In the wake of violent outbreaks at his rallies, the great and wonderful Donald Trump had this to say in St. Louis on Friday:
“Part of the problem and part of the reason it takes so long [to remove protestors from a Trump rally] is nobody wants to hurt each other anymore, and they’re being politically correct the way they take them out, so it takes a little bit longer. And honestly, protesors, they realize it. They realize there are no consequences to protesting anymore. There used to be consequences. There are none anymore.”
And there shouldn’t be. Freedom of assembly is a constitutional right. This violent rhetoric, this racist, fascist bullshit, is fucking terrifying. I cannot believe that this is the country we live in. I can’t believe that Donald Trump can stand around and yammer about “the good old days” when protestors would get their asses beat to a roaring crowd and, in the same sentence, say that these are bad people.
Why are they bad people? Because they don’t want to live in the America Trump envisions, and they’re willing to stand up and say so? Because they’re exercising their freedom of speech? Because they believe in equality? Because they value the consitutional rights this country is built on, and which Mr. Trump seems to have conveniently forgotten in his march to abolish “political correctness” in service of “making America great again,” whatever that means?
Look: protestors change the world. They’re the only ones with the fortitude to withstand beatings from narrowminded fuckwits like Trump and his horde. Most of the rest of us just stand by and hope for the best. MLK changed the world. The Stonewall riots changed the world. What’s been happening in St. Louis and Baltimore and other cities all over the country in response to systematic racism, what’s been happening as a result of the growing number of extreme, violent deaths of our transgender brothers and sisters, is changing the motherfucking world.
These are not, in fact, bad people, Mr. Trump. They’re the ones who will stop you.