The Elusive First Follower
Allow me to inject part of my own professional work into today’s post.
The following video is detailing something that we refer to in organizing as the First Follower Principle. In short, this principle describes how for any movement to succeed the leader of any such movement must be legitimized. If there is a passionate individual marching on the capitol but nobody follows him or her than this individual lacks legitimacy. If; however, a second individual emerges then this person automatically legitimizes the first person and makes it much easier for others to join. People no longer feel pressured to join the “lone wolf” but instead can join two people in collaboration. As more and more people join, there is less pressure to feel isolated and more of a sense of belonging. Eventually, there reaches a critical mass where a majority of people feel comfortable in joining in whatever the activity may be.
Here today on May 21st in the year of our Lord 2019, the Republican Party has a single dancer on that hill. That dancer is Justin Amash, a Tea Party member from the 3rd Congressional district of Michigan. Amash has come out as the first Republican congressperson to state that Donald Trump engaged in impeachable conduct with a blistering statement on Sunday. In a day and age where the Republican Party has gone all in on Donald Trump, it was a remarkable that it came not only from a Republican but also that is came from someone in a fairly competitive district. Since his statement, Amash has been tweeted at by Moron Hitler and has already gotten a primary challenger from the Trump Reich, er, Right. Yet, despite this, Amash has not only doubled down on his statement but as of this morning he was seen outside the Capitol steps lecturing school children about the dangers of Donald Trump.
The question now becomes who is Amash’s first follower? Who steps up and legitimizes Amash and leads to the eventual dam breaking on the Republican Party? Because as treasonous and vile as Republicans are, they are unquestionably opportunistic. If they see the Trumptanic headed toward a massive electoral defeat in 2020 that forces them out of a job, then they will look for ways to save their own hides. They know Trump will turn on them in a heartbeat and they feel no shame in returning the favor. The question becomes what will cause Trump to become so politically toxic that additional Republicans are forced to abandon him. Behind closed doors, many agree with Amash’s statements. But to come forward and say them publicly is another animal entirely.
History will rake the Republican Party over the coals for their treason and rightfully so. They willingly sold out their country to a foreign adversary because they were scared of the Black man and the White lady and of a country that was gradually browning before their eyes. Justin Amash himself has been silent on everything from Puerto Rico to kids in cages to shithole countries. But at least he is willing to put country ahead of party when he sees a president abusing the law. He now gone on record as being that first dancer on the hill. But we now look toward the Republican Party for that first follower. For that person who will step up, defy Cheeto Mussolini and the Koch brothers, and put country over party. Whoever that person is will at the very least slightly redeem themselves in the eyes of history. They will be able to sleep better at night. They will be able to have a clear conscious that they were a Republican that still believed in the rule of law. The time is now for a second Republican to join Justin Amash on the dance floor.
The world is waiting.
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