Time for centrist Democrats to wake up – By George J. Marlin

The following appeared on Monday, March 21, 2022, in the Blank Slate Media newspaper chain and on its website, theisland360.com:

New York State’s Democratic Party, its representatives in the state Legislature, and its governor, have moved further and further to the left because they fear the wrath of the Democratic Socialists of America.

When the DSA’s poster child, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, handily beat 10-term Congressman Joseph Crowley in the 2018 Democratic Primary, the Democratic establishment went into a state of shock.

Since AOC’s victory, the DSA has been on the ascendency. Its candidates have defeated other mainstream Democratic officeholders, including Brooklyn Assemblyman Joe Lentol, a 47-year incumbent.

DSA has been using its clout to push for passage of radical legislation in Albany. This included the “No Bail,” law which is a major contributor to the crime spree in New York’s inner cities.

This month the DSA poked its nose into foreign affairs. In a statement released on March 8, the DSA, while condemning the Russian invasion of Ukraine, called on the United States “to withdraw from NATO and to end the imperialist expansion that set the stage for that conflict.”

Calling the North Atlantic Treaty Organization “imperialist,” an alliance that not only contained the Soviet Union but permitted democracies to flourish in Western Europe in the post-World War II era—was a bit much for me.

Apparently, I was not alone.

The New York Times reported on March 9 that DSA’s statement “drew rebukes from a White House spokesman and from a number of Democratic candidates and elected officials, from Long Island congressional contenders to officials in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.”

DSA’s absurd response to the war in Ukraine induced me to take a look at the organization, whose largest chapter is in New York City.

Learning about DSA was easy. Its website describes its history, programs, policies, etc.

DSA was founded in the early 1970s when two radical organizations—the New American Movement and the Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee—joined hands. (Many of its charter members were formerly affiliated with the 1960s SDS—Students for Democratic Action).

DSA was initially dedicated to opposing “corporate domination of America” and later developed an “ideological and organizational socialist presence among trade unions, community, feminist and people of color and other activists.”

Opposing the “neo liberal Democratic Clinton Agenda” and disappointed with the Obama administration’s “moderate program,” DSA embraced the Occupy Wall Street movement and later Bernie Sander’s presidential campaign.

As for DSA ideology, the organization embraces the brand of Marxism developed by Antonio Gramsci (1891-1937).

Gramsci rejected Karl Marx’s view that man’s history is the story of economic class conflict. “The real class conflicts,” Gramsci argued, “are cultural … and only after the existing culture has been thoroughly destroyed can the new culture—and the new economics—be established.”

Hence, to bring down our way of life, DSC promotes “identity politics,” which Manhattan Institute scholar Heather MacDonald has pointed out “holds that human beings are defined by their skin color, sex, and sexual preference; that discrimination based on those characteristics has been the driving force in Western civilization; and that America remains a profoundly bigoted place, where heterosexual white males continue to deny opportunity to everyone else.”

DSA also “unapologetically stands in solidarity with the Palestinian people in their ongoing struggle for liberation.”

And last September, they condemned as “barbaric” the “vote by the congressional house to fund Israel an additional $1 billion for their ‘Iron Dome’ Missile Defense System.”

DSA opposes the “Iron Dome” that protects the only truly democratic country in the Middle Ease from terrorist attacks. How ludicrous is that?

Yet, despite its positions, the DSA is hijacking New York’s Democratic Party.

Why?

Because most mainstream Democrats have not been voting in primaries. Turnout on any given primary day for state and local races is only about 10 percent. And low participation permits the well-organized DSA to win many races. For instance, last year, Buffalo’s incumbent mayor, Byron Brown, lost to Democratic Socialist India Walton.

Out of 289,000 Buffalo Democrats, only 21,000 came out to vote. Walton won with 51 percent.

If centrist Democrats don’t wake up, organize and get out to vote, they will cede control of their party to illiberal extremists. And New York will continue down the road to becoming the East Coast version of California.

Explore posts in the same categories: Articles/Essays/Op-Ed, Blank Slate Media

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