TRUMP: “Twitter is a disgrace to democracy. They shouldn’t be allowed to do business in this Country.”
— Newsmax (@newsmax) January 4, 2022
Marjorie Taylor Greene got suspended on Twitter, and I am asking, “Why did that take so long?”
In case you clicked on this article hoping to read a rant on how big-tech is censoring Republicans, I am sorry to disappoint you.
If you think that suspending the private Twitter account of a politician, who repeatedly violated the rules of that platform, is a threat to democracy, then think again.
Let’s take a deep breath and ask ourselves, “What’s the difference between a dictatorship and democracy? What’s the difference between science and opinions?”
Or is it all the same? I don’t think so. Let me explain why.
What does a country look like that is run by a dictator who doesn’t believe in science, and what would the same country look like if it was run by a person who believes in democracy and science?
Let’s take a little excursion into history. As some of you might know, I am German. Let me tell you what happened 100 years ago in Germany.
After the first World War, Germany tried to establish a democracy. Germans voted, there was a parliament, and politicians tried to deal with the mess caused by the war. But then, some idiot entered the stage that started blaming minorities, intellectuals, and politicians for every existing problem. He tried to overthrow the government in 1923 and failed. He went to jail and wrote a book—10 years later, he won the election and established a dictatorship that killed millions of innocent people.
As mentioned many times before, I don’t like nazi comparisons, but in this case, there is just no other way to describe what is happening right now.
After the insurrection on January 6th, I was sure that Trump and other Republican leaders would not get away with this. But, as of now, it looks as if they did.
And just a few weeks before the launch of the platform, Marjorie Taylor Greene finally got suspended on Twitter. To be honest, this looks like a marketing stunt to me.
I am sure we will see more MAGA-supporting politicians getting banned in the near future. Every time one of these folks gets banned, they will promote Trump’s new platform. Trump has already asked his supporters to delete Twitter and Facebook and join his platform instead.
#BREAKING: Donald Trump is calling on his supporters to leave Twitter and Facebook immediately.
— Republicans against Trumpism (@RpsAgainstTrump) January 4, 2022
Joe Rogan got himself a Twitter-ban insurance policy and already set up an account on one of the platforms connected to the MAGA movement (I am not adding a link or name here because I don’t want to support these platforms). Rogan knows what’s up. He just invited Robert Malone to his show and is working hard on getting suspended soon.
During that interview, Rogan and Malone talk about what they call a mass psychosis. These two men literally believe that the pandemic caused a mass psychosis that can only be stopped by rejecting vaccines and facemasks.
I actually don’t disagree that we are seeing a mass psychosis happening in society, but it’s different than folks like Rogan, Trump, or Greene would like to admit.
The insurrection was a mass psychosis event. The Big Lie was a mass psychosis event. And Trump’s new social media platform might become the biggest trigger for mass psychosis events in history.
But back to my original question: what’s the difference between a dictatorship and democracy?
Dictators try to create mass psychosis events to secure their power, supporters of democracy try to prevent mass psychosis events with checks and balances like voting and science.
Read that again and think about it for a second.
The difference between an opinion and a scientific statement is that a scientific statement can be falsified. Everyone is entitled to have their own opinions on life, but nobody should have opinions on scientific research—that’s just not how it works.
Scientists do research to prove or falsify a thesis. When they are done, other scientists do their research and come up with a different thesis (so-called anti-thesis). After that, scientists can argue (based on their research) to come up with a so-called synthesis that they can all agree on. Based on that synthesis, the next scientists start another cycle of thesis and antithesis.
But that’s not how dictators operate. They come up with a thesis that might not even be based in reality and try to silence, ridicule, or threaten anyone who speaks up against them: no middle ground, no research, no way to change anyone’s mind.
Democracy and science need each other. You can’t have one without the other. Maybe that’s why folks who reject democratic standards also reject science.
But I am asking all these folks who hate people like me, “What’s the alternative?”
Some Republican leaders want to use the Bible as a source of information, but what about all the Americans who don’t identify as Christians? Some Conservatives want to ban Critical Race Theory (CRT) in schools, but what about all the citizens who are still suffering because of systemic racism? Almost all MAGAs reject the ideas of gender equality and LGBTQ+ rights, but what about all the discrimination and hate-speech resulting from that?
Folks like Greene, Trump, and other MAGAs somehow feel superior to science and democracy, but what makes them feel this way? To be honest, I am pretty sure that that’s not how they feel—it’s actually far worse than that.
I feel that most Republicans realized by now that demographics will make it almost impossible to win any elections in the future—unless something changes drastically.
And that’s what the MAGA movement is all about: discrediting science and democracy.
Did you ever argue with a Trump supporter? They don’t want to listen to facts—they go with their feelings.
And that brings me back again to the original question, “What’s the difference between a dictatorship and democracy?”
Supporters of democracy have to back up their opinions with scientific facts because voters will question their goals and ideas. Dictators just have to create a feeling within their followers that could be based on hate, stereotypes—or just a feeling.
And that’s exactly what the MAGA movement and folks like Greene did on social media—they created certain feelings.
I am also annoyed by the pandemic and what my life has become, but that doesn’t automatically mean that scientists are wrong about COVID-19. I also want my life back and go to a concert or a big sports event, but that doesn’t make lockdowns wrong. It’s just a feeling.
We could argue on how to deal with the pandemic. We could argue on how to really make America great again. But simply rejecting facts and solely relying on vague feelings leads us into a situation where we can’t find a middle ground.
And what happens if a group is not able to find a middle ground? I guess some folks would hope for an adult to step in.
But we are dealing with adult citizens here, so there won’t be a voice of reason solving all of our problems. The feeling of wanting an adult to step in because everyone has gone crazy is the breeding ground for dictatorships.
Every dictator claims to have the best in mind. That idiot who ruined the reputation of my home country for generations to come also claimed that he wanted to make Germany great again.
But that’s not how it works.
The only way to prevent dictators from taking power is a functioning society that is able to differentiate facts from opinions. When we lose this essential skill, we end up in a survival-of-the-fittest situation. We might end up with both sides physically fighting each other because we unlearned how to argue without disrespecting each other.
The MAGA movement and folks like Greene poisoned our political discourse for years and moved us closer to this scenario.
If Trump and his supporters manage to create a social media platform that allows folks like Greene, Rogan, and himself to spread their manipulative narratives and continue to discredit science, our society might split up into two groups. The ones who believe in science and democracy, and the ones who don’t.
And just to be clear, I am not saying that every Republican is wrong on everything at all. All I am saying is that we have to reestablish a few standards of democracy if we want to prevent the rise of a dictatorship.
We can agree to disagree on economics, migration policies, and international relationships, but we must not argue politics based on feelings and assumptions.
I agree that we are witnessing a mass psychosis at the moment. It’s just not the one Rogan, Greene, and Trump are talking about—it’s the one they created.