2020 2020election BlackLivesMatter Culture DonaldTrump Election Election2020 georgefloyd

Hold your Bible like Trump, what a new trend for the red-capped rally masses

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump holds up a copy of the Bible he said his mother gave him as a youth during a campaign rally in Council Bluffs, Iowa, on Dec. 29, 2015. Photo courtesy of REUTERS/Lane Hickenbottom *Editors: This photo may only be republished with RNS-TRUMP-LIBERTY, originally transmitted on Jan. 5, 2016, and with RNS-RELIGIOUS-PRESIDENTS, originally transmitted on Jan. 27, 2016.
(Holding up a Bible in 2015)
I meant to buy Greenland. I meant to propose nuking hurricanes. I meant to set myself up for ridicule and contempt by posing awkwardly with a Bible.

The pandering will get worse, however poorly crafted by IMPOTUS*. Trump actually has held up the Bible at his campaign events like he did on 1 June. Perhaps it will become “a thing” for his followers like that “white power” hand sign.

Recalling all that autograph seeking using Bibles (and their resale over eBay) reactionary foolishness will be infectious in the coming months. Bibles are only a part of the cultural melange of stunts and foolishness.

Malignancy will be the watchword as the Trump rallies return, only this time to spread COVID-19. They will “catch something”. Trump still believes that testing rather than the disease, increases the death rate. The science has done enough so far to imply that not wearing a mask is actually dangerous, especially without social distancing. Two million cases now have occurred in the US. Trump Deaths Matter.


Trump campaign spokesman Rick Gorka said the president is “building on the organic energy that is out there for President Trump. Our field team is making sure activists have the skills, tools and swag to wave the flag. Literally and figuratively. … The energy is the key, we have it, they don’t. It’ll hurt Democrats from top to bottom.”



Perhaps we will soon see some Trump appearances at flotillas, even as they are supplements to a campaign more based on merchandising.

The large boat parades began organically among MAGA devotees in South Florida. Now, the Trump campaign is encouraging the flotillas. | Jason Buck for POLITICO

The large boat parades — which began organically among MAGA devotees in South Florida and spread to Florida’s Gulf Coast, Arizona’s Lake Havasu, South Carolina’s Charleston Harbor and Southern California’s Newport Harbor during Memorial Day weekend — quickly caught the notice of the president and his campaign. Now, the campaign is encouraging the flotillas and utilizing its robust data operation to organize and excite a demographic that turns out to be heavily represented in some of the most closely contested swing states from the Sun Belt to the Great Lakes.


The boater data shared by the campaign underscores its ability to finely slice and model the electorate. But the MAGA boaters aren’t so much of a persuadable group of swing voters as a sign of the enthusiasm of Trump’s base, and their flotillas a symbol of a campaign that prizes spectacle and energy.


With another 100,000 to die from COVID-19 before September, these are unique times, where Trumpian spectacle will try to make you forget about the pandemic and police brutality. The real problem will be whether there will be serious electoral consequences.

“Ladies and gentleman,” Jelani Cobb remarked. “This is what you call uncharted territory.”

Fifteen days and nights into this nationwide conflagration, the protests following the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis are truly navigating the unknown.

Enormous crowds, overwhelmingly peaceful and highly diverse, have erupted in cities across the country; a movement against police brutality has been met with police brutality; the US president has responded with one of the most memorable – and violent – photo ops of the modern era.

“The popular reaction to the gruesome Floyd murder has been astonishing in its national scope, fervent commitment and interracial solidarity,” observed the philosopher and social critic Noam Chomsky. “The malignancy that infects the White House has been exposed in all its ugliness.”