Past Tense, Future Tenser
The day finally arrived, the day that Revolted Colonies was no longer past tense or future conditional. It’s all right out there in the open. The column has been quiet over this long, horrible weekend of the Charlottesville demonstration, riot and murder. So many people weighed in and so many people had meaningful things to say. Not a time for levity, so no new posts. Until today.
The future ex-President stalked his golf club away from home all weekend, equivocating on his position about the debacle. Initially, he blamed “many sides,” although he did name check Neo-Nazis and the Ku Klux Klan, part of the larger White Supremacist cohort. As the weekend wore on, he backed away from his “equal blame” position, faulting the protesters who started the demonstration. On Tuesday, during a press conference at Trump Tower on the subject of infrastructure, he was Donald Unleashed. Livid with rage, he walked back his walk-back. Asked why he waited so long to speak out about Charlottesville, he delivered a seemingly impromptu restatement of the events through his unique filter. A transcript of the complete conference has been published in many places, including the dreaded New York Times.
If the words were impromptu, the thought behind them was the product of his upbringing. He may not be the Ku Klux Klan member his father Fred was and he may not be a card-carrying member of any White Supremacist organization, but he courted their support and found a narrow path to the White House against an unpopular opponent. Now he articulates Alt-Reich views from the Rose Garden.
Trump is succeeding where Charles Manson failed: he’s inciting a race war. That’s scary enough, but even worse is the fact that while the media are pouncing on every outrageous statement he makes, his team is at work, lining up new voter suppression tactics and defunding the census. The Republican party is determined to hold on to power even though its tactics repudiate the concept of one person-one vote and the right of equality under the law.