An emerging reality of the current American presidency is that any normalcy Joe Biden may have promised was entirely fake.
The latest exhibit is the first anniversary of George Floyd’s murder in Minneapolis occurring as about six states are enacting or planning restrictions on teaching what Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and Gov. Kristi Noem of South Dakota are calling “critical race theory.”
This was the sort of hyper-polarization Mr. Biden was supposed to arbitrate. Instead, he marches leftward, covering his trail with pixie-dust rhetoric.
As always, it defaults to the media to substitute its own explanations for the country’s social tension. Two reporters for the New York Times connected the dots in a piece this week: “Republicans’ attacks on critical race theory are in sync with the party’s broad strategy to run on culture-war issues in the 2022 midterm elections.” Little wonder so many say they are tuning out politics and the media. The reductionism is hopeless.
This new divide is a textbook example of the Founding Fathers’ (if one may still cite them) fears about destructive political factions. “By a faction,” James Madison wrote in his now constantly cited Federalist No. 10, he meant citizens “who are united and actuated by some common impulse of passion, or of interest, adversed to the rights of other citizens” (emphasis added). We are there.