I suppose it was inevitable that the new, ultra-conservative North Carolina Supreme Court elected back in November would use its limited time to erase the progress made by its predecessor.

On Friday, the court reversed a previous decision about voter ID, which had been swatted down by a federal appeals court in July 2016, which decreed the law was passed with “discriminatory intent,” as it needlessly and disproportionately affected Black and Brown voters. Prepare for another round through the courts on this one.

Our state Supreme Court also reversed a decision about gerrymandering, giving all power back to the NC General Assembly, which at present is controlled by Republicans, to cut districts, Congressional and otherwise. Under the current Congressional maps, drawn after years of court cases decrying the old ones as illegal, NC’s 14 seats went to seven Democrats and seven Republicans, which is fair for a purple state like ours. The new ones should break down to at least 10 seats for the GOP, and we’ll be looking for a newly-cut safe R district for Rep. Tricia Cotham, who switched parties earlier this year to the dismay of her deep-blue constituency.

And just for good measure, they revoked a law allowing convicted felons to vote after they made their amends, affecting some 55,000 North Carolinians.

With these measures, the folks on the right are admitting that they cannot win a majority in a free and fair election. This, of course, goes against the very nature of our representative democracy — on paper, anyway — and also is a little bit like theft, stealing votes from people who don’t have the power to fight back, neutering voices of dissent, completely disregarding those of us who maybe don’t want to live in a gun-toting theocracy.

Their vision is one of minority rule — the unpopular few governing against the wishes of the electorate — which is in itself a form of fascism. No need to sound the warning bells anymore; we are already there.

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