Trump’s Capitol Insurrection as Radical 1960s Street Theater

Trump’s Capitol Insurrection as Radical 1960s Street Theater—with real guns and goals.

“If you can remember the ’60s you weren’t there.” (Anonymous)

I entered college in New England in 1968 as a fresh-faced freshman from the Midwest—just in time for the most tumultuous year of a genuinely tumultuous decade.

The Anti-Vietnam War movement was in full swing, as was the Black Power movement, the Feminist consciousness-raising movement, the Free Love movement/The Pill, the Environmental movement, the Psychedelic turn-on-and-drop-out movement, the Back-to-the-land commune movement, the Transcendental Meditation guru movement, and more.

This was later augmented in the 1970s by the Human Potential movement such as Esalen Institute, EST (Erhard Seminars Training), and the New Age movement of “love, light, & spirit”. I lived in Palo Alto and Berkeley during that less-than-beguiling decade.

My deep and sustained immersion into the American Left counter-culture scenes in elite university towns did not turn me into either a radical or a Yuppie with a taste for cocktails, crudités, and revolution à la Che Guevara.

Rather, that “age of discontinuity” made me into a confirmed skeptic of Utopian schemes, human perfectibility, and anyone trying to provide enlightenment for a price.

What I saw from roughly 1968 to 1981 was a lot of academic posturing for the imminent revolt of the masses, emanating from the safe and secure tenured faculty lounges of the ivory towers… and savvy, streetwise con artists manipulating the naive for their own financial gain and, often, sexual gratification.

Basically, these radical entrepreneurs and self-appointed leaders were like televangelist “prosperity preachers” for the over-educated and privileged.

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