Republicans’ ‘uplifting’ convention turned into a rage-fest – The Washington Post


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President Trump over the weekend said he expected a “very uplifting and positive” convention.Uh-oh. Dude must have gotten into the hydroxychloroquine again.“The woke-topians,” Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) warned, “will disarm you, empty the prisons, lock you in your home and invite MS-13 to live next door, and the police aren’t coming when you call.”Kimberly Guilfoyle, the former Fox News personality and current girlfriend of Donald Trump Jr., informed the convention that Democrats “want to destroy this country and everything that we have fought for and hold dear. They want to steal your liberty, your freedom. They want to control what you see and think and believe so that they can control how you live. They want to enslave you to the weak, dependent, liberal victim ideology, to the point that you will not recognize this country or yourself.”Midway through this rage-fest, the convention went to news footage of violence and destruction in the streets and bleeped-out obscenities — then cut to the wood-paneled interior of the mansion of Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the St. Louis couple who were charged with firearms violations after they threatened racial-justice demonstrators with a pistol and military-style weapon.The pair, personal injury lawyers both, spoke about the “out-of-control mob” and the “Marxist liberal activist” and “radicals” who menaced them by walking past their house — which “could just as easily happen to any of you who are watching from quiet neighborhoods around our country.”“They’re not satisfied with spreading the chaos and violence into our communities. They want to abolish the suburbs altogether,” the McCloskeys declared. “Make no mistake, no matter where you live, your family will not be safe in the radical Democrats’ America.”It was a veritable festival of fear — made all the more intriguing because it was delivered by the incumbent president’s party, much of it from an ornate hall near the White House, the Mellon Auditorium, named for a robber baron. Four years ago, Trump pledged to end “American carnage.” Now he’s asking for another four years to put an end to all the additional American carnage he created in his first four years. The difference is his leadership has turned the dystopian America Trump pictured into more of a reality.Officially, the convention tried for some positivity and uplift. It served up implausible testimonies about what a fabulous job Trump has done handling the pandemic. The Republican National Committee chairwoman, Ronna McDaniel, spoke with a straight face about Trump’s “reverence for the office of the presidency.” Ex-football great Herschel Walker said that the president is not a racist and described Trump, in a business suit, once joining him and their kids at Disney World’s “It’s a Small World” ride. Cancer survivor and Liberty University alumna Natalie Harp likened Trump to George Bailey in “It’s a Wonderful Life.”The party officially resolved to “adjourn without adopting a new platform.” Instead, the party made its convention into a virtual assembly of the cult of Trump. The president, after his afternoon appearance in Charlotte, appeared in two prime-time segments of the convention on Monday to receive praise from virus survivors, health workers and former hostages, and he is expected to speak Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights, too. His wife, four of his children, a daughter-in-law and various Trump pals are also in the lineup. The lead consultant to the convention produced “The Apprentice” for Trump and was a judge on Trump’s Miss Universe pageant. Big letters on the lectern Monday announced “TRUMP 2020.” Smaller letters said: “The RNC CONVENTION.”But the celebration of Trump was tedious — even Fox News cut away from live coverage — and the rage and dystopia invariably overtook the scripted calls for “hope.”Charlie Kirk, head of a conservative group who has partnered with Jerry Falwell Jr. at Liberty University, proclaimed that “the American way of life is being dismantled by a group of bitter, deceitful, vengeful activists.” He cast Trump as “the bodyguard of Western civilization.”Anti-union activist Rebecca Friedrichs declared that labor is “subverting our republic,” turned “schools into war zones” and wants to start “defunding police” and to “pick on loving teachers and little kids.”Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) determined that “Democrats won’t let you go to church.”Retiring Georgia state lawmaker Vernon Jones, a Black Democrat long critical of the party, said Democrats force African Americans to stay on “their mental plantation.”Former U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley warned of a “socialist left” bringing “anarchy.” A Cuban American, Maximo Alvarez, accused Democrats of siding with “anarchy and communism.” And Donald Trump Jr. warned of “Beijing Biden” (“the Loch Ness monster of the swamp”) encouraging tyranny, illegal immigrants, rioting, looting, vandalism, torch-bearing mobs and “radicals who want to drag us into the dark.”“Joe Biden and the radical left,” Trump Jr. reported, “want to bully us into submission.”And there are three more nights! How much uplift can one nation stand?Watch the latest Opinions video: How do conspiracy theories and racism move from the fringe to a political platform? The far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party has found the way. (Parjanya Christian Holtz/The Washington Post)Read more:
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