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Trump's Violent Delights Have Violent Ends, Brunswick Beacon

In 2018, a Trump supporter mailed 16 bombs to Democrats, including Barack Obama, Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton. This last August, a Trump supporter died in a shootout after attacking an FBI office. Another Trump supporter broke into Nancy Pelosi’s house recently at 2 a.m., nearly murdering Paul Pelosi with a hammer. Screaming “Where’s Nancy,” he echoed cries of insurrectionists who trashed the Speaker’s office on Jan.6.

Trump’s insurrection failed, but his grip on Republicans tightened. When Trump shared a call for civil war, Republicans shrugged. An Economist/YouGov poll found 53% of Trump voters expect civil war within 10 years. A Washington Post poll found 40% of Republicans support violence against the government.

Trump came to Wilmington on Sept. 23 and accused Speaker Pelosi of “destroying our country” and bringing it “to the brink of ruin.” He dehumanized Democrats as “deranged, depraved, disgusting, menacing, vicious, sick, sinister, evil people.” Trump said, “This nation does not belong to them; it belongs to you.” He urged the crowd to fight, or “we’re not going to have a country left,” and praised their North Carolina ancestors as people who “took orders from nobody.” The MAGA-Republican crowd was delighted.

Studies show counties that hosted a 2016 Trump rally reported a 226% increase in hate crimes over comparable counties that didn’t. NBC reports threats against members of Congress increased 10-fold since 2016, when Trump first ran for president.

Political violence has struck both parties, but only Republicans embraced the violent insurrection as “legitimate political discourse.” Only Republicans like Ted Budd said, “It was nothing. It was just patriots standing up.” After the Pelosi attack, Republicans joked and Trump spread false conspiracy theories already debunked by the assailant’s confession and actual video of the break-in.

In a democracy, the will of the people is determined with ballots, not bullets. What Trump offers is not democracy…it’s lies, divisiveness, and violence.

Joanne Levitan



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