From the very first day of Donald Trump’s campaign for president he’s used tactics and language that is patently offensive and divisive. The central theme of his “movement” is expressed in his slogan “Make America great again.” There is an explicit suggestion in it that America isn’t currently great. Trump’s solution is to build walls and separate Americans from one another on the basis of race and religion.
At a rally yesterday in Iowa Trump displayed the ultimate result (final solution?) of a political message that drives people apart. In a portion of his stump speech he sought to brag about the support he gets from evangelical Christians. It’s a curious base of followers considering his transparently phony adoption of faith for political gain. Nevertheless, they have flocked to him in surprising numbers. In recognition of that, Trump called on his conservative Christian disciples to identify themselves by raising their hands. But then he went a horrifying step further:
“Raise your hand if you’re NOT a Christian conservative. I want to see this, right? Oh there’s a couple people. That’s all right. I think we’ll keep them, right? Should we keep them in the room? Yes, I think so.”
Well, isn’t that generous of him? They can stay in the room. But maybe they should be required to wear yellow badges and have their passports stamped with red letters. Making non-Christians identify themselves in a public setting after praising the faithful is disconcerting at best and overtly threatening at worst. Who exactly was he speaking to? The Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, Atheists, Muslims, etc.? He has already proposed prohibiting Muslims from entering the country, and now all non-Christians may be ejected from his rallies. Unless he decides that he needs their votes to ascend to power. Even as a joke (which will probably be his excuse) this is nauseating.
More likely he is speaking to the white, Christian supremacists of the alt-right movement that has embraced his candidacy. The CEO of his campaign, Stephen Bannon, is also the chief executive of Breitbart News, the leading alt-right website. And you can rest assured that those audiences hear Trump’s message loud and clear.
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.
The bald-faced bigotry of Trump’s remarks yesterday is consistent with the familiar prejudices that have permeated his campaign. It’s impossible to separate the rabid devotion of racists like David Duke from the Trump movement. His supporters ought to be asking themselves how they can vote for someone who has such a strong appeal among such despicable hate mongers. And if they can still justify putting someone like Trump in the White House, they are proving that Hillary Clinton was right. They are deplorable.