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Trump's strategy of 'attack and threaten' is unchanged — but his words are more dangerous now: analysis
Donald Trump has once again responded to his legal problems by attacking those who would prosecute him. But this time, that poses a new and greater danger, a Washington Post analysis suggests today.
Trump’s preemptive announcement that he would be indicted role his role in 2016 hush money payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels enabled him to “make himself the center of attention of both the legal and political worlds, offering a window into his campaign strategy while highlighting the dangers he poses to the stability of the country,” the Post reported.
“In typical fashion, Trump didn’t wait for the grand jury to speak, calling on his followers to stage protests in an echo of what he had tweeted ahead of the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol (‘Be there. Will be wild.’), the Post noted. “On Friday morning, the former president posted an even more troubling message on Truth Social, calling Bragg ‘a degenerate psychopath’ and warning of 'potential death and destruction' if he is indicted in connection with what he termed ‘a false charge.’”
But after what happened on January 6, 2021, everything is different, the analysis suggested.
READ: Trump's Waco rally leaves El Paso officials seething
“In the past, statements like that were not taken seriously enough. But after his lies about the 2020 election, the storming of the U.S. Capitol and everything else he has done to undermine the integrity of the voting process, that’s no longer possible. No one today discounts the possibility of violence surrounding the former president or instigated by him.
“His call for protests prompted law enforcement officials in New York to erect security barriers around the criminal court complex. His declarations on Friday led House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) to warn that Trump’s ‘reckless, reprehensible and irresponsible’ rhetoric could ‘get someone killed.’”
Don’t expect Trump’s approach to change soon, according to the Post analysis.
“A Republican who supports him said that, under these circumstances, there is only one political strategy for Trump: attack, attack, attack. The former president will continue to try to turn every legal investigation into a political fight, as he has done since he became president. He will play victim and demand that his party defend him against the Democrats, the legal system, the left and the media.”
ALSO IN THE NEWS: How one Christian homeschooler activity is shaping the future of American politics
How one Christian homeschooler activity is shaping the future of American politics
The emergence of debate leagues for Evangelical homeschoolers has evolved into a springboard for far-right politicians, according to a report today at Religion Dispatches, a daily non-profit online magazine covering religion, politics and culture.
Citing the example of Republican Alaska State Rep. David Eastman, whose incendiary words have earned him censure from both parties – and thus, stardom on the right – author R.L. Stollar lays out how the “niche milieu” of the leagues have propelled such voices.
“Academic debate leagues have become immensely popular among evangelical homeschoolers,” writes Stollar, a child liberation theologian and an advocate for children and abuse survivors. “Recognizing and grasping the culture of homeschool debate is crucial to our broader understanding of Christian nationalism, as the young people who participated are beginning to have a significant impact on American society.”
The first Evangelical debate leagues were launched in 1997 by Michael Farris, the founder of the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA), “a far-right lobbying organization for Christian homeschoolers,” writes Stolar. Farris co-founded a national homeschool debate league under HSLDA with his daughter, Christy Shipe, at the time a student at a conservative Baptist university.
READ: Trump's Waco rally leaves El Paso officials seething
“Describing the goals of the league upon its founding, Farris declared that he aimed for children to obtain the “ability to stand for the truth of God’s word” and “to help homeschoolers address life’s issues biblically, with God’s glory, not their own, as the focus,” according to Stollar.
And there was this:
“Homeschool debate leagues have unique guardrails in place to ensure two things: first, that students only argue about “safe” topics, and second, that they focus primarily on speech performance. Questioning core beliefs is thus avoided. “Due to the limits of the conservative and Christian ideologies of the leagues, their resolutions, and our judging pools, everything was severely one-sided,” one participant told the magazine. “The goal of debate (for homeschoolers) is to bring up the next generation of rhetorical speakers who support conservatism. The content is not about identifying the truth. It’s about reinforcing the beliefs of the audience.”
And, the report concludes, “With Eastman and the other rising stars in the Christian Right, what we’re essentially seeing are those tools—and the corresponding, highly charged rhetorical style—being effectively used in service of Christian nationalism.
“These young people can be incendiary, yes, but they are also articulate and adept at persuading audiences. Michael Farris’s original vision for the league—to raise an army of communicators for Christ to infiltrate and take over American political and social institutions—appears to be coming to fruition. We underestimate that vision and its adherents at our peril.”
ALSO IN THE NEWS: 'Mount Waffle House': Trump Waco rally goer claims to be Marines veteran but 'can’t go into detail'
'Must be Opposite Day': Critics promptly debunk Trump’s claim 'nobody laughed' at U.S. when he was president
Former President Donald Trump used a portion of his Waco, Texas rally speech Saturday to insist "nobody laughed" at the United States of America during his presidency.
@Acyn shared a clip from the former president's address, writing, "Trump: Nobody laughed at our country when I ran it."
Subsequently, Twitter users — from all over the world — immediately debunked the former's claim citing ample amounts of evidence.
READ MORE: 'RICO': Georgia prosecutors considering racketeering and conspiracy charges against Trump
@lachevron: "I don't know Donald, that speech you gave at the UN, everybody laughed at you when you bragged and lied and you represented us."
Dave Farr: "To be fair, they were mostly laughing at him."
@jenminicooper: "Canadian here. He’s right. I didn’t laugh. I was utterly horrified and petrified instead."
@razzli: "Okay, so we're just going to perpetually live in fairytale land, huh?"
READ MORE: 'Going full fascist': Morning Joe blasts Trump’s latest 'dehumanizing' attack on Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg
@Sillyshib: "Dear US, we did. We absolutely did. Love UK"
Caroline George: "Australia here …. we were laughing!"
@auntie_shay: "They literally laughed in his face. MULTIPLE times."
@padresfangirl: "We were too busy crying to laugh"
READ MORE: 'Chilling': Law enforcement 'seriously' investigating threats ahead of possible Donald Trump indictment
@ChinaKatSun: "I literally apologized for him in a bathroom in Ireland but ok."
@Christi37460685: "It must be Opposite Day in Waco."
In addition to claiming no one laughed at the U.S. under his leadership, Trump also said Florida Governor Ron DeSantis "came to him with tears in his eyes begging him for an endorsement," and he falsely claimed — as he has many times before — President Joe Biden lost the 2020 election, "but it was rigged."
Watch the video at this link.
READ MORE: 'Mount Waffle House': Trump Waco rally goer claims to be Marines veteran but 'can’t go into detail'