In our current political climate with Republican-controlled Legislative and Executive branches despite the most recent election ending with a popular vote that favored the Democratic candidate by over 2.8 million, it can be agreed upon the country is divided. Both unsubstantiated claims of false media and actual false media contribute to this heavily rooted partisan division. President Trump quite frequently speaks out about the false media claiming it “fake news”. At this point in American politics, it is important to recognize and distinguish between true and false information.
A popular film among the conservative community is the new documentary “Death of a Nation”. This film explores the history of fascism, white supremacy, and racism and how the Democratic Party allegedly is to blame. All personal political beliefs set aside, the lack of acknowledgment of historical context in “Death of a Nation” should be to members of any political party. In a political climate like ours, it’s important all sources are analyzed in order to ensure American citizens are given proper information in order for them to make an informed decision when participating in the democratic process.
“Death of a Nation” is a film directed by Dinesh D’Souza, often referring to himself as the “Michael Moore of the right.” D’Souza has directed two other documentaries including “Obama’s America” and “America: Imagine the World Without Her.” “Obama’s America” outlined D’Souza’s conspiracy theory that Obama was a brainwashed anti-colonialist controlled by his Kenyan father to destroy America. His film “America: Imagine the World Without Her” presented the premise that slavery was blown out of proportion. D’Souza has several other documentaries and books that attempt to debunk racism and blame the left for 9/11.
“Death of a Nation” was recently released and pertains to the current President. D’Souza compares President Trump to Abraham Lincoln, blames the Democratic Party for slavery, and implies the political parties never made their ideological switch following the Civil War.
Prior to the civil war, the Republican Party was heavily represented in the North while the Democrats controlled the South. The Republican Party was adamant on the expansion of federal power and protecting the rights of minority groups including African-Americans, while the Democrats opposed both. The parties switched their ideological stances gradually from 1836-1920 and can be linked back to a Democrat named William Jennings Bryan. Bryan blurred party lines by emphasizing the government’s role in ensuring social justice through expansions of federal power which historically, a Republican stance. The Republican Party didn’t immediately adopt the opposite position of favoring limited government. “Instead, for a couple of decades, both parties are promising an augmented federal government devoted in various ways to the cause of social justice,”although there isn’t one specific event that can be pointed to as the one cause of the shift, one can easily compare the ideals of the Republican and Democratic party now those prior to the civil war and see the pronounced differences. The Republican Party of the past advocated for big government, social justice, and an emphasis on fighting the disenfranchisement of minorities. In contrast, the Democratic Party advocated for limited government and is conservative on issues concerning minorities and social justice.
There is significant historical evidence that refutes the plot of D’Souza’s, “Death of a Nation”. American citizens should be concerned about being fed false media and facts but there should be a realization of which political party is actually feeding it to them. It is our duty as educated Americans to distinguish between facts and lies and help others do the same.