Donald Trump is now Murdering his own Supporters
It was horrifying to learn of the full extent of barbaric malfeasance and intentional ineptitude at the border where children were possibly permanently separated from their parents and women were sterilized against their will. It was a revelation of obscenity when Donald said that he did not consider COVID-19 a true disaster because most of the deaths were occurring in “blue states.” All these actions served to reveal the Trump administration as feckless and autocratic.
But this week the ineptitude reached a whole new level. Normally dictators only kill those who do not support them. So whilst Trump’s deadly idiocy has resulted in hundreds of thousands of unnecessary deaths and more than a little suffering, it was somewhat predictable. Dogs bite, wasps sting, dictators kill. But now, Trump is targeting his own supporters and seemingly trying to kill them.
The night of October 27th Trump held one of his silly little rallies in Omaha, Nebraska in an airfield. Besides the normal horrendousness however the Trump campaign failed to provide busses to transport the attendees away from the event in a timely fashion. This resulted in crowds of Trump supporters, many of them elderly, standing out in parking lots in 30F or -1C weather.
A few days later in Tampa the Trump campaign apparently decided to do a reprise. In Tampa at the time the temperature was only about 80F but the humidity was above 70% and rally goers started passing out from heatstroke. Per usual, the campaign did not have enough bottled water or any apparent plan to deal with medical situations which can arise from having any group of unhealthy people standing about for hours on end whilst a demented heart patient raves at them about socialism. But enough about Bernie Sanders. (Sorry, after him trying to undermine the Democratic Party a few days before a major election YET AGAIN, I just couldn’t resist.)
Anyways, I’ve largely been of the opinion that political rallies are not a great way to go since about the Nuremburg rallies. Explain to me the point. I mean, don’t because I won’t actually read it, but particularly in a democratic-republican system like we supposedly have in the US a political rally is pretty pointless. Basically at a rally — and I’m including all rallies here: this is a thing you can actually both sides — the candidate/dictator gets up there and speaks excitedly about things that will get the audience pumped. In some cases it’s about things like universal healthcare and equal rights, in some cases it’s about universal healthcare but only for white men, and in some cases it’s about carting off the “other,” to literal concentration camps. But regardless of what the rally is about or who’s speaking they can only make good on the promises they make at such rallies if they either have a complete democratic majority in all branches of government or are a dictator. And given that rallies are only for people who already support you they’re not terribly useful for extending your coalition.
This is not to say that if I became a politician I would never appear at a rally — I probably would because it’s now part of our political landscape — but I do think it’s a ridiculous and somewhat sinister tradition.
But you may have noted that the temperatures at the Omaha and Tampa rallies weren’t really that extreme. I’m out in 30F temperatures all the time. Occasionally, I’m out in such temperatures without a coat. Likewise, I’ve worked doing what constitutes heavy labour for hours on end in temperatures well above 80F with extreme humidity (I’ve worked on digs and as a ranch hand.) I imagine so have you. These temperatures in and of themselves are not problematic. What is an issue is if you don’t warn people. If I’m going out in 30F weather without a coat I’m running and already have prepped my body for it. If I’m working in high temperatures I’m wearing appropriate clothing, I have a hat and a kerchief and I’m porting my own water or sports drink. If you were to just plop me out in Omaha for a few hours without any warning, as relatively healthy as I am, I too would be in trouble.
This is the part that just gets me. Normally when you plan an event, particularly a big event you want to plan for what could go wrong and make sure you’re taking care of your attendees. You ask questions like, “what happens if someone is diabetic and has a low sugar episode? What happens if a pregnant woman attends and needs to sit? What do we do if there’s a security threat and we need to move people out swiftly?” These are just normal parts of event planning because it’s humanitarian and because you don’t want everyone from obscure bloggers to major news outlets running stories about you inadvertently killing old folks.
And also you can in some circumstances be sued. For a lot.
Just after the Omaha incident, a satirical tweet was circulated suggesting that the reason for all this was that bus companies hadn’t been paid for previous work by the campaign and so refused to show up. While the actual reason was just traffic and poor planning, the satire stuck just because of how on brand it would be for the Trump campaign to do something so greedy and stupid that it landed their own supporters in the hospital.
After all, the US death toll from COVID now stands at 231,000 largely due to Trump’s own personal failure.
I don’t believe in jailing or killing people over their political beliefs even if I consider their political ideology dehumanizing and morally suspect. I find it frustrating talking to people who think my value rests on the status of my uterus, but while I don’t doubt they would like to see me dead I’m just going to continue being the bigger person. It is however, a bit ironic to see these same people targeted by the very despot they will likely cast a vote for.
Mustering up the empathy to care for the physical suffering of people who would impose death on anyone who disagrees has become increasingly difficult of late. It’s a good thing the universe seems to be handling karma for us all.