Trump Calls Democrats "Treasonous" for Not Applauding Him at SOTU

At a speech today in Ohio, where he was supposed to be promoting his tax bill, Donald Trump went on an extended riff about how the Democrats were insufficiently enthusiastic during his State of the Union address, which he found "un-American" and "treasonous."

So that means they would rather see Trump do badly, okay, than our country do well. That's what it means. It's very selfish. And it got to a point where I really didn't even wanna look too much during the speech over to that side, 'cause, honestly, it was bad energy. No, it was bad energy! You're up there; you've got half the room going totally crazy wild; they love everything; they wanna do something great for our country — and you have the other side, even on positive news, really positive news, like that, they were like death. And un-American. Un-American. Somebody said "treasonous." I mean, yeah! [makes a goofy face and shrugs] I guess, why not? [crowd laughs] Can we call that treason? Why not? I mean, they certainly didn't seem to love our country very much. But you look at that and it's — it's really very, very sad.
Three observations:

1. It's important to remember that Donald Trump is an inveterate projectionist who always accuses other people of doing whatever he's doing.

2. Note the jocular tone he uses to call his ideological opponents "treasonous" for failing to applaud him. That tone is not an accident. It serves to preemptively deflect any inevitable criticism by asserting he was "joking" (and his critics are humorless and over-reacting), while simultaneously diminishing the inherent seriousness of treason, should he ever be charged with it. "Treason" will have become just another incendiary insult that politicians throw at each other, like the president did at Democrats for their lack of clapping. It's not like it means anything. Incredibly sinister stuff.

3. Lest we fall directly into that trap, let us pause to seriously contemplate the gravity of what happened today: The United States president called members of the opposition party "treasonous" — and, even more specifically, members of the Black Caucus, whom his base excoriated for their "disrespect" — because they they did not publicly demonstrate their enthusistic fealty to his satisfaction.

Chilling. And also just another day in the Era of Trump.

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