Wednesday, August 29, 2018
What If Donald Trump Actually Shot Someone on Fifth Avenue?
It was his most infamous remark, the one that should have instantly disqualified Donald Trump from running for President.
The one where he claimed that he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose any supporters.
But somehow Trump was elected instead of arrested, or confined to a mental institution.
And now Thomas Friedman has this disturbing question.
What if Trump did actually shoot someone on Fifth Avenue?
President Trump stopped his motorcade in Manhattan today, jumped out of his limousine and shot a man on Fifth Avenue who was shouting anti-Trump epithets. The shooting was recorded by the White House press pool as well as by dozens of bystanders with cellphones and by security cameras in the area. When asked for his reaction, House Speaker Paul Ryan said, “We will need more information than is available at this point.”
Friedman has some fun with that notion.
White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters that she was looking the other way when the shooting happened so she had no comment, adding: “I haven’t had a chance to discuss it with the president. I’ll get back to you if I have something. But the president has stated many times that he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and get away with it. So he’s just keeping a campaign promise. He did nothing wrong. There are no charges against him. And even though I have no comment, and he has no comment, we’ve commented on this extensively.”
But his point is a deadly serious one. Trump could shoot someone and his base and his Republican toadies would probably still support him.
And it's all part of the Russification of America.
“The Russification of America under Trump, it’s not just about collusion, corruption and money laundering,” said Gorbis. “It is about his behavior” — crass language, simplistic slogans reminiscent of the Soviet rhetoric, use of terms such as “enemy of the people,” and his insistence on personal loyalty over loyalty to the Constitution or institutions.
And of course, Friedman's final point is the most important one.
A few more years of this Russification of America and the rot will be everywhere. Russia will have won the post-Cold War, and the fictional story at the top of this column will become nonfiction — just like that. Remember that when you vote in the midterms.
Americans should vote in the upcoming midterm elections as if the survival of their democracy depended upon it.
For it almost certainly does...