I believe that being cognitively rigid and isolated play the largest role in the radicalization of an individual. It is extremely difficult to change the mind of someone who is either set in their extreme beliefs and/or is ignorant to outside facts/statistics or the diverse and nuanced outlooks that other individuals possess. That rigidity combined with isolation with other like-minded people creates a blissful enclave, void of any other ideas that could disrupt or conflict with their ideologies and “rightful” view of the world. With that in mind, I strongly believe that members of the right are far more likely to be radicalized than the left. Through our textbooks and assigned videos, I have learned a lot about key characteristics that are significant in the Republican and Democratic parties. One of those characteristics being that liberals are more open-minded than conservatives. I believe that conservatives’ close-mindedness and traditional perspective make individuals less likely to accept or acknowledge other outlooks as correct. This makes a more slippery slope for individuals who may start isolating themselves from other ideas and are heavily influenced by false ideas over long periods of time.
In my opinion, the January 6th insurrection directly reflects the potent racism that thrives in our country. I believe that the terrorist event that transpired is the direct result of the blatant, off-kilter behavior of former president Trump and the encouragement and replication of his actions by our country’s most influential Republican leaders/figures. Domestic terrorists have fervently defended Trump because of what he represents: the prevalence of racism. Through his prejudiced travel restrictions against Muslim and Latin American countries; his inappropriate social media posts that uplift organizations like the KKK while bashing and slandering groups like BLM; and his cancellation of DACA and caging/separation of undocumented families, Trump has clearly and brazenly distinguished himself and his racist beliefs. For many Americans, Trump is a racist emblem that prevails despite the world’s admonishment; for this reason, it is only natural that many Americans would readily jump to the defense of Trump, a man who emboldens racists who are otherwise suppressed by progressive members of society. However, I would like to elucidate that racists have always been alive and well, Trump simply inspired them over the course of his presidency. I would sometimes wonder how our country could transition from such a progressive man like Barack Obama to a man like Donald Trump, but, through my recent understanding of US history, I see that progressives and racists are at a constant battle, neither progressing then backtracking, nor prevailing entirely, but always clashing and evolving with time–even in 2021. As Video 3 presumes, white supremacism and domestic terrorism can be attributed to the statistic that the white race will be the minority by 2040. I think that this behavior will only get worse as the years progress. I believe that white supremacy is a way to keep the institution of racism and white power alive, even as our nation’s demographic reflects the opposite.
Post #2 (5 points): Find a group member’s post where you have some disagreement with their perspective (either on the root causes of radicalization and domestic terror or the specific example).
MAKING SURE TO BE RESPECTFUL OF THEIR VIEW, discuss the following in 150 words or more:
a) First, tell them what you respect most about their view on the issue? If you struggle to find something, tell them why you can see how a person could come to their conclusion.
b) IF YOU ARE THE FIRST TO RESPOND: Identify the part of their post with which you find disagreement. Tell them why you disagree AND present them with another way of looking at the issue, using examples to be helpful. Don’t forget: be humble & respectful.
c) IF YOU ARE NOT FIRST: Other group members have already started a good discussion. Your job can be to find a source/statistic that adds to the discussion. Post the source and explain how it helps to resolve the issue (NOTE: you still must do Part A above!).