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Donald Trump’s cult sequel

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Standing in the tiny North Carolina seaside store that I have visited since birth, I was shocked at the shelves overflowing with Trump paraphernalia. Selling everything from Make America Great Again flags to shot glasses, this tiny store had been transformed into President Trump’s shrine. While I’ve seen Trump products sported before, visiting this store made me realize how flashy the following Trumps have gotten. Never before have I seen supporters so infatuated with their leader that they were ready to pledge their support by spending their hard-earned money on gadgets.

The idolization of political figures is not new. Throughout the history of American politics, leaders like Washington, Lincoln, and Roosevelt have been admired as icons, even when far from perfect. The glorification of presidents fuels the myth of American exceptionalism, which exalts the brave men who have defended American democracy, setting an example for the rest of the world to follow. While former presidents have practiced so-called “personality cults, in which followers confuse a president’s charisma with his ability to lead a country, President Trump’s follow-ups have demonstrated what can happen. when blind faith goes too far. As the world watched a delusional faction of far-right Trump supporters storm the Capitol on January 6, it became clear that these rioters staged this insurgency to demonstrate their allegiance to President Trump.

President Trump’s sequel demonstrated what can happen when blind faith goes too far.

Prior to the 2016 election and during his four years in office, Trump successfully attacked Americans who felt disenfranchised by the political system. Using rhetoric such as draining the swamp and making America great again, Trump has signaled to his supporters, using media and social media, that they are part of something bigger. This revolution gave them something to believe.

The unwavering commitment to Trump as an individual leader, rather than as a member of the Republican Party, can be considered a cult. Cults are defined as any religion or sect considered extremist or false, which rests under the leadership of an authoritarian, often charismatic leader, revered by his followers. The riots in the capital turned out to be a case and the fact that following Trumps can be classified as cult. Under the guise of false information released by the president and his allies, his supporters stormed the Capitol in an attempt to overturn a free and fair election that Trump says was stolen from him.

It is important to look at the context of what led to what his supporters were lied to and forced to believe that democracy was in jeopardy. Since his defeat in the November election, Trump has waged a baseless campaign to try to overturn the results through failed legal battles. Knowing that he could make no progress in court, he encouraged and urged his supporters to come to Washington and lead a second American Revolution on the day Congress met in joint session to count the electoral votes and certify the winner. of the 2020 presidential race. An alarming aspect of the insurgency was how well organized and coordinated it was. Just days after the election was called, Stop the Steal groups began appearing on Facebook, racking up evidence of voter fraud and bad election practice that would give Trump a second term. Members of the group planned the insurgency, even discussing carpooling options so they could legally bring guns and weapons to the Capitol without being arrested on a flight. Anyone who opposed or even questioned information was immediately exiled from the group, setting a precedent that dissent will not be accepted. During the time it took Facebook to delete the group (approximately 48 hours), 320,000 people had joined and thousands of quirky groups were created. Trump managed to organize a feeling that by association his supporters had been wronged and defrauded. Individuals have been manipulated into believing they were patriots and protectors of democracy and created an army to protect Trump.

During his rally on the morning of January 6, Trump told his supporters: Walk down Pennsylvania Avenue Take back our country. However, his supporters weren’t just outside Capitol Hill: 14 senators opposed election results in key states, sparking lengthy debates over the integrity of the election. After inciting the insurgency with countless lies, calling the election fraudulent, Trump remained silent until later, tweeting a video telling the crowd to go home while praising them despite his oath to protect America.

Anyone who opposed or even questioned information was immediately exiled from the group, setting a precedent that dissent will not be accepted.

Much like the cult followers ‘undying commitment to their leader, Trumps’ supporters have demonstrated their willingness to risk their lives for him, take hostages, and risk legal repercussions. Despite the presence of longtime Trump allies who were challenging the election results as the Capitol was under attack, members of the insurgency have always put them at risk, showing their loyalty is only to their leader, Trump. Moreover, moments after Trump tweeted about Vice President Mike Pence, who has been a staunch ally of Trump, the crowd turned their threats against him. A rioter shouted Hang Mike Pence! and threatened his life while Pence hid with his family in an office near the Senate Chamber.

The events of January 6 exemplify the dangerous and devoted worship of Donald Trump, which he has organized over the past four years, culminating in a violent attack on Congress in which individuals risked their lives to give their leader four more years in power. Actions prevail as an absolute leader, and tactics such as fear rhetoric and information manipulation show the precariousness of placing eternal devotion and trust on a single politician.

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