12 Months That Shook A Nation

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Guest post by Ayad Rahim

America just went through a 12-month spell that will shake the country to its core and change it forever. The 12 months began with a spurious impeachment of the president, and ended with another. But these were practically trivial, compared with what happened in between.

An influenza-like contagion was concertedly manipulated and exploited by governments and media to systematically terrorize and traumatize the public. And joining in the fear-mongering and politicization were medical professionals, who practiced gross malfeasance, as they censored, twisted, abused, and lied about science, the contagion, its risks, and treatments — the truth and people’s health and lives be damned.

Then, politicians and bureaucrats, having scared the wits of people, preyed on the trust of a panic-stricken populace rendered helpless and paralyzed. Drunk on power and adulation, they let their inner-dictators out and ordered people this way and that, put them under house arrest, isolated them, criminalized social life, obliterated people’s most basic freedoms, dehumanized them, and ground them down — most egregiously, to society’s weakest and most vulnerable.

And the damage was not only to individuals’ lives. The country’s leaders shredded the social fabric and public trust, killed life, wiped out entire sectors and industries, crippled and impoverished the country, crushed its spirit, and brought it to its knees. And we, the free citizens of the country, meekly obeyed and abided these restrictions and the devastation they wrought, with nary a question or a squeak.

Then, for months, mobs torched and sacked hundreds of cities and towns across the country, killed scores of people, wounded thousands more, and destroyed and terrorized the lives of millions. In response, politicians ordered police to stand by and bow down, legitimized violence, and caused murders and violent crime to skyrocket — all, while celebrities, the media, and public figures celebrated and enabled the wanton destruction and killings.

And the end-goal of all of this intentional destruction was political gain and financial profit. (In a handful of states, governors condemned thousands of seniors to death, so they could rise politically and reap tens of billions of dollars.) In the meantime, the source of the virus, our country’s chief enemy, has suffered no consequences for the virus and its spread; for its lies, obstruction, and coverups; or for the devastation it wreaked on the rest of the world. Instead, it has been the chief beneficiary of its crimes and of our self-immolation.

Then, to complete the mission, the nation watched, as a presidential election was blatantly stolen, and then brazenly boasted about. This resulted in the head of a thoroughly corrupted crime family, on the take from Communist China, being installed as president — and no ordinary president, but a figurehead. And now, the regime he “heads,” which nearly half of the country sees as fraudulent, is radically transforming the country.

Meanwhile, half the country further demonized and delegitimized the other half, capping off its campaign by designating the other half as “domestic terrorists” and targeting political opponents without due process. All the while, both sides see each other as irredeemable and intolerable — a clear enemy, willfully killing people and destroying the country.

And how did all of this happen, in a free and democratic republic? With a single-minded, carpet-bombing campaign of malicious lies, censorship, and suppression, orchestrated by the country’s most powerful players — in government, business, and media — quite likely, cooperating with Communist China. To all of which, we, the people, kowtowed and capitulated.

* * *

That’s a lot of earthquakes for any society to handle. After one such foundation-shattering blow, a country would need quite a bit of time to catch its breath, absorb the blow, evaluate the damage, and recover. But what, in the case of so many devastating blows, and in such a short period of time, and, then, to a country with almost no experience with such society-wracking events?

The effects of these shock waves are only just beginning to be felt. In the months and years to come, more and more information will emerge, and a fuller picture of what happened will come into focus — about the real causes of death, about how the numbers were manipulated, about the risks to different groups, about the validity and relevance of tests and results, about the costs and effectiveness of different treatments and preventives, about money-trails, profits, and vested interests, about how different states and countries responded and fared, and about the short- and long-term consequences on children, on our attitudes towards work, freedom, and human interaction, on our psyches, on our very humanity

As the cloud of war lifts and as people come out of the daze and haze, it will become easier to see things more clearly and soberly. At first, people will be horrified by the extent of the damage done to human, social, and political life around the world (death and destruction exponentially greater than from the Wuhan virus). They will also be shocked by the deception and manipulation that caused them, the obscenity and absurdity of it all, and the cynicism and callous cruelty behind them — how governments and media manipulated data and exploited people’s vulnerability and trust, to incite fear and panic, and impose panic-driven measures that strangled life and held the world hostage — all, for the sake of a naked power-grab and loads of lucre. The personal and social effects will be profound and widespread.

Ayad Rahim is a writer, teacher, and bookseller in Cleveland.

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