New York Occasions political reporter Matt Flegenheimer filed a panicky “Political Memo” for Wednesday’s version: “Trump’s Bible Photo Op Further Divides Debate On State of Democracy.” It’s one other brick within the edifice the paper is attempting to assemble portraying Trump as a hazard to American democracy.
Flegenheimer opened with a thought experiment (since The Occasions’s information pages are resembling writing class assignments extra every day):
If one other chief of one other nation stood in one other simmering capital and instructed police and legislation enforcement to “dominate the streets” towards protesters, then walked by means of a park the place authorities officers had forcibly cleared demonstrators from his path, then arrived exterior a church to carry a Bible aloft like a championship trophy for the cameras — nicely, what would America consider that?
It’s time, some opponents and teachers agree, to have the dialog.
Have not they been having this dialog even earlier than Trump gained in 2016? He continued (click on “increase”):
From the earliest days of this norm-smashing administration, fretful critics, students and overseas coverage specialists have stored watch for indicators of President Trump’s anti-democratic streak. This has not all the time required an exhaustive search.
However the White Home response to the gushing nationwide traumas of this second seems to have registered on one other aircraft, producing the sorts of scenes and sound bites that some doomsayers had lengthy prophesied and including to the mounting social and public well being crises a festering concern in regards to the state of American democracy itself.
And presiding over all of it was the person who had threatened to ship the American navy to states the place governors couldn’t restore calm, labeling demonstrators who’ve used violence to attract consideration to police brutality towards black folks as “organizers” of terror.
No criticism of Democratic hysteria made the story:
All of the whereas, some Democrats are deploying a time period that they’ve turned to often in these three and a half years, however maybe by no means with such frequency and conviction.
“The phrases of a dictator,” Senator Kamala Harris of California stated.
“He behaves like a dictator,” Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts tweeted.
Ahem: One large trace that you’re not residing below a dictator….is that you just be at liberty to say that you’re residing below a dictator:
Yascha Mounk, an affiliate professor at Johns Hopkins College who has written extensively about threats to liberal democracy, stated that Mr. Trump was finest understood as “an authoritarian populist.” In Mr. Trump’s conception of authority, Mr. Mounk stated, “what which means is that he and he alone really represents the folks. And anyone who disagrees with them, anyone who criticizes him, by advantage of that reality is an enemy of the folks.”
Flegenheimer additionally threw in some extra scary and non-objective adjectives: “There may be little indication of that up to now — and little political incentive, it appears, for get together leaders to sentence a determine who stays extensively in style with their base (and whose rampaging conduct has been well-known since earlier than his election).”