projecting.

In a lot of ways, Trump is a convenient face and figure. His more performative aspects make it easier for people who are normally apolitical to be able to contextualize their reactions. People have more forthright examples to point to as a frame of reference. Liberal women hate him for being just another condescending man — women in general hate him for his many instances of outright misogyny. People of color hate him for reasons that are readily apparent, but it's easier to suss out, rather than on a political and cultural hegemony kind of level, the things he's doing by the conversations you have with the other people of color in your life, in discussing the latest thing Trump or his more vocal supporters recently said or did.

I don't particularly give in to the idea of 'Trumpism' for just this reason. Not because it presupposes this idea that a lot of what Trump is unearthing in people was simply latent all this time (which is true in certain aspects). Just that it's more valuable to think about these things as they relate to other aspects of the society and culture we live in, for 'Trumpism' to even be given proper form. I suppose I'm ultimately making more of a point rooted in linguistics. Taking it a step further, it plays into this idea that to do away with all of the troubling and hateful signifiers that are attached to 'Trumpism', such as white supremacy, fascism and ethno-nationalism, would easily be done away with by removing Trump and his associates from office. The way we've coined and continue to use this specific term is just too convenient, I feel, for things that enters the public consciousness so gradually and perniciously.

All of this is to say with some concern that people have already begun dialing back on the rhetoric that was rightfully critical of Trump, now that we're transitioning to a Biden presidency. More than anything, I hate for people to start resting on laurels, because it confirms how much they don't actually care about the issues they claim to fight for in their pithy, low-effort retweets and Instagram stories. The idea that has now become a meme of Obama, and Biden, for that matter, being the ones who built the cages at the border is a justified criticism, and that Trump continued his particular legacy (along with several others with regard to foreign policy and kissing up to corporations), is something to the Democratic establishment that is inextricably worthy of blame. Yet we don't come up with terms to categorize the willfully blind Obama supporters who think unquestionably that he was one of the greatest and most compassionate American presidents in U.S. history. Even though, in its own right, it is also a very troubling and persistent pathology.