“This American carnage stops right here and stops right now.”
Donald J. Trump, January 20, 2017
Carnage? Was he talking about the epidemic of mass murders committed by a variety of crazy and not-so-crazy gunmen and the even worse epidemic of daily gun deaths that had claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands of American–young and old, black and white.
Not really. He was talking about a different carnage that most of us weren’t aware of. Speaking to the largest crowd ever gathered for a Presidential Inauguration (just kidding), newly-sworn President Donald Trump revealed that poverty, crime, drugs and rusted-out factories were evidence of “carnage” in our country, especially, of course, our cities. Especially cities, it later turned out, with lots of black people and governed by “corrupt” Democratic administrations in blue states.
Not to worry. Like a lot other problems, he was going to fix it. He was going to fix it the way he’s “fixed” a bunch of other problems–by declaring that he was going to fix it. In the same speech, he described America’s decaying infrastructure. By implication, he was going to fix that as well. He was a “builder” after all. That’s how he–supposedly–became a billionaire.
Other than the “beautiful wall” that is his obsession, nothing has been done to fix our infrastructure. It’s not even a topic of discussion.
Now. following a weekend of horror, Trump appeared before television cameras to deliver one of his patented, wooden Teleprompter speeches to condemn video games, mental illness, the absence of the death penalty, hate, violence in the mass media and oh, white supremacy.
One thing that doesn’t seem to be much of a problem, we can infer from what was barely mentioned in his speech, are guns and the ease with which Americans can buy them. Remember the Cabinet Room meeting he held with Congressional leaders where he said he wasn’t afraid to take on the NRA? He would take the heat, he said. That went pretty well.
Let’s see how long it takes for him to get over his grief and return to his racist, xenophobic tropes against minorities and immigrants.
There’s not much point in belaboring the issue. If he hasn’t aided and abetted the growth of white supremacy incidents, and there’s ample evidence to support that contention, he has done little–make that nothing–to stem it. One lame Teleprompter speech under duress following three mass murders in less than 10 days hardly compensates for the innumerable times in the past two and a half years that he’s had one of his patented “rallies” where he incites the audience with his racist, xenophobic themes.
Like Captain Renault in “Casablanca,” Trump is now shocked, shocked to find that there are white supremacists on the Internet, and elsewhere. Some of them may even follow him on Twitter.