In a recent letter to the editor, Gregory Bontrager, of Hutchinson, gave us another of his conservative worldview opinions. He said, “My concern is will we recover our civil liberties from heavy-handed predominantly leftist governors who have used this overreaction to abuse our constitutional liberties… The groundwork to tyranny is being laid like it always is, in the name of the people.”

I do agree with Bontrager that the groundwork to tyranny has been laid. However, Bontrager shows a lack of historical knowledge and a misguided concern for the future of our Constitutional Democratic Republic. In Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt’s book “How Democracies Die,” they say “Trump, a serial norm breaker, is widely (and correctly) criticized for assaulting America’s democratic norms. But the problem did not begin with Trump… When [Newt] Gingrich arrived in Washington in 1979, his vision of politics as warfare was at odds with that of the Republican leadership. ... Backed by a small but growing group of loyalists, Gingrich launched an insurgency aimed at instilling a more combative approach to the party.”

This, contrary to Bontrager’s opinion, was the groundwork for America’s movement towards an tyrannical, authoritarian plutocracy led by President Trump.

Donald Daniels, Topeka