on assault weapons, which drew an intense backlash from gun-rights supporters in late 2019 and early 2020, failed to win enough support to pass the more moderate Senate. A proposal to ban so-called ghost guns, untraceable firearms assembled at home from kits or 3D printers, met a similar fate in the Senate this year.
Del. Marcus Simon (D-Fairfax), the bill’s sponsor, said he got the impression some of his colleagues believed they had already done enough on gun policy.
“There was just a feeling that they didn’t want to have that fight again,” Del. Simon said.
From abolishing the death penalty to legalizing marijuana, Democrats enacted sweeping reforms touching all aspects of the state’s criminal justice system.
Many of the policies were the product of a special legislative session last year that followed nationwide protests against police brutality, including laws that went into effect this month banning no-knock police searches, limiting the use of chokeholds and authorizing the attorney general to investigate local police departments. They also passed an obscure-but-far-reaching bill that eliminates what defense attorneys have come to call the “jury penalty.”
This year, lawmakers agreed to more reforms, including legislation that will for the first time allow people to have some past convictions on their records sealed — a step Democrats hope will make it easier for them to rebuild their lives after prison.
But the reforms rarely went as far as advocates hoped and were often mired in bitter disputes between leaders in the House and Senate. Legislation to legalize marijuana nearly failed in the final hours of this year’s session and the compromise that ultimately passed won’t go into effect until 2024. A bill that originally intended to ban police departments from obtaining military weapons was rewritten to only apply to obscure equipment such as bayonets.
And many proposed reforms failed entirely, including legislation aimed at making it easier to sue police officers for misconduct and a bill that would have repealed most mandatory minimum sentences from state code — something leaders in both the House and Senate called a priority but were nonetheless unable to reach an agreement on.
Democrats have also demonstrated reluctance to use their majorities to address prison conditions, voting down bills that would have abolished private prisons and jails, reestablished independent oversight of the Department of Corrections and imposed strict limits on the use of solitary confinement.
The party has taken both concrete and symbolic steps on matters of freedom and equality. After his yearbook blackface scandal, Northam led an effort to repeal nearly 100 outdated, discriminatory laws still on the books. This year Democrats extended that symbolic step to LGBTQ rights, voting to repeal a ban on gay marriage still in the state Constitution, which was invalidated by a 2015 Supreme Court ruling.
Democrats also put in place a range of new civil rights protections, making it easier to raise discrimination claims of all types in state court with the Virginia and for the first time explicitly banned discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity in housing, employment and public accommodations.
On immigrants’ rights, lawmakers passed bills that extended driver privilege cards, in state tuition and financial assistance to undocumented immigrants living in Virginia.
And legislation that allowed local governments to take down Confederate statues preceded the removal of 71 monuments and memorials this year, according to statistics tracked by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
There have been moments of disharmony and unease with the pace of reform. Democrats in the Senate were unwilling to repeal language in the state code that explicitly authorizes faith-based adoption and foster care agencies to refuse to serve LGBTQ families and people of other religions — a policy the GOP put in place in 2012 over strenuous objections from Democrats. The measure passed the House but was withdrawn after lawmakers in the Senate amended it to cut state funding but allow the agencies to continue to operate, a compromise the House deemed unworkable.
“The whole idea of having this balkanized, state-sanctioned discrimination is something I couldn’t live with,” said the bill’s sponsor, Del. Mark Levine (D-Alexandria).
Democrats have remained deeply divided on electric utility reform over the past two years, with many House members joining with a cadre of Republicans in that chamber to push for a set of changes to state code that would restore much of the authority of Virginia’s public utility regulators, the State Corporation Commission, to regulate rates and earnings. Powerful members of the Senate however, with longstanding ties to the utilities, and particularly Dominion Energy, have been reluctant to relinquish legislative control, even amid regular reports of excessive profits by the monopolies.
One high-profile effort, the Fair Energy Bills Act of 2020, garnered solid bipartisan support in the House but was struck down in the Senate. This year, a slate of proposals that sought to correct what their sponsors described as an imbalance in regulatory power ahead of Dominion’s first earnings review in six years were also scrapped by the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee.
Still, the array of proposals put forward by House Democrats and a surprise success by reformers in 2020 on a bill that returned to the SCC its traditional power to set the period of time over which the costs of early power plant retirements can be recovered indicate ongoing shifts in how the legislature views its relationship with utilities. And although this year’s reform bills all failed, pressure in the Senate has led to a request for the reconvening of the dormant Commission on Electric Utility Regulation to take a more comprehensive look at the existing regulatory system.
In his 2007 autobiography, former Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a prolific Democratic fundraiser, said his father taught him “money in politics was neither evil nor good.”
“Money in politics was like gas in the tank, it was what you needed to get where you were going,” wrote Mr. McAuliffe, now seeking a second term as governor.
If the last two sessions are any indication, Democrats like their trajectory.
Several attempts to rein in Virginia’s wide-open campaign finance system by capping contribution amounts or limiting corporate donations have gone nowhere in the Democratic-led legislature, despite reform being a popular issue among progressives.
A less-sweeping proposal to ban politicians from converting campaign funds to their personal use, a rule that exists at the federal level and almost every other state, passed the House of Delegates this year but died in the state Senate. Gov. Ralph Northam called for campaign finance reform while running in a Democratic primary in 2017, though he hasn’t been able to convince fellow Democrats, who now wield legislative power and the fundraising advantages that come with it.
Campaign finance reformers argue it’s a good-government step to reduce the influence of wealthy donors over state affairs and boost confidence that policy is being written with the general public’s interests in mind. Skeptics in the legislature have warned a clampdown might have unintended consequences by encouraging the creation of dark-money groups operating outside existing transparency rules.
The General Assembly approved a resolution this year to study the prospects for comprehensive campaign finance reform in the future.
The report isn’t due until Nov. 1, meaning candidates running in this year’s statewide elections and House of Delegates contests, which will determine whether Democrats keep power, will have few legal limitations on the amounts they raise and spend on their campaigns.
Though the Democratic majorities have rewritten swathes of state policy to make Virginia more culturally progressive, they’ve shown less appetite for addressing economic disparities by changing the tax code.
Del. Vivian Watts (D-Fairfax), the chairwoman of the House Finance Committee, is hoping to get that conversation started through a comprehensive study on how the state can boost the “progressivity” of the individual income taxes, which make up almost 70 percent of the state’s general fund revenues.
“And yet every year, insidiously, the burden of the individual income tax falls harder and harder on those having the least ability to pay,” Del. Watts said as she presented her proposal to the House.
Under the existing system, the top bracket starts at $17,000 in taxable income, a number that hasn’t changed since 1990.
The legislature approved Watts’ resolution calling for the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission to study the issue and make recommendations in time for the 2023 session.
Please, be polite. Avoid name-calling and profanity.
For credibility, sign your real name; stand behind your comments. Readers will give less credence to anonymous posts.
Jeffersonian American · March 14, 2021 at 2:01 pm
Writing at AMERICAN THINKER, author Chuck Mawhinney astutely notes our founding fathers understood the reality and the need for boundaries. They were tasked to create political limits among the branches of government and also to define the boundary between government and society. They could not make their population moral. But they could and did apply a moral code to their definitions. Those things that protect the individual from the State were called "The Bill of Rights." These rights derive from a commonsense notion that man is not the creator, but the created. Whether you believe solely in evolution or solely in creation or something between the two, humankind did not create humankind. That's common sense. There is a boundary between us and the nature of our creation. We did not create ourselves.
Author Mawhinney continues, therefore, the logic goes, there are certain things within the human being that make him sovereign, and those elements are endowed through creation in us. They are not subject to state authority. They "belong" to the individual.
Most notably, the human mind is the sole property of the individual, given him by creation. We did not create our minds or our bodies. Neither did the government. This fact should be part of "gender studies" as well as "race relations." Dialectic reason says that what comes from an individual's mind — i.e., what he thinks — is therefore also a gift of creation. It cannot be taken or abused or stifled by the government. We call this "freedom of speech" because what we say reflects what we think.
Author Mawhinney notes freedom of speech becomes freedom of the press. When we shout down or cancel someone's speech, we are seriously crossing a boundary. In the old days — say, two years ago — there was always someone to stand up for this right. "Let him say his piece," we might say to a dissenter. "Then you can have yours." Sadly, that is not the case today. Mob mentality is taking over.
Author Mawhinney observes, why do the feds usurp authority from the states, and why do the states demand of the feds, and why do people trespass on someone's right to speak? Why does the current Democrat Executive Branch make law when the Congress is constitutionally assigned that responsibility? Why are so many boundaries being invaded, and why is trespassing no longer a crime?
The answer is obvious. We no longer respect boundaries. We have become that tribal human animal before religion awoke us to the necessity of morality. The whole concept of existentialism rides on the concept of organized and lawful conduct. Some say "social contract." Pick your terminology; say it how you like. The ends are the same. This society is fracturing at an alarming rate. Nothing can turn the tide until boundaries are once again recognized and respected. There is no moral code without them.
There are other more powerful forces at work also. We call them Google and Facebook and Amazon, a dozen companies seeking to strike down freedom of speech on the altar of their self-righteous narcissism. They are zealots, worshiping the ideological god of Critical Theory and insisting you repeat their rhetoric lest you, the infidel, be canceled. They wish to control your thoughts.
This radical religion is devoid of wisdom from its founding presupposition. Critical Theory should deconstruct (their favorite word) its own thinking! Just as the ego of a narcissist knows no bounds (by definition), Critical Theory does not acknowledge the universal fact that boundaries exist. Move over, Google — you're crowding me! Why they wish to control your thoughts and opinions is anyone's guess. (Power, maybe?) How they are doing it is by algorithms, keywords, and the beginnings of artificial intelligence. What they are doing is crushing our right to hold thoughts that do not confirm to their dogma.
Anti-trust laws were put in place for this reason. Monopolies by their nature invade the boundaries of other businesses trying to survive. They can manipulate markets and apply irresistible pressure on groups and individuals. It's always the zealots who will not permit debate or dissension.
Author Mawhinney correctly observes, as Democrats are now opening our national borders and forgoing current immigration laws, we are in fact, no longer a country. If we no longer protect the citizenry from criminals by arresting them and prosecuting them, there will be no justice, no peace whatsoever. If we allow Big Tech to censor the digital world, there will be no intelligent debate or truth-seeking. Without truth-seeking, we have no education, no possible way forward. At that point, can we really call ourselves "civilized human beings"?
Gonearethedays · March 12, 2021 at 5:06 pm
Why are the Democrats so scared of America? Is it because they are destroying our freedom and future every day in every way?
Jeffersonian American · March 11, 2021 at 7:17 am
Democrat Posters below ignore the massive 2020 Election Fraud evidence; and the failure of the U.S. Electoral Commission, the U.S. Supreme Court and state courts to uphold the U.S. Constitution and state constitutions, respectively- all now an exposed part of The Deep State pushing for destruction of any remaining constitutional law that has now been run through the paper shredder. Our U.S. Constitution is officially a Dead Letter after the 2020 National Election Fraud was allowed to stand against law-abiding American voting citizens.
As Real Journalist Joe Hoft aptly notes, the problem for Democrats is when you blatantly flaunt election law and then institute policies that no one wants (e.g. money to Iran, bombing Syria, opening the southern border, putting children in cages, passing a massive spending bill that provides handouts to your friends and pays off your debts, etc., not to even mention what Democrats are doing to destroy everything good and noble here in Virginia- The Mother of All States), and then install a man as U.S. President who doesn’t know where he is and is led around like a geriatric patient, you get scared Americans- and Virginians- will see through your massive corruption. And they have.
Democrats are still frightened of the American people. Per their request, the U.S. military will keep thousands of National Guard troops at the U.S. Capital for another ten weeks- at least. We are now the World's Largest Banana Republic.
Democrats complained about a southern border wall but created a wall for themselves. They then demanded the military guard it. But they won’t send the same troops to protect our country’s border under Illegal Alien Invasion; and our Wholly Illegitimate Biden/Harris Regime funds the Marxist redistribution of trillions of dollars and Illegal Alien Invaders throughout the former United States of America.
Thomas Lifson correctly writes at AMERICAN THINKER, Americans are at a make-or-break moment, with Democrats attempting to push through HR 1, an unconstitutional federal takeover of election regulations, institutionalizing measures like mass mail-in ballot distribution with no verification that would empower cheating forever, in effect creating a one-party state. They do this as many of the gains of the Trump years are being erased, with hugely unpleasant consequences for ordinary Americans: open borders, soaring gasoline prices, dependence on foreign supplies of oil, and rising crime. Dems are trying to bypass the filibuster on HR 1. If they succeed and the SCOTUS declines to throw it out, despite the Constitution clearly giving power to state legislatures to regulate elections, then the coup will be complete. But that is far from inevitable, especially if Republicans go full throttle in pointing out the grave threat to legitimate elections that it creates. Biden's plummeting approval ratings and the specter of a normal midterm shift of power away from the new president's party threaten the Democrats' hold on power unless they change the rules in their favor. Democrats and the oligarchs they serve fear the ordinary Americans, the deplorables, grabbing back political power and electing officials who will implement the policies that benefit them. The problem is that too many of the deplorable get it and are willing to open their wallets as never before.
Lifson observes there is a lot of history yet to be written before Americans return to the polls in 2022 and 2024. Despair seems to be the default emotion for conservatives right now. Lifson dissents, for he believes that the current Democrat Marxist institutional and media dominance has blinded progressives to the extent of their own unpopularity.
Lest We Ever Forget What We All Witnessed in the 2020 National Election stolen from us in broad daylight and in the middle of the night:
Sammy · March 5, 2021 at 9:00 am
agreed on that, RGLJA
more than 60 court cases and 90 judges -- not a single one sees this your way and yet you cling to slinging falsehoods, including now that those who don't see it your way are blind because *they* will not see
RGLJA · March 4, 2021 at 4:51 pm
Sure Sammy... There are none so blind as those that will not see.
Sammy · March 4, 2021 at 11:03 am
public services should be easier, faster, simpler .. especially true for voting, the most fundamental of rights
minority has two paths to victory: suppress majority vote and/or change policies to attract the majority
that's how democracy works
no evidence of cheating that affects election outcomes but republicans tried to get away with suppressing legal votes *after* they were cast .. more than 60 cases before more than 90 judges were rejected
RGLJA: no evidence supports your POV .. none .. not a single judge out of more than 90 saw it your way .. not one .. courts and judges are the constitution's way of pursuing the truth and neither saw it your way; not even the judges appointed by Republicans
it's primarily Republicans trying to change voting laws -- most of which they passed in the first place -- which makes them sore losers tossing sour grapes .. and it makes you wonder why they don't want to overturn the elections they won, many in the same states they falsely claim were stolen .. oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive ..
Silii · March 4, 2021 at 10:10 am
Many states have had automatice voter registration via their DMVs for years. There are no problems. You can opt out of being a registered voter. Some states have used mail only ballots for years, for all elections - local, state, national. No problems. Many states have had drop boxes for ballots. No problem. May I reminde RGLJA that these laws apply to ALL eligible voters, not just those from a particular party. Voter suppression has no room in the United States. If you want your candidate to win then get your voters out. That's what 2020 proved.
RGLJA · March 4, 2021 at 7:59 am
The so-called "Easier to Vote" changes are nothing but "Easier to Cheat" provisions that legalize all the abuses we have seen in the last two elections. There is a reason that Democrats find it beneficial to make changes which compromise election integrity, while Republicans oppose such changes.
Truepat · March 4, 2021 at 6:19 am
Guess who will pay for all these changes, not the wealthy. None of these issues affect the lives or neighborhoods of those who wrote and voted on these issues. As McDonalds, WAWA and Sheetz have already proven, the self order computers are cheaper than paying a worker a higher wage. Sad but true......
Jeffersonian American · March 4, 2021 at 6:00 am
STAND AGAINST EVIL IN OUR TIME ACROSS VIRGINIA AND OUR NATION:
Virginia Democrats are pushing a Marxist-Communist agenda that has failed every single time it has been tried around the world- and it will fail miserably here as well in our formerly great Mother of All American States. Democrats will never rest until they FUNDAMENTALLY TRANSFORM the Commonwealth of Virginia into Modern-Day Hellhole California.
Even worse than the broad Democrat Attacks on our Bill of Rights, devastating economic and social engineering policies, is their continued evildoing to erase our proud and distinguished Virginia and American heritage to be replaced with Spectacular Lies in the public school classrooms and racist lectures and ugly, racist demonstrations in our public squares.
Patrice Lewis, writing at WorldNetDaily, astutely observes America, too, has experienced a régime change in which the Five Evils (Big Tech, Hollywood, public education, mainstream media, politicians) are engaging in a long-term scrubbing of history, both past and modern. In a remarkably short period of time, our history – the good and the bad – is being expunged from the records, leaving behind a sterilized and factually false account. Our founding documents are being dismissed as racist, and the intellectual giants who shaped the groundwork for a nation of freedom are being rebranded as white supremacists whose legacy is not just unimportant, but downright dangerous to acknowledge. America's origins are being rewritten to fit the narrative of the extreme left agenda. Among the very worst offenders of this can be found in Virginia's Democrat politicians- from the Governor on down throughout the state.
Lewis observes, how long before the logs and records of our history are destroyed, and the memory of them expunged so completely over the succeeding decades that they might never have existed? Even now there are whole generations of children who have grown up completely ignorant of major world events, everything from the Holocaust to the democide (death by government) of hundreds of millions of people over the last 120 years due to socialism and communism. They are equally ignorant of American history except what reflects the extreme leftist narrative.
"As with most cultural revolutions that wish to start things over at 'Year Zero,'" wrote historian and columnist Victor Davis Hanson last August, "the violence is aimed at America's past in order to change its present and future. The targets are not just the old majority culture but also classical statues and buildings, hallowed institutions, religious icons, the renowned names of streets and plazas, and almost every representation of tradition and authority. … The point of the mob is to wipe out what it cannot create. It topples what it can neither match nor even comprehend. It would erode the very system that ensures it singular freedom, leisure, and historic affluence. The brand of the anarchist is not logic but envy-driven power: to take it, to keep it, and to use it against purported enemies – which would otherwise be impossible in times of calm or through the ballot box." [Emphasis added.]
Even now, the left is trying to scrub President Trump from history. We're watching it happen in real time.
Lewis closes with this thought: We are witnessing a purge unprecedented in America, but widely repeated through world history during tyrannical régimes. Dissenting voices are silenced, religious expression is suppressed, statues are toppled, history is rewritten, and – most importantly – the education of children is strictly regulated. As Hitler so accurately observed, "When an opponent declares, 'I will not come over to your side,' I calmly say, 'Your child belongs to us already. … What are you? You will pass on. Your descendants, however, now stand in the new camp. In a short time they will know nothing else but this new community."
And it's all happening in less time than you think.
DontTread · March 3, 2021 at 2:19 pm
Tearing our state apart piece by piece. Sad. Praying for a big change in upcoming election year.
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