The more I think about it, the more it seems pretty obvious that what a growing number of people are seeing as a “Civil Cold War” is really more a president’s era is a reflection of his or her personality. Since Donald Trump is a nut job, we have crazy thing happening on a nearly daily basis.
Let me take a moment to note that apparently Shakespeare In The Park has been doing updated Julius Caesar productions with the president of the moment filling in for the traditional depiction of Caesar for something like a decade and only this time around was there a problem. That’s example of what I’m talking about. When the president and his followers think the world is out to get them, they warp the world around them.
So, let’s address the tragic events in Alexandria. It seems as though there is a lot of “fake news” floating about the event. We don’t know for sure if the shooter asked if the participants in the softball match were Democrats or Republicans yet. We just don’t know.
But that hasn’t stopped people from assuming the worst, from freaking out. Then they turn to the dumb thing Kathy Griffin did with the squatty potty or Shakespeare In The Park and say, “Look, look what those damn liberals did.” It makes you wonder where all that rage is coming from, what existential issue is causing people to hate liberals so much. What do they want, for everyone to be forced to watch Keith Urban videos until the End Times?
I guess I think maybe there are two things at work that are feeding off of each other. On one hand, you have long-term issues in the collective American psyche. People are on the Right have gone beyond the surreal in their rage against liberals and the center-Left. That rage is such that it leaves me scratching my head. Meanwhile, the personality of the Dear Leader, Donald Trump, only feeds into this horrible situation and takes American civil society to the breaking point.
The combination of those two things has resulted in the Cold Civil War we are now in. And, sad to say, this Cold Civil War will grind on for as long as Trump is president. The complete civil meltdown in the United States right now between Trumplandia and The Resistance will go on for as long as Trump is president. And given how insanely conservative Mike Pence is, this era could go on much longer, and have much more devastating consquences than any of us ever imagined.
There’s no easy answer. That combination of general trends in our nation’s political history combined with Trump’s personal quirks will haunt us for decades. These are intractable problems. So, the events in Alexandra are tragic and unfortunate and I regret that they happened. But they could be the tip of the ice burg. We could see a smattering of such events here and there for four or eight more years.
I have suggested before that one way to fix these problem would be through technology. Maybe if Silicon Valley took just enough time to stop funding AR and VR to look into fixing the problems associated with Twitter with a new startup that did just that, maybe we could mitigate some of the issues we’re experiencing now. I have gone into great detail about my vision for such a service using Instagram, but I will give you some general thoughts now because it’s relevant.
We need a service that helps give content providers the feeling that they have a vested interest in using the service. So, in that sense, I could see this as an opportunity to disrupt the newspaper business as well as ameliorate some of the titanic issues facing the American Republic right now. Meanwhile, you would make at the core of such a service threaded discussion based on full pages posts. This may sound just like Reddit, but the vision I have is more an update of the old Usenet form of online discussion than anything else.
I propose this because maybe if a social media start up assumed you would write more than just 140 characters, and you did so in the context of a threaded discussion, maybe, just maybe, things would be a little bit better than they are now. A man can hope, right?
But we really need to address the origin of this Cold Civil War we’re in. If we engage each other instead of throwing rhetorical shit at each other, then maybe we can rise above this horrible situation we’re in. But, alas, I fear not until Trumplandia is defeated politically will that happen. Trump is simply too powerful right now and that power grows every time there is something outrageous that happens that divides people. Trump was voted in because he promised change and he’s doing just that.
But not for the better. Not at all for the better.
Shelton Bumgarner is the Editor and Publisher of The Trumplandia Report. He can be reached at migukin (at) gmail.com.