The 2020 political conventions are playing out as expected. The DNC highlighted Republicans over progressives while the Republican Convention is embracing an alternative reality worthy of the Twilight Zone or Black Mirror. One convention was mostly fluff while the other is turning out to be all fibs.
Before the RNC got underway, CNN’s Brian Stelter said he planned to do “Live Fact Checks” of the Republican Convention. Not sure why, as a journalist, he didn’t he do the same for Democrats, but either way, live fact checking the republican alternative reality bubble is virtually impossible.
The news coverage of the convention should have started with the slogan from the Twilight Zone itself. “You are about to enter another dimension. A dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land of imagination. Next stop – The Republican National Convention.”
Although GOP aides promised a “very optimistic and upbeat” convention, we got none of that. What we got on Monday, and likely the rest of the convention, is an alternative reality where President Trump was victorious in his battle with Covid-19 and if he is not re-elected in November, the United States will turn into a socialist dystopia.
Speaker after speaker got up on stage and pushed the narrative that Trump took Covid-19 seriously and acted determinedly to stop the spread. Trump himself, speaking at the convention, once again called it the “China Virus.” Trump didn’t dwell on it long. Less than 5,000 people in China have died from the disease compared to 180,000 in the United States, despite having five times the population.
By any measure, and any expert, the U.S. has failed miserably at containing the corona-virus and continues to fail day after day. The responsibility lies at the top, but not if you’re a Republican.
“From the very beginning, Democrats, the media and the World Health Organization got corona-virus wrong,” declared a voice-over, sampling quotes from Democratic politicians in February saying the situation was still under control. “One leader took decisive action to save lives: President Donald Trump.”
The truth is, for the first few months Trump repeatedly compared the corona-virus to the common flu and predicted it would “miraculously” disappear by April when the weather warmed up. Trump didn’t take it seriously until aides told him his re-election may be at risk.
Even then, before the virus was under control, Trump decided to push for the economy to reopen nation wide. Ask Florida, Texas, and Arizona how that’s working out. Covid-19 has since gotten out of control. ICU beds are maxed out, county hospitals are low on ventilators and testing capacity is once again at a breaking point.
In the absence of a national strategy to defend, Republicans took to praising Trump for his effort to fast-track a corona-virus vaccine, which is still in a trial phase. While the U.S. holds on to the promise of a quick vaccine, more than a thousand Americans die every day while other countries have seriously limited the effect of the spread by using the same social distancing and mask wearing measures Trump won’t enforce.
When the topic wasn’t about Trump’s brave leadership in response to the Corona-virus, the conversation steered toward fear mongering. Ironically, the speakers at the convention went down a list of grievances about the state of the country even though Trump has supposedly made it “great again.”
Kimberly Guilfoyle, the former Fox News personality and girlfriend of Donald Trump Jr. claimed during a six-minute rant that Democrats had turned California into “a land of discarded heroin needles in parks, riots in streets and blackouts in homes.” She didn’t mention she’s California’s current Governor, Gavin Newsom’s ex-wife.
Much of the fear mongering revolved around socialism, trying to paint Democratic leaders and the Biden/Harris ticket as the second coming of Lenin. Completely laughable if you know who they really are, but that didn’t stop them.
Nikki Haley, former ambassador to the UN said, “their vision for America is socialism and we know that socialism has failed everywhere.” Maximo Alvarez, a Florida businessman whose family fled Cuba went further, saying “President Trump is fighting against the forces of socialism, communism and totalitarianism. He will continue to do just that and what about his opponent and the rest of the D.C. swamp? I have no doubt they will hand the country over to those dangerous forces.”
Let’s not forget the hate. Another of Trump’s campaign strategies revolves around crime. Playing on the racist fears of people from low-income neighborhoods taking over the suburbs. Cue the St. Louis couple, Mark and Patty McCloskey.
The McCloskeys, both lawyers, gained national attention last June for pointing guns at peaceful Black Lives Matter protesters who marched by their mansion in St. Louis on route to the Mayor’s house. They’re now facing felony charges of unlawful use of a weapon.
Still, they were allowed to take the mic at the convention and spew their racist bulls**t. “They are not satisfied with spreading the chaos and violence into our communities. They want to abolish the suburbs altogether by ending single-family home zoning. These are the policies that are coming to a neighborhood near you. So, make no mistake: No matter where you live, your family will not be safe in the radical Democrats’ America.”
Single-family zoning is a policy that restricts construction in an area to single-family homes, no apartments, or duplexes, and therefore prevents communities from building more affordable housing options. The policy has helped maintain segregation for decades after civil rights laws were passed.
This was only day one of the Republican Convention. The alternate reality, the hate, the fear and of course, the purveyor of it all, President Trump will be back for day two, three, and four. It’s going to be a long week.