Despite all its contradictions and imperfections, the United States remains the most authentic form of liberal democracy in the world: citizens of different origins are more integrated than in Europe and public power is more limited. The cult of individual freedom and bottom-up democracy are the best defense against totalitarianism, to which we are still much more vulnerable on this side of the Atlantic
The tragic events that occurred recently in the United States, tragic both in the initial episode (the brutal killing of George Floyd by a police officer from Minneapolis, Minnesota) and in the subsequent ones (the equally brutal looting and violence by a minority of the demonstrators who caused death and destruction in many American cities) have made a wave of condemnation with absolute tones and without the slightest mitigating factor of the entire American political and social system flare up in the mass media even in Italy, with few praiseworthy exceptions. What remains the most authentic form of liberal democracy in the world to this day – meaning the term liberal in the classical sense as that way of conceiving social relationships that values individual freedom and responsibility above all else and is linked to both democracy that social improvement – has been portrayed as an "endemically" racist system, run by despotic and violent police forces, which can be approached without the slightest scruple to the worst tyrannies of recent history. Someone went even further, and not happy with the comparison with the current totalitarian regimes based on politics, such as the Chinese communist one, or religious, such as those of many Middle Eastern countries, said that the violence carried out by the minority of demonstrators, some however, part of real subversive and violent stable organizations, they are the only legitimate way to put an end to the wickedness embodied in American institutions.
I do not dwell on the dramatic contradictions of those who attack the United States and instead excuse, for example, the violent repression of thousands of people in Hong Kong or the massacre of Christians (sometimes legalized and often however tolerated) in the Middle East, speaking in these cases of "political clashes", of "interreligious conflicts", on which a "balanced" judgment must be made: others have already highlighted the absurdities proper to these reasonings. For my part, I would like to make a small contribution to better understanding the principles on which American democracy and society are based, of which we often mimic the less important things (first of all the use of English, often patchy, also for more banal talks between Italians), while we refuse to examine and indeed we despise the positive aspects of overseas social and political life, which instead could serve as terms of comparison with our own in order to a possible improvement of the latter. These are positive aspects that have come into full light precisely during the recent unrest, and which must be compared with the negativities reported by most of the media to prevent (very) partial truths from giving rise, regardless of good faith or less than those who enunciate them, to (not to contradict me I say it in the language of Dante) "false information", which inevitably lead to incorrect judgments, first of all because they are not complete and meditated in their content.
For example, when defining the American one a racist society, it is not taken into account that the United States is the only multi-ethnic nation in the world, made up of human beings from every corner of the planet who, while maintaining their original identities, all feel at home. the same way Americans, which is expressed almost perfectly when speaking of Anglo-Americans, Italian-Americans, African-Americans, Hispanic Americans, Japanese-Americans etc. The United States, together perhaps only with Israel (where, moreover, this is explained by the common Jewish identity of immigrants), is the only country in which immigration (despite all its problems, however exaggerated by the politically correct media) it works, as it represents a resource that improves society and is destined to function in the future as it is based on a few common principles accepted by all, that of individual freedom that allows social pluralism and that of democratic self-government that allows management (also here with all its shortcomings) from the bottom of public affairs, both at the level of local power in individual states and at the federal level. Already in the early decades of the nineteenth century, that fine observer of American democracy, who was Alexis de Tocqueville, pointed this out. Moreover, like all human things, individual freedom and self-government can also degenerate pathologically and lead to the "closure in themselves" of social or ethnic groups, which is at the origin of the most condemnable aspects of "racism" American, but it would be a serious mistake to exchange the pathology with the system rule. American society, thanks also to its empirical approach, always open to correcting its errors, highlighted also thanks to civil protests, has managed to overcome the most aberrant aspects of racism and today men and women of all ethnicities occupy positions of relevance in the various sectors of society, which does not happen in European (including Italian) societies, where immigrants are almost always confined (with a less flashy, but no less real form of racism) in "protected" social areas without integrating into the national society, also because many in our local ruling classes, by virtue of today's cultural relativism, deny the usefulness or even the existence of common values which should represent the real glue between immigrants and residents of a country.
Likewise, when it is claimed that an authoritarian, almost tyrannical state based on the action of a violent and repressive police force exists in the United States, it is forgotten that the American police forces (local, state and federal) are the ones that the world have fewer powers towards citizens. Public power in the United States, as in all the countries of Anglo-Saxon tradition, is in fact the heir of the monarchy with limited power (established in Britain with the "glorious revolution" of 1689 and whose principles have been taken up and strengthened by the founding fathers of the Union with the Constitution of 1787 and with the Charter of Rights, the "Bill of rights" of 1789) and not of the monarchy with absolute power as happens for the continental European states (including Italy). In the United States, in fact, every act of the police force, except for emergency interventions, to be effective towards citizens must also be approved on the merits by judges represented by freelancers "lent" to the judging function and therefore led by personal culture to evaluate things from the point of view of the rights of individuals, contrary to what happens in all continental Europe (and in Italy in particular) where the judges, represented by "bureaucratic" public officials, essentially operate only a formal control on the respect by part of the police force within the limits established by law, a law which is often interpreted, at least by us, in a different way from case to case. All this does not prevent serious violations by law enforcement agencies from occurring in the United States, as in all countries including ours (and we limit ourselves to Western democracies: police violence is legalized in dictatorships): this is part of the pathology of society and individual moral life, pathology that also affects some human beings who wear the uniform. The tradition of limited public power typical of the United States, however, makes these episodes more exposed and allows them to be exposed more easily: in the face of a case of abuse of police power, it is unfortunately very likely that the images that document it are acquired "in the proceedings" of a long judicial investigation and that any protests "from below" (for those led by the top of some dominant political concept there is always room, even when the police do not abuse, but merely carry out his duties) are appeased by the mass media in view of the future assessment of "any" (it is always said so) responsibilities.
Just the popular protests were perhaps the aspect of these dramatic events that, in the opinion of the writer, has been described in a worse way by the mass media and by most commentators, an aspect whose reality has been "distorted", in many cases, perhaps without being fully aware of it, in a very heavy way, so much so that there has even been talk of the "structural crisis" of the American state, without taking into account that protests are the strength of a liberal democracy such as that from overseas. In general, in media reports and in the analyzes of commentators, only violent protests (which would not deserve any comment nor much less any, even indirect, expression of sympathy) and those (respectable as not violent, but not shareable) which are based on a black / white distinction that does nothing but propose an inverted version of a vision of society divided into races, perhaps colored with the principles of politically correct, where an abominable "physical" racism ( blacks are inferior) an equally condemnable "moral" racism is replaced (whites are guilty). Fortunately, which many mass media have not talked about and many commentators have overlooked, most of the demonstrations were of a different type and were aimed at protesting against the abuses committed by certain individuals who are part of the police and not against a race, a social class or some other collective entity. Many of the protest marches that took place peacefully across the United States consisted of uniformed policemen of all races who marched arm in arm with civilians of all races, to emphasize that the cops (black and white) are not against citizens (black and white). It seems fair to say that it is in manifestations of this kind, referring to single people and not to racial groups, that the dream ( "I have a dream …" ) of one of the great American heroes, Martin Luther King jr., Of see men treated based on their behavior and not on the color of their skin.
Of course racism towards blacks still exists in the United States and there are abuses committed by the police, and these are realities that must be rightly criticized (even bitterly), but many more are the things of American democracy that must be praised and from which should take example, among which first of all the cult of individual freedom and democracy from below, which have always represented the best defense against the totalitarianism that carries out its crimes often cloaking themselves with humanitarian reasons and which did not end with the collapse of the regimes of the twentieth century, but which can always recur under the guise of politically correct and "restorative" violence of the (real or alleged) injustices of the world: in the face of this danger on this side of the Atlantic we are much more vulnerable.
This is a machine translation from Italian language of a post published on Atlantico Quotidiano at the URL http://www.atlanticoquotidiano.it/quotidiano/ondata-di-antiamericanismo-con-il-pretesto-del-caso-floyd-ma-gli-usa-restano-la-piu-compiuta-democrazia-liberale/ on Thu, 11 Jun 2020 04:08:00 +0000.