Signs of a Dictator

Posted on October 8, 2020


President Trump has shown us with disturbing deft how authoritarianism doesn’t suddenly march on as it creeps in bit to bit, being normalized at every step.
If there was any doubt that President Trump values despotism over democracy, it was erased by the spectacle of his return to the White House after being hospitalized for COVID-19.
With cameras rolling for the campaign video that would be cut within minutes, Trump emerged from Marine One, ascended the stairs to the White House South Portico, dramatically removed the mask that shielded others from his infectiousness and stood – labored breathing and all – staring out over the South Lawn in a display that invoked equal parts of Benito Mussolini and Eva Peron, and like most dictators he stood alone while making his speech.
It is aptly noted in America, our presidents have generally avoided strongman balcony scenes, that’s for other countries with authoritarian systems.
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