'Incitement' of MAGA loyalists is reason 'cult leader' Trump must be prosecuted: columnist
President of the United States Donald Trump speaking with supporters at a "Keep America Great" rally at Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix, Arizona. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

Donald Trump appears to be on the brink of indictment, and one columnist argued that's worth the risk of sparking civil unrest.

The Manhattan district attorney's office has indicated the former president is likely to face criminal charges related to hush money payments to porn actress Stormy Daniels, and Trump has been priming his followers to react violently to any threat to his power, wrote New York Times columnist Charles Blow.

"Could an indictment and prosecution of Trump cause consternation and possibly even unrest? Absolutely," Blow wrote. "Trump has been preparing his followers for his martyrdom for years and evangelizing to them the idea that any sanctioning of him is an attack on them. This transference of feelings of persecution and pain from manufactured victimhood is a classic psychological device of a cult leader."

Trump supporters already stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in a last-ditch effort to keep him in the White House, and Blow argued that further unrest was a necessary risk to prove this remains a nation of laws.

"Trump is the impresario of incitement. He’ll use any attempt to hold him accountable to agitate and activate his loyalists," Blow wrote. "That’s not a reason to avoid vigorously and swiftly pursuing him legally, but rather a reason to do it. If we establish a precedent that amassing a significant threat to society is a ward against enforcement of the law, it makes a mockery of the law."