Donald Trump and his dogmatists last week advanced their battle in their crusade against reality and U.S. democracy, signaling the rest of the nation that it must treat the scourge as the menace it is.
Saturday, Trump appeared to a few hundred devotees at a Republican fundraiser in North Carolina, thrilling the room, and thousands tuned in on live computer feeds, with his relentless lies and disinformation about his winning the 2020 presidential election.
Trump lost the election by 7 million popular votes and 74 electoral votes. His alternative reality is a pernicious lie.
The menace here is that neither the event nor the rhetoric were new for the former president. In fact, it’s the nation’s weariness of the exploits of Trump and his advocates that make his political persistence so perilous.
For the most part, Trump delivered a classic Trump rambling, 90-minute lecture, repeating proven lies and distortions about non-existent voter fraud and unaccountable voting systems in the myriad Republican counties he lost to President Joe Biden.
The charade followed a week where his devotees in Congress fled to right-wing media outlets with baseless claims that Dr. Anthony Fauci was outed as a Chinese sympathizer in a Democrat-led scheme to hide the origin of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The nexus of this new mythology was Trump’s unproven claims — and what real scientists say is a highly unlikely scenario — that the pandemic virus was created and released by a laboratory in Wuhan, China. Trump and his comrades have capitalized on their fan’s mass delirium and the fact that scientists do not rule in nor out information based on political whims.
The origins of the pandemic virus has been the fodder of numerous theories and considerations since it was identified. The case is and has been open from the beginning. Fauci is simply the most recent lightning rod used by Trump and his devotees to incite the mass of cultists into yet another dangerous fury.
Unnerving, consistent, polls show that as many as two-thirds of the nation’s registered Republicans have been convinced by Trump’s grooming lies, distortions and gaslighting. Despite a parade of election officials who are members of their own political party, they choose to believe Trump’s fable, that he was indeed elected president.
For those who either pooh-pooh or dismiss current Republican politics, consider this. A recent PRRI poll reveals that one-in-four Republicans also believe in the Q-Anon myth, that the nation is secretly controlled by a cabal of Satan-worshiping child molesters.
It begs the question, what other falsehoods are Trump’s followers capable of believing, and acting on?
Last week, lawyers for Jan. 6 Capitol rioters said their clients were misled and incited by Trump and his obedient media backers into believing his rhetoric about a “stolen” election and the demise of the nation.
Clearly millions of his minions still believe Trump’s constant drumming about the pandemic being a hoax, refusing to get vaccinated and jeopardizing a remarkable opportunity to control a virus that has controlled the entire planet.
Lies perpetuated by Trump, and fortified by thousands of Republican lawmakers in Congress and state legislatures across the country, are eroding not only hard-won voter rights, but the reliability and integrity of U.S. elections, the very foundation of American democracy.
The strategy of wearing down or distracting the enemy to advance a battle is tried and true throughout history. Trump and his offensive, imbued in white supremacy, is counting on the fatigue from the rest of the nation.
It’s never been more important to push back against Camp Trump’s rhetoric. In Colorado and across the country, everyone must demand their elected representatives call out lawmakers who either look the other way, in hopes of avoiding Trump’s wrath, or those who willingly join forces with their liege to protect their own power, inviting the peril of everyone.