In grappling to understand the age of Trumpism, I realize that President Donald is a symptom of our era. His actions as the person in a highest position, heighten our conflicts in every arena possible. Republican and Democrat, the rich and the poor (or the haves and have-nots), the whites and the blacks, men and women, pro-lifers and women’s rightists, the heterosexual from the homosexual and transgender people, environmentalists and contaminators, law abiders and law breakers, religion against religion, warmongers vs. peaceniks, those in favor of immigration and those opposed, the conservative vs. the liberal media. Proposing the abolition of gun control endorses violence as the solution. With Trump’s lack of interest and talent for dialogue, and distaste for negotiation, peace seems ever more elusive and violence looms on the horizon, ever more imminent and frightening.
Trump frames the “problem” as stemming from outside ourselves and our country. We are the “good” ones. Essentially, he means himself and the rich ones on his “team” and in his cabinet. While he inspires terrorism, he defines the “evil” ones as the terrorists. (His attempts to blame Muslims have fortunately failed so far.)
In striking and heating up the already-hot irons of these conflicts, he captures supporters from each group. In essence, wherever the possibility of contention arises, his actions fan the flame and fuel the fire. (Please excuse my use of clichés, but I find myself saying, what the heck? Look at Trump’s use of clichés and superlatives (great, fantastic) which vary little from day to day.) In essence, what kind of example does he set? We are plummeting fast into the dump, myself included, in justifying the use of clichés.
The result: we are left in a limbo where reality is denied and violence justified. Montana GOP House candidate Greg Gianforte assaulted the journalist Ben Jacobs, for attempting to ask the candidate about the Republican Health Care bill. According to a report in The New York Times, there was disagreement of opinion about whether body slamming is acceptable behavior! (Indeed, as we passengers on the NYC buses hear over the loud speaker every day, physically assaulting the bus driver is a felony, and it should be noted that assaulting your fellow passengers is also an offense). After Gianforte’s body-slamming episode, Trump issued another message in support of the GOP candidate (who subsequently won the election).
Conclusion: We best recognize Trump’s tactics to split us apart in every and any possible arena. His underlying motives serve to empower him, to further his brand and line his own pockets. Supposedly, a divided house will not stand. His attempts to thrust one group against another and divide the American people hopefully will fail, but not soon enough.