People want to stay vigilant | US & Canada
In these surreal times, it is appropriate for a comedian to tell Americans the truth about Donald Trump.
Stephen Colbert, the host of the Late Show, was dressed in black and wept as he talked about Trump’s most recent maddened fit, delivered from a lectern in the White House on November 5th.
Colbert told his audience that Trump “really tried to kill something tonight.” Indeed he had. Trump wore a fake, incandescent orange tan to disguise the register of his impending defeat and boomed on for 15 incoherent minutes, spat out his familiar litany of lies, fantasies and complaints.
That “something” that Trump was “trying hard to kill” was the idea that Americans can not only exercise their franchise freely, fairly, and peacefully, but also be able to exercise their judgment freely, fairly, and peacefully felling.
Then Colbert delivered the stick and turned his anger on Trump’s complicit enablers inside and outside the Republican Party.
“You just survived [until] Now, because many voters didn’t want to believe everything that was obvious to so many of us, Donald Trump is a fascist, ”Colbert said.
Indeed he is, Mr. Colbert.
I remember a time not so long ago when Colbert’s blunt, historically astute explanation would have been rejected by more reserved guys as irresponsible, ill-informed exaggeration. Trump was not a fascist, they insisted, but a plundering fool with authoritarian “tendencies”.
This time there were no lofty references, just silence, because Colbert was right and the more reserved guys were, as always, wrong.
But here’s the thing with fascists: fascists don’t joke; Fascists do not adhere to “norms”; Fascists do not respect the “rule of law”; Fascists don’t care about the damage, pain, and suffering they cause; and fascists do not admit.
The only cause they care about is power – regardless of the human cost or consequence.
The evidence is clear. Of course, with an indiscriminate virus raging across America, infecting millions and killing hundreds of thousands, Trump spent a lot of time and energy tweeting and watching people babble about him on TV. Much of this loss and suffering was avoidable. All of this loss and suffering is compounded by a president who lacks industry and empathy.
Still, I take fascists like Trump seriously. I do not reject his plans to hold onto power as the angry, fantastic thoughts of a human child, as so many others have. I will not fire Trump’s deputies in the media and in Congress if they insist he wants to keep his job as the vote was fraudulent. I will not fire Trump’s 72 million followers for shouting that a cabal has stripped their beloved leader of the presidency.
To do so would be to be blind to the insidious character and impulses of this fascist and his legion of loyalists.
And yet the usual gallery of Cocksure pundits and columnists has returned to their pleasant complacency.
They tell us to relax. They tell us to take a deep breath. Trump, they say, is literally on the proverbial path to nowhere. They tell us that Trump’s refusal to acknowledge “reality” is simply the final, irritable act of a “sore loser” leading a dying regime. Biden will be sworn in as president on January 20th.
Call me an alarmist, but I am not reassured.
I remember when Trump’s application for the presidency was dismissed as failed. I remember when Trump’s racism, bigotry, and misogyny were sure to expel him from the presidency. I remember being assured that the “system of checks and balances” would “hold back” this president. I remember being assured that Trump’s re-election prospects were so dire that he could step down. I remember being assured that Trump’s defeat would be so convincing that “Trumpism” would be removed from the political lexicon.
In an urgent context, I think it is advisable to check the documents against these once almost certain assurances. Trump has been named a Republican candidate for president. He was not disqualified. He became president. He wasn’t held back. He didn’t step back. And given the low profit margins in several volatile swing states, he almost won a second term.
The insistent suggestion that Trump do what he does in defeat just because he’s a narcissist and a crybaby is as blatant as it is stupid.
Trump may be a raging sucker, but he is a sinister and calculating charlatan who has proven throughout his life and during his hideous tenure as President that he will do and say anything to advance his parochial interests at the expense of the fading “national Interest ”. . Fascists do that.
Implausible as I may be, I take fascists seriously when they publicly suggest that they could try to end the certification of the electoral college results and convince state lawmakers to back Trump. I take fascists seriously if they mutate the so-called Ministry of Justice again into a reprisal arm of the state. I take fascists seriously when they populate their version of the “deep state” – especially in the Pentagon – with crouching sycophants who regard former President Barack Obama as the fifth column.
Until Donald Trump is evicted from the Oval Office – by force if necessary – I beg wise Americans not to make assumptions about what may or may not be inevitable in the coming days.
Instead, you need to remain vigilant and vigilant.
The views expressed in this article are from the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial stance of Al Jazeera.