Listening to Trump lie about the violence at his campaign rallies was too much for me.
Quoted in this Time piece:
“People come with tremendous passion and love for the country… and when they see what’s going on in this country, they have anger that is unbelievable,” Trump said. “They don’t like seeing bad trade deals, they don’t like seeing higher taxes, they don’t like seeing a loss of their jobs. We have some protesters who are bad dudes,” Trump continued. “They have done bad things. They are swinging, they are really dangerous, and they get in there and they start hitting people.”
Well, we've actually seen the events on video. The protesters are non-violent. Many are women. They aren't bad dudes and they aren't swinging at anyone. The only ones doing violence are Trump supporters. And they're getting more violent all the time. There's no mistaking what's going on. We know what comes next in this sequence of events, and what comes after that and after that and so on.
Janell Ross in the Washington Post says of Trump's story: "Language and logic used to justify cross-burnings, lynchings and all manner of illegal, extra-judicial and inhumane behavior in U.S. history. This is what has been said to support attempted genocides, ethnic expulsions and some of the most shameful political acts around the globe. This is the actual route by which bigotry has, in the course of human history, become accepted practice and policy. This is the way that entire groups have been terrorized, demonized and oppressed."
So why did the other candidates on stage not take the opportunity to say how wrong it is that Trump rallies are getting more violent, and that Trump is orchestrating it from the stage? The Occam's Razor answer is that they're scared. They figure anyone who can use violence as a way to build a case for order can find a way to silence his adversaries. Remember Trump talks openly about killing family members of our enemies, which is illegal. It's not illegal to threaten your political opponents, as Trump has done from his podium, in front of millions of people. Remember what he said about Paul Ryan.
People often make the mistake of thinking people couldn't possibly be as bad as they obviously are. Your spouse is staying out all night, and next time you see them they say they were hanging out with friends and it got late. He or she is cheating, although sometimes we don't get that in the moment.
All the numbers say Trump can't win in the fall, unless something terrible happens. Therefore something terrible is going to happen before the election. A problem that requires a strongman to take power to restore order.
This election will be about whether there are more elections.
What should be done? Start a citizen's PAC to collect money to run ads now, before Trump wraps up the Repub nomination, being very clear about what's happening, before it has a chance to get much bigger. Later, the ads won't work. It's almost too late now. Trump has to be very clearly positioned as anti-democracy. Let this be an election on whether we want to continue to have elections. It's way beyond Bernie's issue of campaign finance, which is kind of quaint and harkens back to a more innocent time when there was a basic acceptance of laws. Bernie is fighting an old battle. The new one is how to un-lose our minds, and prevent a very dark thing happening to the United States.