By Wayne Allensworth
Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help (Psalm 146:3)
Why anyone believes that another four years of Trump would be any different than his first presidential term eludes me. That’s assuming the globalist Swamp and its Deep State enforcement arm won’t block his candidacy and would allow him to take office should he win an election. If riding on the Trump train isn’t your cup of tea, though, perhaps Ron DeSantis is your man. DeSantis, after all, has actually taken steps to fight woke madness, did not lockdown Florida amid the COVID hysteria, and has at least made noises (not to mention his Martha’s Vinyard stunt) about curtailing illegal immigration. He is the smoother, more articulate, and coherent candidate. And he won’t embarrass his voters.
That’s all to the good, of course. There are, however, some “buts” to consider if you are serious about defending and maintaining historic America’s heritage. DeSantis’ record indicates that he may not be the savior his backers make him out to be. Even if he were, politics, particularly national-level politics, is not going to save us in the long run.
For starters, DeSantis, like another grandstanding GOP governor, Greg Abbott of my home state of Texas, talks a good fight, but has not taken the next step of challenging Washington directly on immigration by attempting to actually remove illegal aliens from American soil. Taking that next step could foment a constitutional crisis, something that may be necessary to galvanize resistance to the globalist Leviathan.
But that, as they say, is not the crux of the matter. We should have learned something about DeSantis and his actual view of what he is supposed to be defending by his earlier actions.
In 2019, DeSantis jumped onto the iconoclast bandwagon, following up on an initiative by his predecessor, another Republican, Rick Scott, to remove a statue in the US Capital’s National Statuary Hall, one of two representing Florida, of Confederate General Edmund Kirby Smith. Smith was slated for replacement by a statue of Mary Mcleod Bethune, founder of Bethune-Cookman University, an historically black college in Daytona Beach, Florida.
In his statement on the request to replace General Smith, DeSantis wrote that the Bethune statue will “represent the best of who we are as Floridians to visitors from around the world in our nation’s capitol.”
“Who we are” again. Well, who are “we”? Which “we” did Governor DeSantis have in mind? And why should he be so concerned about the attitude of “visitors from around the world?”
It’s abundantly clear to this observer that DeSantis did not mean what I call the American Remnant, the old Americans who defined the country and set its political and cultural norms. And to be entirely candid, unhyphenated, rooted members of the American founding stock and those who assimilated to that national core should not have expected anything else from Governor DeSantis.
True, to my knowledge mobs have not taken down statues in Florida, Confederate or otherwise, but a promising Republican governor in gushing terms endorsed taking one down in the capital. Thus, I would caution against making too many assumptions about what his sentiments and actual loyalties are. DeSantis is, after all, a politician, and his main goal is becoming president. In one instance—regarding removing illegal aliens—he did what we would expect from an ambitious political figure: throw some red meat to the base but refrain from taking a real political risk. On the Kirby Smith statue, he behaved as practically every GOP politician has when the opportunity arose to defend the old American heritage. Defending us is not his main priority.
It’s not hard to see why.
The old America’s national consciousness has been seriously weakened. The powers-that-be are hellbent on erasing our national memory, making our people and country the target of vicious and unrelenting calumny. Even more to the point, we are being physically displaced by mass immigration. The Florida of Ron DeSantis is as alien to the country of General Kirby Smith as the dark side of the moon. South Florida is effectively an extension of the Caribbean basin, its identity groups’ eyes turned elsewhere, to Cuba, for example, still beating the all-but-dead horse of Fidel Castro’s regime.
The erasure of the old America is probably not very important to them, while any “we” I would recognize as such has been shamed into silence. Our collective memory is the basis of collective identity, and without that collective identity, we—the American “we”—are disarmed and incapable of resistance. Acknowledging the valor of the South’s heroes and confirming regional identities were once essential elements of a national compact. And if it needs repeating, if the Southern cause was illegitimate because of slavery, then the American Revolution and many of its heroes were illegitimate as well. And we have suddenly arrived at the anti-America of the 1619 Project: The great country that has turned out to be a pretty good place for minorities, slavery or not, is unworthy of existence and suited only for extinction.
So don’t expect Governor DeSantis, should he become President DeSantis, to take any, or even be able to take any, extraordinary measures to reverse that trend. The residents of the post-American portion of Florida may be sane in that they reject the demonic craziness of woke ideology, but they are simply not us, and we should not expect them to be. I could say the same about large swaths of the rest of the country as presently constituted. Politics alone, especially national politics, are not going to save us, much less restore the country that we have already lost.
Yes, sometimes miracles do happen. What we can hope for is a practically miraculous revival of national consciousness among those who have deep roots here, creating a basis for preserving something for ourselves, perhaps even something resembling a new homeland.
A DeSantis presidency may be desirable, but it would at best be another tactical victory, another delaying action, perhaps buying some time for us. I write “perhaps,” as the Swamp is still firmly in control, and the whole managerial apparatus would be arrayed against a President DeSantis as it was against Trump. If we can get anything positive done at the national level, especially on immigration, that’s all to the good. But if we have any real hope for carving out a place for ourselves, that hope could more likely be realized at the state and local level. A redivision of state boundaries, for instance, would be a major step toward separating from anti-America.
As this writer has noted many times, a nascent and growing Middle American resistance is out there. Parents resist Critical Race Theory in the schools. They attend school board meetings to oppose drag-queen story hours and pornographic books in the libraries. County sheriffs refuse to enforce gun control. Heritage groups who have defended American historical sites, and secession movements, aimed at separating from leftist states or major cities, have appeared. With all the focus on traditional “horse race” politics, this vast reservoir of potential American resistance has been overlooked. If a leader or leaders could organize and coordinate a grassroots movement, it could be a force to be reckoned with.
Finally, we have to acknowledge the limits of politics at all levels. The real work of fighting the cultural and spiritual battles in our own lives begins at home. Even if we somehow separated from anti-America, that would only be the beginning of creating a new home for ourselves and our posterity. There is no political savior for us who will ride a white horse into the global capital and make America great again. Not DeSantis, and not Trump. The damage has already been done. There is no going back. We have to rely on ourselves.
Chronicles contributor Wayne Allensworth is the author of The Russian Question: Nationalism, Modernization, and Post-Communist Russia, and a novel, Field of Blood.