On the day that Donald Trump’s historic second impeachment trial begins, the effects of the Trump era have already infiltrated our lives. Donald Trump made it OK to hate again. Crimes against Chinese Americans have drastically increased, the study of Black History Month is optional in schools in some communities, and hate groups no longer hide in darkness.
In Utah, a Montessori school tried to offer parents the chance to opt their students out of the Black History Month curriculum. The school abandoned that plan after a negative public response. The school then alerted parents who had “opted out” that it is with “regret” that opting out is no longer an option. It is impossible not to ask if Donald Trump’s attempt to make America great again by whitening the populus “sanctioned” this kind of hate. Bad people now feel safe saying out loud the things they’ve always been thinking.
In other hateful news, Donald Trump’s relabeling COVID-19 as the “China virus” is the stimulus for increased anti-Asian crimes, including an alarming rise in crimes against Asian seniors. Chinese businesses have also seen a sharp increase in boycotts. Like the insurrection that is the basis for the impeachment trial today, there is a direct tie to Donald Trump’s actions.
As the impeachment trial proceeds, we are likely to be bombarded with distasteful images of violence and hate. The man in the Camp Auschwitz t-shirt became famous due to his attire before his arrest. Shirts announcing that “six million was not enough” were frequently seen in the crowds.
Was it hopefulness that made some think that getting Trump out of office would flip the switch and normalcy would return? Unfortunately, it appears that we are living in the new normal. The majority of the United States elected Joe Biden and is clawing its way back to civility and progress. The ugly underbelly that keeps Republicans in line with Trump is growing in volume and anger. Trump doesn’t need Twitter to get the message out there. The Trump wannabees carry the MAGA torch.