Now, let me be clear about all of this. Trump and Magaism are completely devoid of any ideology beyond an absolute need to “win the moment” by “owning the libs.” They will say anything during the course of an argument to win the moment. Magaists are so beholden to their Fuhrer that it doesn’t matter of what they say is contradictory or strategically makes no sense, as long as they win the moment they’re happy.
Also, just like Hitler, Trump has a personal control over the deplorables to such an extent that the only thing that prevents him from going full dictator and getting his own version of Hitler’s Enabling Acts is our still robust media and an natural disinclination to obey the president absolutely by roughly 60% of the population.
Because they’re no ideology, Trump can — for political expediency — seemingly be an absolute supporter of Israel while at the same fucking time saying there are good people “on both sides” of whole Nazi versus everyone else debate. It can leave one scratching their heads to make sense of it all, to say the least.
To me, however, that’s really all just white noise. To any objective observer, Trump has all the makings of a white nationalist to such an extent that he’s an American Nazi in all but name. It may take him a few more years, but he’s going to either get the handle on how to use the levers of power or he’s going to be given the “gift” of an enormous crisis not — for once — of his own making. He’ll get his Reichstag Fire and when he does, he’ll go full Nazi on us with a particularly American, Maga twist to it.
So, it may not literally be the Nazism of yore finally come to America, but some thoroughly unexpected things. Things will happen between now and whenever Trump happens to agree to leave office — which seems up to debate at this point — that are going to shock us. There will be concentration camps and a growing number of people are going to be throw into them and the question at some point will be if there is going to be a Final Solution or not. I know that sounds rather nightmarish and hysterical at this point, but if we as Americans don’t take a stand now, Trump or his successor is going to finally break the Constitutional system beyond repair.
The thing that really frightens me is the idea that it isn’t even Trump that we have to worry about. It could be someone younger and more ideologically centered that we’re going to have to really worry about. Trump is just laying the groundwork for someone who actually, like, knows what the fuck he’s doing.
Thus, in a sense, Trump could be just the bile, the primordial ooze from whence a political creature that is significantly closer to an actual American Hitler than Trump. If that isn’t enough to give you the heebeejeebees I don’t know what will. I don’t know who it will be, but the it would be someone with the ideology of James Woods combined with Trump’s weird populist charisma. Someone who could actually get enough people to agree with him that he could finally bend the Constitution to the point that is breaks.
I’m not saying that Trump won’t try, to, say, amend the Constitution through a Constitutional Convention or simply ignore elections, but someone younger and more with-it might have a better chance of being successful. So, really, it seems the only thing standing between the United States and actual, real-life fascism is Trump’s age, lack of an ideology and general incompetence.
The American Constitutional system is weak and getting weaker. The systemic weakness of the Legislative Branch, combined with the cramming of the Judiciary with young, loonie MAGA judges means by the time Trump’s eight years is up, he could very well feel emboldened to simply ignore large swaths of the Constitution altogether.
I have no hope that there will be a Blue Wave. The economy is doing too well, there’s too much dark money, Trump’s too powerful and the Russians will hack the vote again. So, we’re in for a long haul of troubling events. This is the darkest timeline. There’s honestly no hope at this moment that anything is going to get us out of this situation anytime soon.
Once I thought maybe if this was World War II, we were in, say, 1942 and as we eased in to 1943, maybe there would be some hope. But now I’m thinking we’re more like Eastern Europe after WWII. Hope was slowly extinguished and ultimately died. It took about two generations for hope to come back and it came back in a wholly unexpected way. I have a feeling I’ll be an elderly man in a nursing home — or on the streets — before some ensemble of the America I knew as a child will return.
Make America great again, indeed.
Shelton Bumgarner is a writer and photographer living in Richmond, Va. He may be reached at migukin (at) gamil (dot) com.