Letter from a Reader:

Trump Isn’t “Catering” to White Supremacists… He’s Leading Them

| revcom.us


A legitimately frightening feature of recent months is the increasingly frequent and belligerent actions of armed white supremacists and other fascists—storming state capitolsterrorizing a multiracial family on a camping trip, running down protesters with their cars or shooting them1 (often with the assistance or protection from cops and other law enforcement agents).

Trump defends and praises all this. When Nazis in Charlottesville attacked anti-racist protesters—killing one—in 2017, Trump said there were “very fine people on both sides.” When a fascist truck convoy invaded Portland this August, firing paint guns and pepper spray at Black Lives Matter demonstrators, Trump tweeted “GREAT PATRIOTS!” After a Trump-supporting gunman in Kenosha, Wisconsin, killed two protesters and seriously injured one—white people who were protesting racism and police murder against Black people—Trump lied that the shooter was being “very violently attacked” and acted in “self-defense.”

Yet too often we see headlines like this one from CNN: “Trump refuses to denounce violent actions by right-wing agitators.” Or statements like this from Joe Biden, saying that Trump “declined to rebuke violence…. He is too weak, too scared of the hatred he has stirred to put an end to it.” (All emphases added.) As if Trump is just a bystander who doesn’t know how or lacks the courage to stop the white-supremacist thugs. We are told that Trump is “catering to his base” and “fears offending potential voters.”

This is OBSCENE! First of all, Trump doesn’t criticize white supremacists because he IS one of them—a genocidal racist, with an almost 50-year track record to prove it.

But more fundamentally, Trump doesn’t criticize them because he is LEADING them—they are a key component of his drive for a fully fascist society.2

When Trump wanted to “Open Up” the country in spite of the deadly COVID epidemic, he tweeted “LIBERATE MICHIGAN”—soon protests spearheaded by heavily armed men were organized at state capitols around the country, stampeding most states to abandon public health measures like mask mandates and business closings. This led to tens of thousands of unnecessary COVID deaths.

When millions across the country protested the police murder of George Floyd, Trump whipped up hysteria about “violence in the streets,” “burning cities” and “antifa invasions.” Before long, fascist militia were showing up en masse to threaten, attack and sometimes kill protesters, in cities and rural areas.

And with the election approaching, Trump is calling on “his people” to prevent “voter fraud”—a fascist euphemism for intimidating Black, Latino and Native American people from voting. Trump wants his armed Brownshirts in the streets to suppress the vote, and if that doesn’t “win” him the election, these thugs will be “pre-positioned” (together with cops and federal law enforcement) to forcibly keep Trump in power anyway.

As things intensify in the coming period, we should expect that Trump will increasingly need to rely on these fascist militia. It is imperative that this be countered with determined, nonviolent mass protest, growing from week to week, refusing to leave the streets until this fascist regime is driven from power.


1. There have been “500 instances of right-wing extremists gathering in response to Black Lives Matter protests since the police killing of George Floyd in late May, leading to 64 cases of simple assault, 38 vehicle assaults, and nine cases of shots fired at demonstrators resulting in three deaths.”  [back]

2. Heidi Beirich, an expert in “anti-government” hate groups, said that “Trump has changed that calculation—the militias, the larger anti-government world, is essentially a pro-Trump political formation.” [Emphasis added.]  [back]

Armed militia occupying the Michigan State Capitol demanding an end to “stay at home” orders intended to slow the spread of COVID-19.



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