The New Yorker: What Normalization Means.

From three days ago. I have to wonder what 'normalization' even means, as used by others. I keep forgetting that many have no historical base from which to decide what has been taken as 'normal' and what hasn't. I take this term as a personal insult.

Did we ever 'normalize' Dick Cheney? I don't think so. Remember the demonstrations at the election of GWB? Yeah, you don't, do you.

Reagan was 'accepted' - gradually - after election, but a stalwart left continued to battle his lapses and his cabinet (read of Ed Meese and People's Park - R and M were scarier than Bannon). Sam Donaldson (bless him) at press conferences consistently challenged Reagan, constantly throwing him back on his heels. We all called him "Bonzo" for goodness sake. Reagan's reelection only won by 18% [Mondale was even more lackluster than Clinton]. We worked really hard to toss Reagan out on his ear, to a very similar disappointment as today.

Did we ever 'normalize' Nixon? Hell no. You know Kent State. Remember Jackson State? IDA? Probably not. Dark, hopeless times. But look at how he imploded - you can take hope from that.

I'm of an age to remember these things directly. If you don't, take comfort in the fact that no, these personalities were not normalized. Yes, we accepted them enough to be able to go about our daily business. But that doesn't mean we agreed or aligned with any of their policies. We were not sheep. The Democratic Party continues to forget that the most important mobilization is just before an election. We keep ending up in this gutter, over and over. One decade, perhaps, we'll learn the lesson.

Normalization is another friggin' bogeyman of the Fox News variety. A made-up concern. Folks are writing about this as if it is inevitable, some great evil to be guarded against. If the Left wants to ape the paranoia tactics of the Right, this is exactly the way to go about it. But it's not a winning strategy. Works with fools, not with intelligentsia. Dems, as a mass, don't get worked up for years. Hours, yes. Weeks, maybe. Years, no. Look at this election! Case in point. If you want to oppose in this fashion, well, your next four years will be spent spouting paranoia on a daily basis to keep everyone's hackles up. Even that won't work, because your followers will block you. Progressives are completely different than the right-wing faithful.

Look at our President-elect. A reality-TV personality. Will that ever be normal? You'd have to be crazy to think so. The good news is, he'll trickle out enough insanity to keep even the most lazy Democrat awake and aware.

But - and this is my warning - the more y'all make Nazi comparisons, the more you're driving the very people you want active to hunker down and hide to save themselves. I see it, I hear it. Economy's hurt enough people in these parts. People are frightened to death. Think about what you're doing.

You need to be sowing strength and courage, steadfastness. Not fear and panic. "We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness ..."