Seems like violence springs up at rallies for GOP nominee Donald J. Trump with ever-increasing frequency as we hurtle toward July’s nominating conventions. The media has taken to linking these aggressive protesters to the Bernie Sanders campaign, thus bruising the reputation of the candidate himself and encouraging him to “condemn the violence.”
The same thing happened in Nevada at their state convention, where violence was widely reported but later retracted. One man picked up a chair before sitting it back down, another spraypainted something on a building the next day, and suddenly Sanders supporters are the most unruly bunch of degenerates the country has seen since 1968.
Of course, much like Senator Barbara Boxer and others antagonized anyone opposed to Clinton, worked to bend or break the rules, and otherwise carried themselves like the superior power that was getting annoyed with all these peasants thinking they should have a seat at the table, nobody seems to be addressing the real origin of animosity and escalation at Trump rallies.
Society is changing. Like it or not, Occupy got us lit up about wealth inequality. The Fight for $15 has been successful in raising the minimum wage in several cities. Police accountability is slowly on the rise thanks to the efforts of Black Lives Matter. We’ve remembered something very important about our national history: Protest works. Protest is back because we’ve been beaten down too long and we’ve exhausted all the state-approved options of making change. We’re gerrymandered to hell and our options are shit. The one method left to get our message out is disruption.
Some folks really don’t like disruption. They want to Make America Great Again. They want to return to the 1950s, a magical time when gays were in the closet and blacks had their own drinking fountains and women knew their place was in the kitchen. All these gays, blacks, women, Latinos, Muslims, and various other minorities, along with their allies, are really mucking up those plans by turning the camera on the Trump supporters, exposing them for what they are.
When your demagogue tells you he’ll pay your legal bills and laments the days that you could punch someone in the face for protesting, you get a little amped. When you’re headed out of the venue and see some minority expressing opposition to your traditional views, you’re ready to defend yourself, but then you open your mouth and a string of racism flows out. You just spent an hour being conditioned for this. All you can do at this point is escalate.
The masses heading back to their pickup trucks at Trump rallies are primed for confrontation. They’ve just had all their worst biases reinforced and they’re ready to go out and fix all that progress that has ruined their once-white… sorry, once-great country. We’re absolutely right to protest this mindset anywhere and everywhere we encounter it. But how is this logically going to turn out? Heated words, aggressive stances, perhaps even a little pushing and shoving…
— Mike Huguenor (@mikehuguenor) June 3, 2016
Then the mob mentality begins and someone feels backed into a corner. They strike out to defend themselves. It quickly degenerates and others join the fracas. The media runs over with their cameras in time to see a protester throwing a punch. They find a Bernie shirt and zoom in for a second. They’re just looking for the narrative, but they’re not thinking about it for long enough to reach an intelligent conclusion.
Everyone goes home and lives their lives. Maybe a couple of assault charges and bruises, but life goes on for thousands of people in city after city. The media points to this group of Mexicans, that group of black people, the other group of Muslims, and they can’t seem to find a common thread except there seem to be a lot of Sanders shirts in the crowd, so that’s the narrative, and Sanders is again called on to denounce the violence he has denounced several times.
Then he points out that every single one of these problems happens at a Trump rally, not a Sanders rally, and he wonders aloud why nobody seems to realize that Trump’s candidacy and his rhetoric are the real root of this, especially when they just finished covering the event. By then, though, the cameras are off and nobody’s listening, because Trump has said something about a taco salad or a Hispanic judge or some such thing and it needs to be promoted… sorry, reported.
As long as the media creates a narrative without depth or integrity, they’re part of the problem. Donald Trump has brought out the worst in this country, put it on a pedestal, and made it feel rejuvenated and legitimate and that should concern the media, but they’ve discovered how to cover Trump in such a way that it generates ratings. Integrity doesn’t sell spots. Exposing the truth isn’t as compelling as building this new narrative about Making America Great Again. Without the media unethically amplifying this message to boost their own ratings, this campaign wouldn’t exist. This is their creation. They did this.
You thought it was Trump’s fault? There have been hundreds of bigoted idiots who’ve ran for president over the years. That’s nothing new. What’s new is this 24/7 coverage of anything he says, like he’s a Kardashian that just bought new yoga pants, without any sort of depth or criticism. Single-handedly, the American media has created the perfect candidate for their ratings, and they have done it intentionally, consequences be damned.
When will it be time to hold them accountable for their actions? When will we shift our attention to the root of this Trump problem? When will we disrupt the media?