Republican presidential candidate (as much as it hurts to introduce him as one) Donald Trump retweeted a post by @ilduce2016 Sunday at 6:13 a.m. The main portion of the tweet read, “It is better to live one day as a lion than 100 years as a sheep,” and the quote was attributed to Trump himself by crediting his Twitter handle, @realDonaldTrump. The tweet, of course, closed w
ith #MakeAmericaGreatAgain. It’s funny how a hashtag in modern times has the potential to brainwash online communities into believing that the ideals behind any campaign are good for society.
According to The New York Times, @ilduce2016 is a parody Twitter account, and its icon features Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini with Trump’s vibrant yellow, feathered hair plastered across the top of Mussolini’s head. The resemblance suddenly becomes shocking.
Trump retweeted it without knowing whom the quote actually belonged to, he admitted in an interview with NBC’s “Meet the Press.” This poses strong evidence in support of the extraordinary level of ignorance Trump publicly displays daily. In fact, Trump probably thought that the quote did, in fact, come from his mouth. Rather than retweeting with the original creator’s icon, he used a function called “quote retweeting,” which allowed him to take more ownership of the tweet.
In the interview with “Meet the Press,” Trump confirmed his ignorance by referring to the tweet as “a very good quote.” While Trump was clearly unwilling or too uninformed to take the authority to discover whom the quote traces back to, he retweeted it and stands firmly by his decision.
“What difference does it make if it was Mussolini or somebody else,” he stated. It makes one wonder if he even knows who Mussolini is.
Furthermore, Trump’s general opinion of the matter was a simple question: “Hey, it got your attention, didn’t it?” If that is all Trump cares about, regardless of whether or not he knows or cares whose quotes he haphazardly posts, this question alone should be a red flag for anyone supporting Trump. His statements about the issues he discusses — immigration, taxes, the bashing of his fellow competitors in the election — are often vague and contradictory. As a result, it’s obvious that he doesn’t care for what he promotes. He just wants your attention. To him, that’s what a good president does.
Perhaps the most frightening realization is that Trump doesn’t even notice the self-destructive campaign he is fueling. Online communities have already made countless comparisons between the candidate and the leader of Nazi Germany, Adolf Hitler. So why stop there? Like Hitler and Mussolini, Trump experiments with various modes of propaganda, political philosophy and even public humiliation of others in order to invoke fear and obedience on a national stage, all for the sake of his own notoriety. Calling for a radical demolition of the established government of his country in the same way Mussolini once did, Trump’s campaign to “Make America Great Again” aims solely to frighten and abuse the morale of American citizens in order to carry Trump to the top of the presidential race.
While Trump has, in some respects, become a novelty of a candidate to many people, it’s important to remember that if elected, he poses an overwhelmingly dangerous threat to the little bit of peaceable government structure currently in place. It’s interesting that the people who choose to closely interpret the constitution in its original context are the same ones who don’t feel the need for a law that allows Americans to deny a candidate the presidency when he poses the threat to national security. Trump’s campaign should never have gotten this far, and it doesn’t deserve the press and recognition it’s received.
Trump doesn’t want to “Make America Great Again,” he just wants to become a household name, and he has no regard for whom he has to hurt to get there. All of America’s citizens? Even better. Then they’ll know his name.