Hillary Derangement Syndrome much? We have seen a major party political convention turn into a lynch mob. It didn’t take much, given the years of disinformation and invented scandals served up by Fox News. It is little wonder that the theme of the 2016 Republican convention seems to be “Hillary for Prison 2016.”
As the Chicago Tribune‘s Rex Huppke observed, “‘Hillary for prison’ an unprecedented convention cry.”
It was a world of the bizarre into which we were all invited. It was not entirely a surprise to see Bridgegate Chris Christie hold a mock trial of Hillary Clinton to cries of “lock her up,” but we even had Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, one of Trump’s policy adviser and a guy who was on the reality star’s VP shortlist, chanted along with the crowd, “Lock her up! Lock her up!”
See for yourself, from Politico:
— POLITICO (@politico) July 19, 2016
This is not the mature behavior we expect from a general, leading a rabble, sinking to their level. Where is the dignitas? For a Roman, dignitas meant deserving of respect, and Flynn just flushed his down the sewer. Probably, Julius Caesar did better when leading his boys against Pompey.
But Flynn isn’t much of a Republican man. Apparently, he is as afraid of Hillary Clinton as he is of Muslims. Maybe Lindsey Graham can find some room for him under his bed to hide until this is all over.
The real sin here is not appealing to a mob, however. Think about what is being said here:
Never watched a convention premised on throwing the other candidate in prison before outside of former Soviet Union.
— Michael Weiss (@michaeldweiss) July 19, 2016
We get that Donald Trump loves former KGB guy Vladimir Putin, but come on. This isn’t America that’s being chanted for in Cleveland. Not the America any of us know or grew up in.
If they’re not generating it, fear is driving them. This is derangement taken to new levels.
Let’s be honest: you shouldn’t expect much mental acuity from a place that sells anti-Hillary pins saying “KFC Hillary Special: 2 fat thighs 2 small breasts…left wing,” and “Life’s a bitch/Don’t vote for one.”
So signs like “Trump vs. Tramp” are hardly a surprise. Never mind that Trump is the one who acts like a Tramp. Fruits of rational thought these are not.
We were fairly warned by Republican Michael Folks and his “Hillary Clinton, you should be tried for treason, murder, and crimes against the US Constitution… then hung on the Mall in Washington, DC.” It wasn’t as if the convention crowd, the lowest common denominator in all the land, wasn’t going to take its cue from that.
Even the mainstream media, always more than willing to cut Donald Trump some slack, was offended by the display. As MSNBC’s Steve Schmidt said, “We don’t lock up our political opponents. The rule of law matters.”
Schmidt rightly called Chris Christie’s mock trial of Hillary Clinton “a little banana republican” and said, “The rule of law matters, and it matters to Republicans, and Republicans emphasize the importance of the rule of law.”
When confronted, Christie said it was just some harmless “fun,” you know, publicly trying your political opponents in absentia and calling for their imprisonment.
Well, they always said they respected the rule of law, but they also said Donald Trump isn’t a racist. And they just nominated him for president.
During Obama’s presidency, we have gone from the Republican idea that liberalism is an illegitimate political ideology to the banana republican idea that political opponents should not be merely denigrated, but arrested.
Unprecedented? Hell yes. That isn’t how American democracy works.
But then, we are talking about Donald Trump here, and oligarchy. And political strongmen do arrest their opponents. Trump doesn’t just love Putin. He wants to be Putin.
It is dangerous. And it is un-American. As the saying goes, actions speak louder than words, and the Republican mob just spoke very loudly indeed.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.