Robert Jordan, wiping out the stew bowl with bread, explained how the income tax and inheritance tax worked. “But the big estates remain. Also there are taxes on the land,” he said.
“But surely the big proprietors and the rich will make a revolution against such taxes. Such taxes appear to me to be revolutionary. They will revolt against the government when they see that they are threatened, exactly as the fascists have done here,” Primitivo said.
“It is possible.”
“Then you will have to fight in your country as we fight here.”
“Yes, we will have to fight.”
“But are there not many fascists in your country?”
“There are many who do not know they are fascists but will find it out when the time comes.”
“But you cannot destroy them until they rebel?”
“No,” Robert Jordan said. “We cannot destroy them. But we can educate the people so that they will fear fascism and recognize it as it appears and combat it.” (Hemingway 207-208)
Ernest Hemingway wrote this passage from For Whom the Bell Tolls in 1939-1940 and yet it could have been written yesterday. The revolution has come and the coup d’état from the top has already taken place here in America. And how correct he was in his assessment that “…they do not know they are fascists but will find it out when the time comes…”. Nazis march in American cities, militia groups are creating home grown terrorists and just this past year an American citizen died, in America, standing up to a Nazi. Despite all this, people who support Trump and his regime’s agenda still fail to realize that they too are undermining everything that this country is about. I could get very broad and hyperbolic by talking about freedom and justice but it is easier to point to the specifics. Trump calls the media the “enemy of the people”. That’s a Stalin phrase right there. He is doing absolutely nothing to combat the rise in white supremacy and home grown hate groups that has taken place since he stepped into the White House, knowing that they support him.
Primitivo said that the rich would rise up against the taxes and they did, content to suck in every penny they can get for their own bank accounts while leaving the majority of the country high and dry to hang, grasping for a scrap of whatever is left behind. Trump and his cronies will line their pockets until he resigns, gets impeached or is finally elected out of office in 2020. Either way they have won. The fascists and the greed of the super wealthy has already done irreparable damage to this country. Our only hope is resisting in every way we can to an agenda that is the antithesis to America’s true values of freedom, democracy, diversity and equality.
Hemingway, Ernest. For Whom the Bell Tolls. New York: Scribner, (2003): 207-208. Print.