I love this idea. From The Dallas Morning News editorial page:
3 days ago
As a licensed professional counselor in Texas, I have come to the conclusion that America has an anger management problem when it comes to dealing with hate groups. We resort to finger-pointing, more violence and outrage. I have a solution to this dilemma that is called Operation Paradox.
What is Operation Paradox? First, put the hate groups in a position that sets up a discrepancy, a paradox. Ask businesses, individuals or peaceful organizations to donate money for every minute that the hate group publicly demonstrates.
A variation of Operation Paradox exists in Wunsiedel, Germany, the location of the former grave of Rudolf Hess, which attracts neo-Nazis each year for a march through town commemorating Adolf Hitler’s deputy. Townspeople came up with a humorous counterprotest that pokes fun at Nazis. Instead of generating hate, residents and businesses pledge money for every meter the neo-Nazis walk. The donations go to Exit Deutschland, a nongovernmental organization that helps neo-Nazis put aside their hate.
Here in the U.S., let’s say, the Ku Klux Klan demonstrates publicly for 120 minutes in a public park. Ten businesses pledge to donate $5 for each minute the demonstration takes place. The hate demonstration thus generates $6,000.
The money goes to groups such as the United Negro College Fund in the name of the Ku Klux Klan. Make sure to let the hate groups know the plan so they understand they are now working against their own racist agenda.
Just imagine how the KKK members will feel when they discover that instead of trying to shut down the demonstration, we are encouraging it to go on and on, to fund something that the hate group does not support. They are faced with a dilemma.
If they demonstrate publicly, they will fund an agenda that turns their stomach (for example, the United Negro College Fund, the Southern Poverty Law Center or the Anti-Defamation League). If they don’t demonstrate, their message of hate is contained. No constitutional rights to demonstrate have been denied. The lesser of two evils is their only choice left.
The paradoxical intervention has taken place. The hateful energy is reversed or neutralized.
Operation Paradox takes the fun out of being hateful and racist and picking on law-abiding people from diverse backgrounds. It also cools the jets of counterprotesters who had no other alternatives to solving a dangerous and combative situation, thus making for a more peaceful community.
The organization, communication and planning necessary for this approach to be meaningful provides reasons for whole communities to work together for the greater good. Individual feelings of helplessness are gone.
The belief that the government has to fix everything begins to change. Citizens, police, politicians, businesses and charitable organizations take responsibility and are empowered. Anarchy is replaced with peace and integrity, in turn making America, as a whole, great again.
Scott Smith is a counselor in Flower Mound. He wrote this column for The Dallas Morning News. Email: email@example.com