I read an article in The Washington Post by John Woodrow Cox on white supremacist Richard Bertrand Spencer. The article was dated November 22, 2016 and after I read it I felt compelled to coin a new word for how I feel about Mr. Spencer because while I admire his moxie and determination, I deplore – not him, but his ideals. Accordingly, this new word is ‘addemiplore’ (pronounced; ad – de – my – plore) which is a combination of the words ‘admire’ and ‘deplore’.
I took the liberty to excerpt one of the statements that Mr. Cox made in his article entitled ’Let’s party like it’s 1933‘: Inside the alt-right world of Richard Spencer. Mr. Cox said “But to those who track hate groups, Spencer is dangerous because, when he doesn’t want to, he doesn’t look or sound or act dangerous.” For exactly this reason, Mr. Spencer is indeed an extremely dangerous man. In the event that this observation by Mr. Cox is not clear enough for you, we can explore the ‘why he is a dangerous man’ a bit more deeply by way of this short anecdote. If you are ever confronted by two dogs and feel equally threatened by both you should always remember, it’s not the dog that confronts you, growls and bears its fangs at you to show that it feels that you are a threat and will attack if you do not freeze or if you continue to move forward; instead, it is the dog that will tuck its tail, lower its head and appear to cowardly slink away. That is the dog that will quietly sneak up behind you and bury its fangs in you; that is the dog that you must watch very closely.
Because, once it buries its fangs in you and brings you down, gone will be the dog that appeared cowardly and slinked away. It – in the case of someone like Richard Spencer – will immediately morph into an apex predator, grab you by the throat and hold that grip until there is no life left in you. And once it is sure that you are dead, it will take its time and completely devour you while relishing the taste of your yet warm and once life-giving blood. If this sounds overly gruesome, then I have achieved my goal. Because no matter how gruesome it sounds, I can never make it sound gruesome enough to describe what Mr. Spencer and people like him who pursue such a course are doing to the American people and the democracy that we espouse, stand for and hold dear!
Based on their comments in Mr. Cox’s article, it is Obvious that Mr. Spencer’s parents do not to agree with his politics. But like most parents who love their children, they will stand by him to the greatest extent possible without completely jettisoning the principles by which they themselves live. In other words, even if they do not support him in what he is doing, they will not give him up as reprobate unless – based on principle – they have no other choice. This is completely understandable. These things notwithstanding, I want to get back to why I find it necessary to coin a new word for Mr. Spencer and why I find him to be addemiplore.
While Mr. Spencer is a charismatic young man who can charm his audiences – friend or foe, and put them at ease with these skills, Americans must remain vigilant and not be fooled by him less we become his unwitting prey. I admire Mr. Spencer as a person who seems to hold deeply felt ideas and ideals about how he views America and who is willing to be a leader and fight for those ideas and ideals; and I would strongly defend his right to do this. But I deplore him as a person who dares to hold ideas and ideals that proclaim that all men are not created equal and are not endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights … And despite that admiration of his moxie and my commitment to defend his right to express his feelings and seek implementation of those ideas and ideals, I will even more strongly oppose him in his efforts to implement them.
These strong thoughts and feelings that I have and the pride that I have in my country and in being an American cause me to once again reflect on the meaning of the word statesmanship; a word that must surely be inscribed upon the hearts of all politicians who are true patriots. Hence, the thought that so many Republicans that I assumed to be statesmen have acted so cowardly prior to and during this 2016 general election is mind-boggling. How, in the name of democracy, could they have allowed for so many Americans to be disenfranchised in the name of party unity? How could they, and how can they, continue to observe these efforts at disenfranchisement and also stand back and watch President-elect Donald J. Trump thumb his nose at the American political system (he is breaking every rule and all of the political norms) while making a mockery of America and making us the laughingstock of the world? I can’t believe that this is happening…but it is. Have we no decency, pride or dignity left?!
The Republican party has been hijacked by Mr. Trump with the aid of Steve Bannon – whom Mr. Trump has selected to be his chief strategist, Richard Bertrand Spencer, and other white supremacists like him. Mr. Trump’s silence with regard to these white supremacists groups, until his hand was forced due to heavy political pressure, was deafening and his refusal until very recently – due to that same political pressure, to overtly denounce and distance himself from these white supremacist ideas and ideals continues to be frightening to many of the American people.
In addition to his reluctance to denounce and distance himself from these groups, he is continuing to surround himself with people who will only lead him further into the abyss; among these people are some whom many Americans associate with the white supremacist movement. Mr. Spencer is working very hard at trying to reinvent himself by referring to himself as ‘alt-right.’ But his efforts will never amount to anything more than putting lipstick on a pig; its still a pig.
And Mr. Spencer, no matter what he calls himself and how successful he might be at subtly coaxing others into calling him by that same title, he will still remain a white supremacist. And to avoid encouraging him and those like him and giving them impetus such as that which candidate Trump gave them throughout his campaign, that is what all Americans should call him. A pig with lipstick is still a pig and Mr. Spencer clothe in the title of ‘alt-right’ is still a white supremacist. He should not be so ashamed of that that he would seek to hide behind a word that he concocted, alt-right, (kind of like my made up word, addemiplore) if he harbors those beliefs.
Such a devastating defeat is hard to accept especially in light of the gigantic leap to the right which it appears that America might soon take. This defeat is even harder to swallow when Mr. Spencer and those like him who have been lurking in the shadows for so long have now decided to come out of those shadows to celebrate Mr. Trump’s victory and gloat. Although the Democrats received substantially more votes from the American people than did Mr. Trump and the Republicans, they seem content to remain silent while Mr. Trump, congressional Republicans, and the white supremacist hangers-on strive to grab the reigns of mainstream power. Right now, the Democratic Party still seems to be suffering from shell shock because of Secretary Hillary Clinton’s devastating loss to Mr. Trump and therefore are scared and unable to reason, walk or talk. Perhaps I am confusing that phenomenon with contentment. Regardless of why Democrats are not doing anything they are caught in a vacuum so where they go from here remains to be seen.
Eulus Dennis – author, Operation Rubik’s Cube and Living Between The Line