What Will An American Autocracy Look And Feel Like?
It will look and feel a lot like the old Jim Crow South with a few twists.
The Slow-Moving Coup Toward Autocracy Continues
We are living in a failed state. It’s failing by the day and our elected officials are lying through their teeth about the state of our frail nation. Folks are feeling out of sorts because we’re being demonized, propagandized demoralized, mistreated, and misled. The nation is having a bad case of groupthink big time, and freethinkers like myself are being punished, censored, bullied, ignored, ostracized, and silenced for saying what should seem obvious to most of us.
I don’t care. I’ll keep warning you until I can’t anymore.
Jesus said no prophet is accepted in his own hometown, so I don’t feel bad.
The nation has no real guidance. Each and every single American is having to wing it until the next shoe drops. Even if you’re listening to the government, you’re probably in disbelief about how chaotic things are. One thing that is for certain is we’re headed to an ugly place. America’s governance structure will undergo a huge transformation over the next few years. For extremely liberal and progressive, people you’re going to be in shock. Learning how to navigate the new environment could be good for your health.
It may even save your life.
What Autocracy Will Look And Feel Like
When our transition into autocracy is complete, many of us are going to be plenty uncomfortable for a variety of reasons, mostly because the people fighting to maintain White rule want America to go back to its White, segregated, Puritan, barbaric roots. Many of you have never lived that life if you haven't lived below the Mason-Dixon line. I grew up in the South. I’ve seen and heard the type of autocracy evangelic, patriotic, MAGAs envision. I’ve worshipped with the bible-thumping hypocrites who want to go back to the good ole days. They’ve made clear what the good old days are to them.
I want to share with you what you have to look forward to, especially if you’re not planning on hitting the streets, school board meetings, and challenging obstructionists in the court systems. For those of you who thought your vote was enough, it wasn’t. A biennial vote wasn’t enough to fight White Supremacy.
In fact, that vote meant nothing at all. Fighting White Supremacy means fighting the other 728 days leading up to the vote. It meant showing up and making your presence known. That never happened. Now we have autocracy in the rearview mirror chasing us down like police.
Black people in the South know what autocracy feels like because we’ve always lived under one. After 50 years, I probably will have a little adjusting to do because I’ve become accustomed to many privileges my parents didn’t have growing up, like eating inside of restaurants with White people. For many people planning on remaining in America, you’ll have some tough decisions to make, and you’ll need to understand some of the consequences of your choices if you individually and we all collectively decide to give up.
Pseudo-freedom has an expiration date and liberty is a big ole fantasy as we all will soon learn. Nothing is going to be the same when this is all over. This is the new normal.
Conservatism Will Rule Everything
When men like Trump, Steve Bannon, and Mitch McConnell say they are for conservative values it’s code, and most people have no idea what that really means. Conservatism to them means White, moral, hetero, closeted, anti-Black, wealth, and power. When autocrats deploy the term conservatism or conservative values, think Billy Graham, Southern Baptists, Kenneth Copeland, the Sons and Daughters of the Confederacy.
The LGBTQIA+ Agenda Will Likely Be Undone Immediately
Conservatives believe in marriage being between one heterosexual man and one heterosexual woman. They don’t believe in divorce. They believe women are put on earth to produce children, keep a home, go to church, and make look good. Conservatives won’t recognize trans rights and will likely reverse their marriages. Employers will again have the right to discriminate against trans persons and they’ll be ostracized to the outskirts of their respective towns. The LGBTQIA+ community has been allowed to speak and protest freely while Democrats have been in power. With the expected losses over the next two election cycles, every right given to the community will likely be taken away.
What’s worse, persons openly expressing anything contrary to good ole bible-thumping conservatism will likely be bullied brutalized, imprisoned, or killed. The justice system will allow such abuses. There won’t be many protections for them. Many states never struck their sodomy and homosexuality laws from the books, making it easy to arrest and whip into shape individuals attempting to be liberal.
Trumpers want to model America after conservative countries like Hungary and conservative Southern states like South Carolina. Traditional heterosexual families will become the norm. So, just in case any of my followers are planning on staying here in the states as the nation’s democracy fails us, you should be planning to have beards and jackets if you know what I mean. At least have some in mind. Detaining and harming people deemed undesirable will be a high priority for the sick autocrats.
Being LGBTQIA+ in a conservative country can be brutal. You need to know what’s coming so you won’t be caught off guard. Once this pseudo-democracy falls, your opinions and feelings won’t matter. You’ll be getting in line or get what conservatism has in store for you.
Abortions Will Be Banned, Birth Control Limited
White population numbers are shrinking far below the Black and Brown populations for numerous reasons. Roe vs. Wade has a strong chance of being overturned this year. If not, it will be challenged after the midterms and eventually overturned by the Supreme Court. White women won’t be able to abort those babies anymore. Exceptions may be made for other groups, as conservatives don’t want there to be more of any other racial or ethnic group. Look for those pregnancy centers to be well funded.
Sexual Liberation Will Be Shunned
Conservatives believe in traditional family values. No sex before marriage, and if you are screwing you better pretend you’re not. Women being sexually liberal will be a no-no. For men, not so much. Conservatism is all about strong (looking) White men, White male rule, with different strokes for different genders and racial identities. The American culture will change right before your very eyes. People will get in line quickly to avoid being ostracized, alienated, or ratted out. Enjoy your sexual liberation while you can. Under autocracy, it’s all likely going away. All that women stuff about being satisfied and exploring yourselves sexually will become a thing of the past.
Segregation Will Be Legal and Overt
People and businesses can’t segregate from non-White groups the way they did during Jim Crow because civil rights legislation and rulings by the Supreme Court prohibit it now, but once we go back to our Jim Crow autocracies, segregation will be legalized again. Restaurants and businesses will be able to openly discriminate and refuse non-White patron's services for whatever reasons they wish. Think you’re going to be winning a bunch of legal challenges, think again, remember White conservatives stacked the courts with people who think like them. These people are already in place and have been slowly chipping away at the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
White people will get to openly discriminate (racist more than they do currently) and there won’t be much any of us can do about it. Black people should really be figuring out how they will navigate this terrain. You’ll have little recourse. The segregation will be legal, the law of the land, and no one will be doing anything about it. If you can, start building your own businesses and helping your community build what it needs to prepare for the rolling back of our civil rights, privileges, entitlements, and liberties, to go where we want when we want.
Immigrants Will No Longer Be Welcomed
White conservatives have been dying to limit the numbers and types of people crossing into America legally and illegally. They’ve also wanted to limit the number of non-White people coming into the country on work visas. Expect America to once again begin cherrypicking the immigrants they want to enter the country to bolster White folks’ numbers. While there will always be employers and individuals willing to break the law to employ undocumented workers, autocracy will be working to ensure it keeps its Black and Brown numbers in check. Expect immigration to be limited or cease depending on what color or race you are when autocracy finally settles in and becomes the law of the land.
Interracial Dating and Race-Mixing Will Be A No-No
White conservatives hate anything that mixes races, the White ones anyway. Most things they do in the new land will be segregated. They worship apart from non-Blackness. They educate their kids away from Blackness. They vacation and dine away from Blackness where possible. Conservatives will definitely try to live among only White people, and they will detest interracial dating. Now, don’t shoot the messenger, I’m just telling you like it T.I. is in the low-down dirty South although this has pretty much always been the informal code across most of America outside of large cities.
White conservatives don’t believe in race-mixing and interracial dating.
As long as we can co-exist apart, they are happy which reduces the amount of violence the rest of us non-White folks have to deal with.
If you ignore the code whether it’s going to be formal or informal in the autocracy, you’ll be shunned, ignored, or mistreated, to say the least. Physical harm is the worst-case scenario. Biracial children unable to pass as White will be mistreated and multicultured couples will be made very uncomfortable in public. If you wanna take it back to the early 40s and 50s, Black men were killed for just smiling at White women. In the autocracy, White women are going to be for White men and White men are going to be only for White women. They don’t much care what the rest of us do, as long as it’s White on White, is right.
Travel the bible belt today and you’ll see all mannerism of couplings because of integration, but if autocrats have their way, things will go back to the way things used to be. Segregated with punishment for engaging Whiteness. If it’s worth dying or being ostracized for, have at it.
Sex Ed and Race Will Be Scrubbed From Public Education
Conservatives believe sex education should happen in the home, and they want to be in control of what’s taught to their children. Once autocracy officially takes hold, expect the local, state, and national public education institutions to change drastically. Many states are already removing books from public school libraries and sex education curriculum are being removed altogether to avoid having discussions on sex, sexuality, and gender in classrooms. Many conservative parents are already protesting LGBTQIA+ education, pronouns, etc. When autocracy is the law of the land, expect a more conservative sex education program in schools if it doesn’t disappear altogether. Expect pronoun recognition to go away too.
Christianity Will Be Codified (Again)
America has mostly been a conservative, religious nation until fairly recently. When autocracy becomes the law of the land, expect to hear and see more Jesus everywhere. Conservative values include a healthy hearty heaping of God, Jesus, heaven, and hell. There is a lot of church-going too. Church usually becomes the center of the community, and people tend to congregate more because it’s a way to fellowship and build those traditional family values. Autocracy means practicing more religion more.
Strong Men Will Be Everywhere
White men with little dick energy portraying strong men will be everywhere. We’re overrun with them now, but they’ll really be on some shit if the mini coups at the state level in 2022 and 2024 are successful. White men are going to flex on their jobs, at the gas station, in the grocery store, on sidewalks, and in anyplace they can show their asses to demonstrate the control they apparently don’t have at home on anywhere else in their lives. The world is dealing with lots of strong men and strong men wannabes right now. Stong men and conservatism go hand in hand. With autocracy comes a different type of White man energy I don’t think most of America is ready for. Do your best though. Just do your best.
Media Will Be Controlled
Like in many autocratic countries, media will be state-controlled. Think Fox News on steroids.
Expect Nativist Sentiments
White conservatives and their White grandfathereds will be patriotic as fuck! Expect asylum and migration to become political conservative topics. There will be a lot of America's first talk which is always code for White people. Conservatives will be blaring all the patriotic music, flying all their flags, including the racist one, and flashing all their covert nativist's hand gestures like gang members flashing gang signs. Love that for us.
Social Programs and Safety Net Programs Will Be Cut
Expect huge cuts to all government-funded social and safety net programs. Conservatives believe in bootstrap lies, so folks won’t have the social programs they’ve become accustomed to created by Democrats. I suggest you try to become self-sufficient as possible prior to 2024. Conservatives hate helping people become upwardly mobile unless there is some benefit to them, even if it’s social. They will help folks via a church program, but most times they see missions abroad as their time to help. If you’re in the United States, conservatives expect you people to have your shit together and not need help. Good luck with that folks.
Racism Will Be Loud And Clear
Conservatives won’t have to hide their thoughts about anyone anymore, it’s not like they have been of late anyway, but it’s going to get really bad. They’ll be free to say what they feel about folks they dislike or disagree with. Anti-Black and anti-immigrant racism will be loud and clear. Most folks won’t know what to do, and they’ll be too afraid to do anything. Folks are scared shitless now about racism, so don’t expect folks to suddenly step up to speak up under an autocracy, in fact, expect the opposite, especially from White folks.
They’ll be treating victims of racism as if they have the plague to avoid getting into the crosshair of autocratic leaders and their supporters. Expect racism to be much more widespread, pervasive, and problematic. Gird your loins children.
Expect Passports Delays/Stoppage
When Trump was in office, his administration stopped processing passport applications and didn’t renew passport applications for a spell. Expect America to not want you to leave. If you haven’t gotten those passports and visas, you may want to consider getting them over the next 3 years. When the autocratic regime comes in, they’ll be wanting to control everything, including citizens coming and leaving the country. Expect conservatives to want you to be here with their miserable asses, whether you wanna be or not lol. Just like an abusive lover, if they can’t have you, no one else is going to have you either.
Look For A Shift From Liberalism to Nationalism
Kiss liberalism goodbye. With autocracy, nationalism will become the law of the land. America has been liberal for a long time. Conservatives are itching to roll back anything that empowers liberals, including decreasing the role of feminism, getting rid of liberal judges, silencing independent journalists, and punishing liberal higher education institutions. Anything with the potential to counter conservatism will be silenced. Enjoy independent thinking and independent journalism while you still can. When it’s gone, it may be ten years or so before it returns, if ever.
Democracy As We Know It Will Be Done
Democracy will be done. Democratic principles used to guide and govern America will no longer be used. Rules will be changed, powers will be taken away, and trust will be eroded. In the South, few Black people participate in democracy. What I’m describing we Black folks have always lived so it won’t be anything new to us. For liberal and progressive White people accustomed to practicing democracy, you may struggle a bit. You’ll be okay. If Black people can survive hundreds of years of autocracy, you can too White people.
The Economy Will Still Be Terrible
America’s economy won’t be any better, in fact, it will likely be worse for most of you. If you’re not accustomed to being poor, buckle up baby. Conservatives hate unions and worker protections. The mindset dates back to slavery. They believe vehemently in trickle-down, even the poorest conservatives do despite it countering their interests. Expect more tax cuts for the rich and the working class to shoulder the burden. Folks will be fooled because conservative politicians will sell citizens lies about fellow citizens doing well and how their economic schemes benefit all people. Eventually, we’ll end up like some of the other autocratic countries across the globe. Poorer, silenced, not respected, and alone. Autocracy forces communities to rely on each other to survive.
Families with land will have to learn to work it for survival because they will lose wealth or have it taken by the government. In some autocratic nations. the government prohibits you from owning any assets over a certain monetary value to ensure you can’t flee or overthrow the government. Money is going to be a problem unless you’re uber-rich. If you can buy land or partner with folks who own some and begin growing food and buying seeds and living communally at least you can survive. Many people are going to starve to death because there won’t be any jobs and automation just makes things bad for humans.
Conservatives believe in controlling everything you do though they love to say they believe their way of life makes us all freer. It doesn’t. While I see the benefits to some conservative values, they aren’t always fair. Conservative folks enjoy telling on their neighbors, reporting you to authorities, and monitoring your activities to ensure you’re not doing anything to compromise their values. Autocrats know people hate their guts (lol), so they’ll be monitoring our conversations, writings, and phone calls to cut down on the uprisings. Don’t you just love that for us?
Switching from democracy to autocracy for a lot of people will be a challenge. I just named a few things to think about. For many, it’s going to be damned impossible to live under an autocracy. I may have to scrub my writings from the web and work with people locally if we’re considered demagogues or trouble makers, but I think I can survive an autocracy just fine unless they decide to randomly start killing and rounding up masses of Black people which is highly possible.
America has been liberal for quite some time, more so than most people care to admit. Having lived in a conservative part of the country for fifty years, I can attest to how much America has changed over the past 25 years. Autocracy seems to be inevitable. We need to understand what it will look and feel like. Once the scary, violent part is over, the new autocratic government will take some getting used to. The goal of conservatism is for White conservatives and evangelicals to be at the top of the social hierarchy. Liberals and progressives will either be demoralized into control, reprogrammed, or killed if they refuse to accept the new system. Violence will be the new law of the land.
And if you think it’s only going to last a few years, think again. Just look at Russian. Putin got into power and he’s never leaving. He smites his opponents when they least expect it. He even has his enemies killed after they manage to flee to other countries. Autocracies are dangerous. Challenging White Supremacy in an autocracy can get you taken out of here. I hope you’re ready.
We can’t rely on politicians to do the right thing. They have proven they will let us die so they can live. We’re on our own now. Fight harder now, or practice living in an autocracy for later.
In any event, it’s almost too late to fight now. If America doesn’t stop the autocrats from getting into power, you’ll need to learn how to live under duress like Black people, especially if you’ve been liberal and enjoyed all the privileges Whiteness had to offer you. Your time is running out, so enjoy the last days of liberalism while you still can.
Once autocracy takes root, it’ll be just like living in the old bible belt during Jim Crow and possibly a post Reconstruction Era vibe, and trust me, it’s different.
Marley K., 2022
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